Gabe's View

Wine: Reviews, Thoughts & Culture

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Soave Classico

Santi - 2010 Soave Classico DOC “Vigneti di Monteforte”

Santi has a long history in the Veneto that dates back to 1843. The Santi 2010 Soave Classico DOC “Vigneti di Monteforte” was produced using estate fruit as well as some purchased under long term contracts with neighbors throughout the region. This offering is a blend of Garganega (90%) and Trebbiano di Soave (10%). Fermentation and aging took place in stainless steel over a period of 7 months. Prior to bottling this wine undergoes a light filtration. This Soave has a suggested retail price of $16.99. Aromas of nectarine and fleur de orange fill the enticing and lively nose of this 2010 Soave and a hint of ginger pops in as well. From the first sip this wine is juicy, refreshing and appealing with a fruity, layered mid-palate. Fleshy white melon and stone fruits in droves are the stars of the show here. Hints of herbs play an underlying role and add layers of complexity along with copious spice characteristics. Hazelnut flavors along with vanilla bean lead the finish which displays fine persistence. This well balanced wine has crisp acidity and terrific balance.

This is a wine that should please a wide array of white wine lovers. It’s thirst quenching and fruit forward so it’ll appeal to the masses and it also features more than sufficient complexity to keep the more vociferous wine lovers happy on a hot summer day. Drink this one on its own or pair it with light, warm weather foods, in either case an excellent Soave for the money

Guerrieri Rizzardi - 208 Soave Classico D.O.C.

I've been glad to see more and more Soave on US shelves of late. The average wine consumer thinks of Pinot Grigio first in terms of Italian white wines. But over time with any luck Soave will gain ground as another attractive, well priced option. Today I'm going to look at an example from 2008. The 2008 Guerrieri Rizzardi Soave Classico D.O.C. was produced using fruit sourced at the Rizzardi hillside estate vineyard. Winemaker Giuseppe Rizzardi chose to blend Chardonnay (20%) in with the Garganega (80%). After fermentation this wine spent 3-6 months on the lees in cement vats. 2,000 Cases of this wine were produced and the suggested retail price is $15.

Aromas of lemon-lime zest and granny smith apple fill the fresh nose of this 2008 Soave. The palate is full flavored and provides nice complexity.  Pineapple, asian pear, drried mango, white peach and hints of ginger are the most prominent flavors. Lite mineral notes, tangerine and white pepper all dot the medium length finish which is clean, crisp and refreshing. This is a wine whose flavors beckon you back to the glass for another sip. Excellent acidity keeps things balanced and helps make this a natural food wine.

This wine will work quite well with soft cheeses, appetizers and lighter chicken dishes. That said it's quite good on its own and makes an excellent apertif. It's light enough not to bog anyone down before a meal. The Guerrieri Rizzardi also has more than sufficient compexity for it's price point to both keep people interested and to represent a good value.

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Cantina del Castello - 2008 Soave Classico DOC

One of my goals for 2010 is to taste a greater number of Italian wines. Hopefully that will also lead to a higher number of Italian wines of all types and price ranges being covered here at Gabe's View. That said it's fitting that the first post of the year is about a wine from Italy. The Soave region is known for its white wines. The primary varietal is Garganega. Within the overall Soave designation are three more specific types of Soave. Today I'll look at one with the Soave Classico label. Cantina del Castello 2008 Soave is made from fruit sourced in the Classico region. Vineyard sites for this wine sit 200 to 250 meters above sea level. This offering is a blend of Garganega (90%) and Trebbiano di Soave (10%). Fermentation was accomplished in stainless steel. Two months of bottle age occurred prior to release. Just under 8,500 cases of this vintage were produced and the suggested retail price is $19.50.

Orchard and citrus fruit aromas intermingle with a hint of chamomile in the expressive nose of this wine. Lemon ice notes, mango, and pineapple are all key components of the full flavored palate. The finish shows lemon creme, vanilla, white pepper and an overall oily note that clings to the back of the throat. This wine has excellent acidity and will be a terrific match for lighter foods. Creamy cheeses, salads, and appetizers in general are good bets.

What stood about to me about this Soave is the combination of easy drinkability and complexity. Tasting it over a period of a couple of hours this selection has numerous layers that sneak up as you contemplate this wine and let it wash over you. A lovely wine and a good starting point if you're looking to venture outside of Pinot Grigio.

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