Grape Love: Pinot Noir

When people ask me which is my favorite grape, I hesitate saying Pinot Noir. It might be because of Sideways. I don’t really want to be mistaken with getting my wine inspiration from a movie; although in reality I don’t really care. I love light red wines with subtle herbal and mineral flavors, and I love full blanc de noirs champagnes. I love French Pinot from Bourgogne with some age and complexity in them, and I love fresh young and slightly salty Pinot from the US west coast. A Pinot seldom lets me down, although it is often quite pricey. However, there are some good exceptions: German Spätburgunders (late harvested Pinot) are on the rise and very good value for money. The price represents the effort that goes into growing Pinot, so I thought I would do a dip into the basics.  Continue reading “Grape Love: Pinot Noir”

Grape Love: Malvasia

When I write these pieces on specific varieties, I try to bring out some small or less known grapes that are somehow significant to my wine interest at that time. With eastern Europe raising it’s profile as a wine region (I guess Eastern Europe is many regions), Malvasia has been the grape in my glass often this spring. What sparked my grape-love towards Malvasia was probably some of the natural Italian sparkling wines produced with the ancestral method. There is a lot of interesting nature wines (including orange wines) carrying Malvasia on the market. The variety is ancient: incumbent to Greece and the Mediterranean, but widely spread out to Italy and Spain as well as overseas. It is also the main variety used for making one out of four different types of fortified Madeira.  Continue reading “Grape Love: Malvasia”

Grape Love: Pinot Meunier, the Challenger in Champagne

Today I thought I would write about a relationship that has been developing for some time now: my growing love for the least known of the three main grape varietals used for Champagne, Pinot Meunier. We all know Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, but Meunier as a grape is often left in the shadows. It has perhaps traditionally been considered more as a “filler” instead of the leading grape. However, Meunier can produce a charismatic and an absolutely wonderful champagne just o its own. Continue reading “Grape Love: Pinot Meunier, the Challenger in Champagne”