Estate: Founded in 1964, the Lamberti Winery is located on the prestigious shores of Lake Garda, in the Veneto region of northern Italy. Taking its name from one of Verona’s most ancient families, the estate is known for crafting “a range of ‘New Italian Classics,’ brilliant, elegant and approachable wines that combine tradition with a modern style”. The family has 27 hectares of vineyards; they also have longstanding partnerships with neighboring producers, enabling them to offer a larger range of wines. Their vineyards are known for the seregni stones, stones left behind by ancient glaciers, contributing to the distinctive terroir of the land. The characteristic mineral quality fond in the wines has been known to locals for many years. “Sante pietre was a term used by farmers to indicate a place where grapes grew in an exemplary manner, as if to say “good old stones”.
Winemaking: All vineyards are farmed using organic methods. Grapes came specifically from hillside vineyards running across the Treviso region in Veneto. The red grapes are vinified using the saigné method. Secondary fermentation is done in closed pressure tanks using the Charmat method.
Tasting Notes: Coral Pink in colour with aromas of strawberry, raspberry and hints of wildflowers. Mineral driven with light berry flavours buoyed by solid bubbles and a dry finish. A simple and fun bubbly great on its own or with light snacks.
34% Pinot Bianco, 33% Pinot Nero, 33% Raboso
Produced by 9533/TV for Lamberti S.P.A.
Estate: Le Sot de l’Ange translates to “Idiot Angel” of Azay-Le-Rideau, and refers to the decision “energetic and young” winemaker Quentin Bourse made when he took over a friend’s domaine in a tiny, off the radar appellation. Azay-Le-Rideau is located within the Touraine AOC, in the Loire Valley and has a winemaking history that dates back to the Romans. The 12 hectare estate has been certified biodynamic for over 10 years; Quentin’s first vintage was 2013.
Winemaking: Quentin manages the entire estate himself, by hand; his friends give help with harvest. Vineyard soil is predominately clay over silica. Crafted in the Pét-nat [pétillant naturel] manner, an ancient method of making sparkling wines.
Tasting Notes: Venetian red* in colour with aromas of strawberry, cherry, minerals and a hint of sweet funk. Packed with tart cherry andblackberry flavours with a streak of lemony acidity. Fine, light bubbles are the foil to a shake of nutmeg and sprinkle of funk on the dry finish. Refreshing and gluggable, this is a wonderfully distinctive wine well worth seeking out.
*[Yes, at the risk of sounding pretentious I used Venetian. I could have said cherry red, but I felt Venetian really is the better descriptor. Ahhh, art school.]
As to be expected with such an engaging, esoteric wine, details such as vintage year, varietal percentage, alcohol content and bottling info are at times a bit enigmatic. I do believe this is the 2014 vintage, but ¯\_(ツ)_/¯.
100% Gamay or a blend of Gamay and Grolleau
Winery: Celler Jordi Lluch is a family winery located in in Sant Quintí de Mediona, in the heart of the Penedès region of Catalonia, Spain. The family has been making wine for many generations, but only started producing for the public in 1984. The Vinya Escudé label was created in 1992 when they began bottling their wines. The estate consists of 25 hectares which are supplemented by neighboring growers to meet their needs.
Tasting Notes: Coppery pink in colour with aromas of strawberry and a hint of funk. Dried strawberry and leather notes are complimented by mellow, consistent bubbles. A pleasantly bitter element lingers on the dry finish. Like a fizzy fruit roll up, an enjoyable change of pace combining bubbles and rosé.
100% Pinot Noir
Produced by Jordi Lluch
Villa Maria ‘Bubbly’ Sauvignon Blanc debuting at The New Zealand Wine Fair in NYC, accompanied by George the Sheep.
Estate: One of my favorite New Zealand wineries, Villa Maria was founded in 1961 when George Fistonich leased 5 acres in Marlborough from his father. Today the family estate has more than 250 employees, exports wine to over 50 countries and is New Zealand’s most awarded winery. Practicing sustainable farming and possessing a long term view of both the environment and the wine business, Villa Maria believes that “sustainability is not an end point but a journey and therefore we are always finding ways to embed sustainable principles into the culture of the organization”.
Winemaking: “Fruit for this wine was sourced from a selection of vineyards throughout New Zealand spanning a range of different climates and soil types. Cool, slow fermentation in stainless steel tanks”, bottled soon after fermentation to capture its freshness. This is a brand new offering from the estate. Made in the style of an Italian frizzante [lightly sparkling].
Tasting Notes: Cheerful and sunny, with melon and citrus buoyed by small, fizzy bubbles. Good acidity compliments fresh juicy flavours; the clean, zippy finish keeps you reaching for more. Fantastic for summer sipping!
100% Sauvignon Blanc
$15 [average price]
Media event hosted by New Zealand Winegrowers
Estate: 10th generation winegrower Markus Huber took over his family estate at the age of 23 and has become renowned for his focused, mineral driven wines. The 99 acre estate is located in the tiny Traisental region of northeastern Austria, an area famous for its Grüner Veltliner. The vineyards have the characteristic limestone soil of the area and are located on small terraces that are certified sustainable, with a large portion of organic methods also utilized. The ‘Hugo’ line of wines are “excellent values for everyday drinking”.
Winemaking: Fermented in stainless steel, then aged sur lie for 4 months [the finished wine sits on residual fruit and yeast particles].
Tasting Notes: Pale coral/copper in colour with aromas of strawberry, rain washed minerals and fresh bread. Fantastically consistent, fizzy bubbles buoy tart raspberry and strawberry flavors. Brioche, minerals and floral hints linger cheerfully on the dry finish. Great on its own or with light dishes, a fun deviation from Prosecco or Cava.
Blend of Zweigelt and Pinot Noir
Bottled by Markus Huber