Saturday, 26 October 2013

Domenico Clerico Barbera d'Alba Trevigne 2006 (Barbera 100%)

Dark ruby red with light red rims. The nose is dominated by baked fruits, a hint of licorice, blackberry and cassis. In the mouth, strong, sharp tannins with a little bit astringency. Full bodied. The after taste has a touch of vanilla and chocolate. One of my favorite regions, one of my favorite varieties... A very pleasant wine by a good producer, like the Villa Matilde Taurasi... These are serious stuff... Not available in Finland.

Tasted among some other wines during a blind tasting.

Villa Matilde Tenute Alta DOCG Taurasi 2008 (Aglianico 100%)

Dark ruby red with purple rims. A very fruity nose, red forest berries among jam-like baked fruits notes with a small touch of woodiness. Sweetish in the mouth, in the mid palate, there is a nice touch of clove. The tannins are harsh, a typical Italian rusticity there is. The strong fruity structure is made up by the tannin and a character. This full bodied wine had a nice, long final with a satisfaction smile on the consumer´s face... Not available in Finland.

Sunday, 13 October 2013

Austrian Wine Tasting Helsinki 08.10.2013

Last Tuesday, I was exploring the Austrian wines in a very wide range for the Finnish scale in Restaurant Sipuli which is nearby the Uspenski Cathedral in the heart of Helsinki.
Few weeks ago, I received an e-mail signed by the names Marketing Manager Barbara Arbeithuber and the Marketing Assistant Petra Kotlan. I was grateful to them for inviting me but after the tasting when I got back home, I was not only grateful to them but also extremely impressed by the Austrian wines.

Austria in Finnish is "Itävalta" which literally means "East Power". Such a masculine naming right? But for their wines, no, with few exceptions, it is not working at all... Such elegant, chic, characteristic, charming wines Austria has that from the first sip to the last, they state a nice smile of satisfaction on the face. It is beautiful, it is feminine, it is charming, it is entertaining, it is intelligent, it is caring, it has, "personality".

During the tasting, I had the chance to taste indigenious varieties of Austria such as Grüner Veltliner, Sylvaner, Zweigelt, Blaufränkisch, St. Laurent and international varieties like Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Merlot and more, as monocepage and coupage. The coupage wines were mostly good examples but some of them really resembled wines made of industrial/commercial concerns. But only some of them. After all, when I left the tasting, the only thing remaining in my mind was how great characteristics the wines had.

If you would like to know the producers and companies which attended to that event, here is the link for the booklet of Helsinki Tasting:;jsessionid=6FD3E8E56C39400B96C28C6D750E4CA9

Uspenski Cathetral on top of us "like a boss"

Birgit Braunstein
I have visited the stands of several producers and I am totally surprised how producers can reflect themselves in their wines. There are "7 Elements of Uniqueness" attributed for Austrian wines and one of them is stated as "The People". That is not just a show of fancy words, that is true, totally true. I have met some of the representatives or producers of the wines and I felt the visions of the people at my palate. For example Birgit Braunstein. When I started to taste her wines while listening her kind voice and watching her warm and friendly eyes, I could see that, this stylish and kind person was "the mother of the wines". As much as she spoke and I taste, the wines became a part of her, or she became a part of them. There was a strong reflection/relation between. The same words I can really say for Ilse Maier of Geyerhof. Great wines, elegance, kindness, the warmth and care of a woman´s friendly eyes... She is definitely another "mother of wines". Geyerhof is also an Organic Wine producer, unfortunately, they are both not available in Finnish Monopoly yet.

Beautiful Design

Esterházy was another producer with great wines presented by the charismatic representative Susanne Janotka. The wines were very "Austrian" in sense of the significant character and elegance. But there is one more thing, that the great label designs. The bottle design is one of the most important reasons for the average consumer and Esterházy has great modern designs; it is not "new", it is "modern"( as everything "new" is called "modern" on these days, nonsense). Here 2 bottles to see, from the producer´s internet site (Click on the pictures if you want to see bigger).

Among the producers that I had time to visit, H.u.M. Hofer, Winzer Krems, Umathum and Zantho are all very good producers for their price-quality ratio with great floral notes, cherry/berry aromas, high acidity with a satisfying minerality. Quite a lot of the producers do not have importers in Finland yet, so I hope in the near future, we can have a wider range of Austrian beauty.

Another Beauty
I left the tasting event with a smile on my face and some new visions with a deep understanding of how one can put his/her personality into the wine. I got a better vision of indigenous varieties too which made me very greedy for Austrian varieties like Grüner Veltliner and Blaufränkisch. For sure I knew that Austria has big, crispy, delicious whites with high levels of acidity and minerality but I did not know that they had developed a very high level of quality for red wines, especially Pinot Noir. Pinot Noir is such a variety that you might hate it if you taste a lil bit lower quality one and the PNs in Finland which are under 15€ are usually such examples of PN that can make one hate it. So, look for some Austrian one if you want to have an elegant Pinot Noir, if you do not have enough budget for a Gevrey-Chambertin. After all, I will spend more time in front of the Austrian stand in the monopoly stores. I suggest you the same! Thanks the AWMB again!

May your glass be filled with Austrian wine. Greetings.

Thursday, 10 October 2013

Austrian Wine Tasting in Helsinki by the Austrian Wine Marketing Board

2 days ago, last Tuesday, I have attended the Austrian Wine Tasting organized by the Austrian Wine Marketing Board in Restaurant Sipuli (Ravintola Sipuli) and I am totally impressed by the elegant, chic, characteristic, charismatic Austrian wine. Soon I will write about the tasting event and the wines I tried.

May your glass be filled with Austrian wine. Greetings.

Tuesday, 1 October 2013

Soundtrack to your glass of intelligent wine:

While a bottle of Brunello, which is unexpectedly feminine for an Italian, talks to me tonight, I salute the master Neruda matching wine and music at the same time:

"I like on the table,
when we´re speaking,
The light of a bottle
of intelligent wine."

Pablo Neruda

Matching Music:

The Cinematic Orchestra - The Awakening Of A Woman

While the wine goes through the mouth with music into the ear, the beauty of the night is there with its pure starkly nudity.

May your glass be filled with happiness. Greetings.