News from around Australia
June 2019 Wine of the Month Review
We were recently guests of friends on their sailing boat in the Greek Ionian islands. This provided us with opportunities to taste many indigenous wines from a number of islands including a Maximilian Dry White made from Muscat of Alexandria. The aroma is more like a 'regular' Muscat while the palate shows the attenuated characteristics that we generally recognise in wines made from this grape; Alfega White 2016; Sauvignon Blanc, Malagousia, Robola Shiraz.
All the wines were young - less than two years old and generally in the economical category - less than 20 euro.
Overall our impression was that the day of the Retsina is over as Greek winemakers now generally use modern techniques to produce fresh, stable wines which display both their terroir and grape variety proudly.
The following week, in the Veneto we tasted wines from the producer Livio Felluga. He died recently at the age of 101 last year. His white, called Sharis, is a blend of Chardonnay and Ribolla Gialla grapes. We also tried a Veritigo 2015 which is a blend of Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon (about 20 euro). Both represent terrific value for money. Livio was the first producer who brought stainless steel to Italy. On his grave ‘German technology, French finesse and Fruita Friulana di Qualita’
We completed the Italian sojourn with a drive to the Dolomites up Val Sugana to Lana. Then took the funicular up mount Vigilius where we had a delightful lunch on a terrace overlooking the valley. The lunchtime wine was a Moscato Giallo and it is this wine which will be the pick of the month. While the wine is quite dark it starts with an aroma which is distantly Moscato augmented with tones of wild lilac, jasmine and apple flowers.
This follows through more quietly on the palate with solid acidity and finishes dry. This is a refreshing wine and just what you need for an alfresco lunch on a hot day.
At dinner we had a sparking treat – a Movia Pura Rose 2008 from Slovenia – just across the border.
The extraordinary feature of this sparking is that following two fermentations the wine is bottled, stored and sold upside down It is up to us to place the bottle in a tub of cold water and remove the seal to disgorge the sediment. Fun and something special. The wine on the night was intense both in colour and taste and showed some oxidation. A singular wine worth another look next time.