Red Wine Korlat Supreme Cuvee 2013. Decant 1 hour before serving. Founded in 1956, the Benkovac estate is a household name in Croatia thanks to their exceptional rosé wines crafted from their stony soils and verdant vines in central Dalmatia. In 2004 the estate began a brand-new project, planting Bordeaux varietals like Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot on rocky terrain in Korlat which is a short drive from the main winery. Conditions here are perfect for producing powerful reds which are as much influenced by their Bordeaux heritage as the excellent Dalmatian terroir. During the long warm growing season the vines enjoy plenty of sunshine with temperatures moderated by the constant breezes from the nearby coast. The arid conditions and well-draining soils help to stress the vines, ensuring they produce intensely-flavoured grapes which in turn create characterful, full-bodied wines. This Supreme Cuvee is a superb introduction to Croatia’s premium red wines, showing off the quality of the Korlat terroir as well as the skill of Benkovac’s talented winemakers. The blend is composed of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Syrah fruit which is vinified separately before being aged in oak barrels to add polish and a touch of spice. Bursting with luscious dark berries, plums, and hints of dark chocolate and Mediterranean herbs, this hearty and robust red is a great partner for charcuterie, hard cheeses, tomato-based pasta dishes, or a fine steak.
Red Wine Korlat Supreme Cuvee 2013
Red Wine Marchesi di Gresy Barbera d’Asti Monte Colombo 2013. Truly one of Piedmont’s hidden secrets, Marchesi di Gresy is one of the region’s top producers, crafting elegant and refined reds which are frequently said to rival those made by their neighbour, Angelo Gaja. Owned by the di Grésy family since 1797, the property was run as a farm and the grapes sold off to local winemakers right up to the 1970s. It was then that Alberto di Grésy began to bottle his own wines, insisting on an exceptional attention to detail and quality in both the vineyard and winery. This powerful Barbera d’Asti is sourced from a prime south-facing vineyards in the commune of Cassine which were left abandoned for many years before the di Grésy family planted them in 1998. The grapes are carefully harvested and sorted and the must fermented in stainless steel tanks before the young wine undergoes 18 months of ageing in French oak barrels. Before release the wine is also aged for 6 months in the bottle. Bright red berry, sour cherry and subtle spiced notes characterise the nose while the palate offers a full body, silky smooth texture and vibrant streak of acidity which provides balance to the rich, robust dark fruit flavours.
Red Wine Michele Chiarlo Barolo Cerequio Riserva 2013. Decant 2 hours before serving. Michele Chiarlo founded his namesake winery in 1956, and his family have been producing exceptional Barolo and other classic Piedmontese wines ever since. The estate is located in Monferrato and owns vineyards in many of the region’s most prized crus including Cannubi and Cerequio in Barolo. The Chiarlos are firm believers that quality begins in the vineyard, which is why the estate pursues sustainable agricultural practices wherever possible and was certified by VIVA Sustainable Wine in 2011. Cerequio is a top Barolo cru between La More and Barolo which was described as having absolute prestige” by the celebrated Mappa del Barolo in 1956. It’s also known as the Riviera of the Langhe” thanks to its protected location set in a natural amphitheatre which helps to shield the vines from strong winds. Michele Chiarlo has 9 hectares here which date back to 1972. Their Cerequio Riserva is only made in tiny quantities during the finest vintages from Chiarlo’s oldest vineyard in this cru. Once ripe the grapes are harvested by hand and vinified in oak vats in the traditional manner. The young wine is then moved to 700 litre tonneaux for 12 months, followed by another 2 years of ageing in large barrels. The final stage is another 24 months of ageing in the bottle before release, creating a powerful and complex Barolo with firm tannins, a well-developed structure, and enticing notes of leather, spice, and wild rose petals along with a solid core of dark fruit.