Swing Low, Sweet Cherry
Sweet Captivating Italian
QA Velenosi Visciole NV, 13.5%, 50cl, €18.95 Karwig Wines
I was introduced to this beauty by Betty Karwig a few weeks back but it didn't get serious until the other night when I sipped it for the very first time.
When I got close, there were sensual aromas, intense and rich. Then the deep ruby red passed my lips and all heaven broke loose, a gentle riot of sweet fruit flavours, captivating cherries, full bodied, fresh and so well balanced. I just sipped and sipped this intriguing stranger, new to Karwig’s and new to me too. Very Highly Recommended, by the way.
So where did this perfectly formed dessert wine come from. I’ll let the winery explain:
The basic ingredient for this cherry wine is an ancient variety of wild cherry, namely “visciola” (Prunus cerasus), which has a deep red colour and sour taste. Based on the traditional recipe, sour cherries are harvested when ripe, during the first weeks of July, and left to soak in sugar, partly whole and partly smashed; thus fermentation starts and slowly brings the juice to a delicate and aromatic syrup. This product is then decanted for a few days and finally filtered. The result is a syrup with a high sugar concentration, which is added to the wine starting a second fermentation. So wine and syrup are blended together. Fermentation is stopped when 14% alcohol by volume is achieved, with a residual sugar which makes this product more enjoyable.
They recommend pairing it with petit fours with bitter chocolate. It can also be drunk as a wine for meditation or as a digestive at the end of a meal, they say.
But I've been working hard on your behalf and have come up with these matches, tried and tested:
with Almond and Raspberry financiers (not the kind you'll find in a bank!);
even better with the dark chocolate made by Allison of Clonakilty Chocolate;
and also with Crozier Blue cheese.
Will let you know if I find anymore, but my bottle is nearly finished!