MNO Alphabet Series 3-PackRegular price $60.00
We continue our exploration of off the beaten path grape varietals A through Z. This pack features grapes that start with MNO--Monica (red), Negroamaro (red), and Orangetraub (white).
This off the beaten path set of grapes all have something in common. They all are grown almost exclusively in one area of the world (Sardinia, Salento, Vienna/Austria).
Cardedu 'Praja' Monica di Sardegna Sardinia, Italy 2019
Although the Monica grape is now exclusively grown on Sardinia, it is thought to be of Spanish origin and is likely to have been brought here by Spanish conquistadors in the 13th century, when a considerable part of Italy was ruled by the Spanish crown. It's rare to find a bottle of 100% Monica outside of Sardinia so we're thankful that PortoVino Imports has this gem in it's portfolio.
Sergio Loi, Cardeau's fourth generation, ferments with native yeasts in cavernous cement tanks under the house. The result is a rustic light bodied red wine with spicy, herbal notes, and just a touch of fruit.
Perrini Negroamaro Puglia (Salento), Italy 2019
The grape is of uncertain origin and some believe it was introduced by the Greeks. For centuries, the grape has be considered native to the Salento penisula, visually known as the heel of the boot. Its name derives from the dialect "niuru maru" for its black colour and slightly bitter notes . Wines made from the grape tend to be rustic in character, combining fragrant fruit with an earthy bitterness. Recent DNA analysis suggests that it is loosely related to the white grape, Verdicchio (Verdeca), and Sangiovese.
The Perrini version of the grape is fresh and savory with the characteristic pip in the finish. While more medium bodied, this wine will balance full flavors and rich textures in your dishes.
Zahel 'Orange T' Orangetraube (Vienna, Austria) 2020
Vienna is the only world capital producing significant quantities of wine within its city limits and Zahel is the only Austrian winery that produces a wine composed of 100% Orangetraube. How cool is that for off the beaten path? Orangetraube, which literally translates to "Orange Grape." This rare aromatic white grape gets this name from having skins that take on a slightly orange tint when fully ripe.
Zahel is a an organic estate with 4th generation winemaker, Richard Zahel at the helm. Fermented in stainless steel, we taste mandarin, white peach, apricot, a touch of floral, a smidgeon of minerality, and zippy acidity that keeps it light and refreshing. Maybe think dry Riesling meets Pinot Gris?