Vinum Vine

|Tuesday| Red Varietals

Posted in Wine by Vinum Vine on March 27, 2013

Cabernet Sauvignon : King of red wine.  Oak aging. Wonderful flavors:  blackcurrants, blackberry, chocolate, tar, leather.   Fresh, easy-drinking fruit forward styles to intensely big, dense and complex wines with firm tannins.  Being challenged by Merlot.  Look for the ones from Napa Valley, Bordeaux, Australia, Chile, Washington State, and Argentina.

Merlot:  Everyday red wine.  Cherry, plum, currants with hints of cedar prominent with oak aging.  Look for the ones from Bordeaux, Pomerol and Saint-Émilion.  Full bodied, tannic, friendly, soft, fruit forward.

Petite Sirah:  Cousin to Syrah, produces a deep-colored, robust, peppery wine that packs plenty of tannins and has good aging ability.  Not as popular as Cabernet Sauvignon, but has big followers who like big, full-bodied wines.  In vogue during the 1970s.

Pinot Noir:  Elegant, refine, exotic, velvety, sensual, perfumed, spicy, earthly vidily fruity, mouth-filling texture.  Flavors of ripe red fruit, cherry, chocolate, toast, and spices.  Look for the ones in Burgundy.

Syrah:  (Shiraz in Australia)  Easy to grow and produces wines for easy drinking, fresh stye to intesnse, full-bodied, highly  concentrated style.   Dense red, dark berry, violet, tar, pepper, and spice.  Check out the ones from Rhône.

Zinfandel:  American wine that can rival Cabernet Sauvignon.  Flavors include black and red fruit, spice, pepper, tar, licorice, and wood.  Zinfandel is produced in three distinct styles.  The first is fresh and fruity, easy drinking style that offers charm and balance with light tannin, followed by medium-bodied, fuller flavored Zinfandel with noticeable spiciness and ripe tannin.  This is followed by the big, concentrated and powerful style with intense fruit and unbelievable richness.  Find the ones from California.

Malbec:  Argentina red grape once use as a blending grape in Bordeaux.   Fruity flavors of blackberry, blueberry, and black raspberry and supple tannin, with nuances of violets and toasty oak in the more expensive offerings.  Pairs perfectly with grilled meats, game and robust, spicy dishes.

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