My best friend’s wedding
The perfect end to the wedding series would see me deciding on my ideal wedding wine before getting married. Well, as much as I love this blogging business, there’s no way I’m getting married so I can write about myself, so I decided to take advantage of my friends misfortune.
Aaron got hitched at the end of August, so as a farewell to the first in the university gang to lose his freedom of thought, I’ve helped to ease the pain by choosing twelve superb drinking wines to start his collection and help ease the pain with a truly enjoyable wedding gift.
Below is a copy of the notes I included in the case. Aaron and Sarah love their wine, but they would be the first to admit that they aren’t the most knowledgeable on the subject. The only instructions I was given was to choose mostly whites, so I did, with the intention of opening their palate to new varietals and styles.
Farnese Pinot Grigio
Farnese is one of Italy’s best producers. It was voted Italian Winery of the Year in 2007 by the IWSC for the third year running. Lemon, lime and a mineral crispness with a gentle spicy finish.
Lugana Tenuta Trebbiano
An Italian for Chablis fanatics. Grapes are grown on the edge of Lake Garda, on ancient post glacial soils. It has a restrained style, with lovely minerality and a slight saltiness. Very elegant, and just made to go with shell fish.
Like the Earthworks Chardonnay (which I know you love), the Palazzi has no oak influence. It was fermented in 100% stainless steel tanks. Grapes are grown in Piemonte. Crisp, citrus fruit flavours with hints of ripe peach, balanced by lively acidity.
Mirabello Pinot Grigio Sparkling
I think you’ve tried the still version of this. Made from the white Pinot Grigio grape, it has a splash of the red Pinot Nero for a little extra colour. Simply made, with only 24 hours of cold maceration for extra freshness (as opposed to three weeks for many reds).
The world’s top wine experts say that Riesling is the greatest of all white grape varieties. It’s a difficult one to grow and hard to get right, but when they do there are none better. This is seriously good drinking. Riesling has a great ability to acquire the characteristics of where it is grown (aka ‘terroir’). Probably the best white here.
Tussock Sauvignon Blanc
This is typical New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc – my favourite country for this grape variety. Think of cat’s pee on a gooseberry bush. Nettle, elderflower and hints of capsicum layer over a subtle background of tropical fruit characters.
From the Tempranillo grape, this isn’t unlike a typical Rioja. It was one of the stars of one of our wine tastings, punching well above its weight. The winemakers have used American oak to impart subtle flavours of vanilla. Dark fruits and full-bodied.
Albarino is the grape here. A great alternative to Chardonnay or Sauvignon Blanc, this could be the next big thing. The Orballo got me hooked on Spanish whites and it won a silver medal with Decanter, who run the UK’s best wine competition.
In my opinion, this is one of the best Rosés out there. I’m not a big fan of pink, but this one is exceptional. Strong smooth berry and plum flavours, fresh, slightly sweet and lively with a touch of complexity (from partial barrel aging) and a lingering finish.
This is our entry level Chilean Sauvignon, from the organic Sierra Grande winery. Although not as concentrated as its New Zealand counterparts, its fresh, vibrant and zesty. Very aromatic with racy acidity, and ironically, one of our most popular wedding wines.
If you’re not used to drinking Chenin Blanc, this is a good place to start. Soft, rounded and quite ‘chunky’ on the palate. Citrus aromas with tropical fruit flavours, backed by good acidity. Try with seafood, poultry and even mild Indian dishes.
OMG. The world’s most renowned wine critic, Robert Parker, gave this the perfect score. Very few wines in the world have such perfect qualities and ability to age this long. It will peak around 2025 (drink up to 2040+). It’s big and bold, as Australian Shiraz often is. Worth leaving for a special occasion and to be shared only with people that will appreciate it. Cellar somewhere where the temperature won’t fluctuate too much (between 12-15 degrees C). It might be worth buying a thermometer to be safe. Lie it on its side to stop the cork drying out, and when open, decant for at least six hours.