Red Wine Lo Zoccolaio Langhe Baccanera 2018. Traditionally Italian wineries would often plant a large tree in their courtyard to create shade for the workers during the hot summer months. At Casina Lo Zoccolaio their distinctive double-trunked white poplar tree has been adopted as the winery’s logo, reminding of the symmetrical tree of life in Jewish and Indian cultures which represents the forces of good and evil at work in the world. As well as their masterful Barolo wines, this boutique Piedmontese winery specialises in producing delicious and approachable red wines which pair perfectly with the local cuisine. This bright and vibrant Langhe red is a clever blend of indigenous Barbera and Nebbiolo grapes with Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. Grapes are sourced from estate vineyards in the Barolo village and Monforte d’Alba appellations, with harvesting carried out by hand to maximise quality. The grapes are fermented on the skins in temperature-controlled tanks and the young wine is then matured in French oak barrels for 18 months before bottling. On the nose there are charming notes of bramble, black cherry and plum as well as toasted oak, spice and dried herbs. Easy-going and accessible even when young, this is a fantastic partner for charcuterie, mature cheeses, and even hearty game dishes like venison.
Red Wine Lo Zoccolaio Langhe Baccanera 2018
Red Wine Orin Swift Slander Pinot Noir 2018. Decant 1 hour before serving. Orin Swift Cellars was founded by David Swift Phinney and is today regarded as one of America’s top boutique wineries. David fell in love with wine while visiting Florence in Italy and spent time working for Robert Mondavi Winery before founding his own project in 1998. The unusual name of the winery comes from a combination of his father’s middle name, Orin, and his mother’s maiden name, Swift. This stunning Pinot Noir is crafted from high quality fruit sourced from top vineyards in the Sonoma Coast, Russian River Valley and Santa Rita Hills AVAs. following vinification the wine ages in French oak for a total of 10 months which helps to add complexity and a touch of spice to the finished wine. On the nose there are intense hints of baked black cherries, dried rose petals, and earthy forest floor. The first sip reveals a generous full body, rich dark plums, strawberries and cranberries. Oak ageing helps to soften the tannins which are remarkably smooth and mellow, and the wine closes with a long finish of caramel, toasted brioche and raspberry jam. The bright red fruit character of this wine make it an ideal partner for duck dishes, and it will also continue to develop and evolve in the cellar over the next decade or so.
Red Wine Luca Beso de Dante 2018. The Catenas are considered Argentina’s premier winemaking family thanks to the vision and dedication of Nicolas Catena who helped put the country on the map for world-class Malbec. Luca is the brainchild of Nicolas’ daughter Laura who decided to name her new label after her son, Luca. All of the wines are crafted with the finest fruit from selected vineyards in Mendoza to create approachable yet complex wines which make a handsome addition to any cellar. Beso de Dante was created as a homage to two classic Bordeaux grapes, Cabernet Sauvignon and Malbec. Malbec was traditionally used in Bordeaux blends before the arrival of phylloxera which destroyed much of the region’s vineyards. Laura sources the fruit from specific plots in Vista Flores and Altamira, vinifying the grapes in individual parcels before she creates the final blend. The final touch is a period of ageing in oak barrels which adds hints of spice and woodsmoke to the intense cassis, blackberry and dark cherry core. On the palate there’s a generous full body, smooth tannins, and a long finish seasoned with cedar, tobacco leaf, and wild berry notes. A great red to pair with hearty dishes like a prime ribeye steak, beef stews, venison or a wild boar ragu served with fresh pappardelle pasta.