Wednesday, August 4, 2021

Bertrand's Orange Gold Shines Among Impressive New Wines at O'Briens.

Bertrand's Orange Gold Shines

 Among Impressive New Wines at O'Briens.


Gérard Bertrand Orange Gold, Occitaine Vin du France 2020, 13%, €21.95

Orange Gold pays tribute to the first orange wines of Georgia 4500 years ago. Gérard Bertrand wants to create a new profile of orange wines, very fresh. Gérard Bertrand’s take on Orange wine is an innovative blend of seven white grape varieties:Chardonnay, Grenache Blanc, Viognier, Marsanne, Mauzac, Muscat and Clairette. The name and attractive bottle are an homage to the power of the sun and the magnificent sunsets over the South of France. 

Very Highly Recommended and straight on to my short list for wine of the year.

Orange gold will also serve to precisely describe the colour of this wine in its special bottle. Aromas are intense, full of sweet blossom and yes that freshness. The palate is complex, peach and apricot flavours, sweet notes but with tremendous harmony, its supple texture envelops the taste buds, its smooth tannins kiss the lips and there’s a lingering finish with a slight bitterness that begs for more. Another glass please and more food. 

So what food for this remarkable wine? They say: Endowed with a beautiful freshness, light tannins and subtle acidity, Orange Gold goes well with many dishes. It is a wine of character, the perfect companion for aperitifs with friends and cheese platters to share. This remarkable and luminous wine also goes very well with spicy food, especially Indian dishes or Asian recipes. Orange Gold can be drunk at 12°C to appreciate all its freshness and minerality. Its aromatic complexity and the richness of its palate will develop in the glass at 14°C.

Bertrand, a former rugby international, doesn’t do things by half measures - he is reported to have tasted over 70 orange wines from around the world as part of his research! His aims apparently were not to replicate the ancient Georgian methods but to come up with his own “fresh” version. No amphora here. Instead oak and stainless steel have been used as he mixed the ancient methods of the Georgians with the new ones of the South of France where he is a major player.

A few details:

The white grapes are vinified and fermented in whole bunches, like red wines. This maceration with the stalks and skins brings a remarkable orange colour with golden reflections and a very singular “tannicity”. It is an exceptional blend of seven grape varieties, all essentially Mediterranean: Chardonnay, Grenache Blanc and Viognier add volume and Marsanne, Mauzac and Muscat enrich the aromatic complexity of the wine.

Emiliana Novas Riesling Gran Reserva, Bío-Bío Valley Chile 2019

RRP €16.95 (reduced to €11.95 from 19th July to 1st September 2021)

Colour is a clear golden yellow. Apple, pear and lime feature in the rather complex aromatics (along with a whiff of diesel). The palate is packed with flavour, even a touch of sweetness but the zesty acidity helps keep it all in balance right though to the persistent finish. Highly Recommended.

O’Briens say: Emiliana's Novas Riesling Gran Reserva is produced from organically farmed grapes grown in the Bío Bío Valley, one of the most southern wine regions in the world located 500km south of the Chilean capital Santiago. This off-dry style, with its fresh acidity, makes this Riesling a perfect match for Asian cuisine. Try also with Oysters and shellfish, white meats and smoked salmon.

It is produced from organically farmed grapes, and is certified Organic and Vegan. Grapes are handpicked then placed in a pneumatic press to obtain the different musts, which were kept separate. Once ferment was complete, the wine was left in contact with its fine lees in stainless steel tanks for 5 months, with periodic stirring (batonnage) before being fined and bottled.

Emiliana is the world’s largest orange winery and have made eight commitments for the future:

1. Healing the Earth through Organic and Biodynamic actions
2. Generating new research into optimising and promoting Organic Viticulture
3. Conserving Biodiversity in the vineyards
4. Reducing Carbon Footprint
5. Reducing Energy Consumption
6. Reducing Water Consumption
7. Minimising the environmental impact of Supplies
8. Minimising the Generation of Waste and increasing Recycling

Emiliana Novas Syrah-Mourvèdre Gran Reserva, Cachapoal Valley Chile 2017, 14%

RRP €16.95 (reduced to €12.95 until 1st September 2021)

The fruit for Novas Gran Reserva Syrah-Mourvèdre comes from vineyards located in the

Cachapoal valley, 85km south of Santiago. The valley is well sheltered from the cooling

influences of the Pacific Ocean and enjoys a temperate Mediterranean climate ideal for

ripening these grape varieties.

Ruby is the colour of this Chilean blend, certified organic and vegan. Aromas are rich, packed with notes of cherries and plums. And the flavours (plums, blueberries) on the palate are not shy at all, no shortage of acidity either to balance. It is juicy and full-bodied with a hint of sweet spice plus silky tannins in a lengthy and satisfactory finish. Highly Recommended.

Food pairings recommended by the makers are: roasted red meats, or beef stew with oregano and carrots. Also combines well with Parmesan cheese and toasted bread with olive oil. And I’ve also seen hamburgers heartily recommended.

Lots of care taken with the vinification. The new wine remains on its skins at 22º–24ºC for 4–5 days. Malolactic fermentation takes place naturally in oak barrels, where the wine is aged for 9 months, during which time stabilisation takes place naturally, without additional treatments. The wine is filtered with a 1-micron (absolute) cartridge filter just prior to bottling.

Revino Postcards From Italy Pinot Grigio Rosé Delle Venezie (DOC) 12.5%

RRP €15.95 (reduced to €11.96 until September)

This delicately flavoured organic Pinot Grigio Rosé from the Veneto has a light rose colour with hints of grey in there. The aromas, immediately attractive, are of peach and apricot. It is the zesty acidity that makes the quick impression on the palate balancing the fruit flavours of this 100% Pinot Grigio. Chilled this down during a sunny day (during the recent heatwave) and think we got the best from it. Very pleasant, refreshing and Highly Recommended.

Lynne Coyle: Combining two of the summer’s most popular wine styles, Pinot Grigio and rosé, this wine comes from a family winemaking project, headed by Roberto Pasqua of our Musella winepartners in the Veneto. The label is a fond representation of retro Italian posters; stylish, elegant and eye catching.

* See also earlier short post on two of the other new wines (including an excellent Novas Viognier) here.

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