A Cabernet Franc Supreme. And an intriguing Sicilian white from red grapes.
Clau de Nell Cabernet Franc Anjou (AOC) 2017, 13%
RRP €43.99 Wineonline.ie - The Corkscrew - Blackrock Cellar - The Ely Wine Store, Maynooth - 64 Wine
A pretty deep red colour with a lighter rim. Aromas are fresh and intensely fruity. A terrific complexity on the palate but all’s in elegant harmony, that superb fruit and the fresh acidity, and that balance continues through the persistent and dry finish. Have liked this characterful variety since I spent a month in Chinon a few years back and this particular wine is Very Highly Recommended.
They say: This is certainly the direction in which we are trying to go. Healthy and balanced grapes, concentrated and vinified with finesse to tend towards delicacy and elegance. From red fruit to cooked fruit through black fruit, spices and a floral bouquet, this is a wine of beautiful complexity that invites indulgence. A velvety texture with silky tannins.
Pairings suggested are: Duck breast with red fruits or honey; Semi-cooked seared tuna and vegetables with butter sauce; Pan-fried chestnuts, chanterelles and quinoa…The best pairings are the ones that inspire you, and allow you to express yourself. Let your imagination run free…Serve at 16°C, do not hesitate to decant - good advice!
This was bottled on a “fruit day”, meaning that your Clau de Nell is not just organic but biodynamic. Think you may be interested in the info on their data sheet.
Age: vines from 45 to 55 years. Pruning: mixed Guyot Techniques: covering the vine stock with soil in autumn, ploughing-down in spring, tilling and natural grassing. Growing methods: biodynamic practices, infusions and plant decoctions, depending upon the lunar calendar. Yield: about 40 hl/ha Harvest: handpicking in 12 kg crates, sorting at the parcel when fully ripened. • Winemaking De-stemmed harvest, native yeast, 30-day maceration without extraction. Gentle cap punching, limited pumping over, infusion techniques. Pressing: slow and gentle pressing in a pneumatic press. • Maturing 12 months on fine lees in Burgundy casks (228L) used 5 to 7 times, followed by 6 months in vats. Bottling: without filtration or fining on a “fruit day.”
Terrazze dell'Etna, `Ciuri` Etna Bianco 2017, 13%
RRP €26.99. Wineonline.ie - Grapevine - The Corkscrew - The Ely Wine Store, Maynooth
'Ciuri' is made from Nerello Mascalese, an indigenous Sicilian red wine grape, in this case vinified 'in Bianco' without the skins. A similar if better-known example of the technique is used in Champagne to produce white from Pinot Noir, the blanc de noirs. The Ciuri is unoaked with great depth and intensity and wonderful length.
Pale straw is the colour, clean and bright. Fresh floral notes, exotic fruit too on the nose. Fresh and fruity (citrusy) and certainly minerally in the mouth. This youthful gem has been aged for six months in stainless-steel and then also in bottle before release. I don’t think you need keep it bottled up any longer. Just open and enjoy. Highly Recommended.
They say: From the volcanic soil of Etna comes this sapid and “high mineralised” wine. A unique wine characterised by a vibrant floral heart on the nose, a synthesis of the elegance of the grape, Nerello Mascalese, and the personality of the soil.
Professor Antonio Bevilacqua is an engineer by profession and has a very successful business, based in Palermo and Milan. He is very proud of his Sicilian origins, and in 2007 he decided to start buying land in Etna with a view to producing the best wines possible.
Today he has 35 hectares of vineyard with another 20 that he rents and manages, all situated at an altitude of between 600 and 900 metres above sea level. This altitude ensures warm days and cool nights, while the volcanic soil is low vigour, ensuring wines of great intensity and a lovely perfume from low-yielding vines.
His consultant oenologist is Riccardo Cotarella, who has successfully managed to marry the delicate intensity of the wines from Etna with a freshness and definition that few others have achieved.