Thursday, May 28, 2015

Winey Tasting Notes: Springtime with some Italian Frascati


Spring is finally here in northeast Ohio and if I may say, it took its own sweet time getting here. I know, I know, I shouldn't be surprised, but every year that one last frost warning has me running around the garden throwing towels and sheets on all the new plants and, well, expressing my thoughts about the weather in, um, some colorful words. And that's all I'm going to admit to say about that. 

My friends at Banfi wines, being the optimistic folks (and not Ohio residents)  that they are, had sent me a trio of wines to sip for spring. And although when I sipped the first one of these wines, it wasn't what you'd call "spring" outside, I sipped anyway. I'm no quitter. 

The first wine I chose to try was Fontana Candida's Terre dei Grifi Frascati DOC (2013, 13%, Lazio, Italy). It's a blend of 50% Malvasia Bianca di Candia, 30% Trebbiano Toscano, 10% Greco, 10% Malvasia del Lazio (as an aside here, wine from the Frascati DOC of Italy has to have at least 70% Malvasia Bianca di Candia and/or Trebbiano Toscano). 

The word Frascati took me right back to the Winey Family's amazing trip to Italy last summer, where I first tasted Frascati at dinner with some of our dearest college friends.  Winey Tasting Notes: When In Rome....Drink Frascati

That night, the Frascati was a sparkler, but this one is a still wine. It started off with a nose of pear and kiwi and followed with a taste of apple, pear and some faint nutmeg and cinnamon. I was rather surprised by this, given that it's stainless steel fermented, but the winemakers say it "rests on its lees for 4 months". Lees are the dead yeast cells and other stuff that are left over after a wine ferments. They can be removed after fermentation, or left in to give a wine richness and more flavor. So it makes sense that this Frascati has a bit deeper in the pear and apple flavors. 

This was not a bad thing, by the way. I loved the fruit flavors with the touch of creaminess to them. Unlike an Italian Pinot Grigio, this wine feels softer in the mouth, but unlike a big oakey Chardonnay, the oak and tastiness doesn't take over. It hits nicely in the middle of these. 

Buy this wine if you don't like a big oakey white, but are looking for a bit more smoothness than a Pinot Grigio or a Sauvignon Blanc. It would go great with chicken and fish dishes or salads and grilled veggies. It retails for around $13, so it's a totally affordable spring buy. 

Cheers! 

I was given this wine as a sample. The opinions about it are all my own.


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