Saturday, 6 April 2013

A Memorable Wine Experience with Wine Talk (ep 2)

And here's the rest of my story. Apologies for the long suspense...
David Stephan, Wine Talk's sommelier, revealed the 6 bottles of wine that we will go through. There were 2 whites, 1 rosé and 3 reds.


1st wine: Monte da Peceguina – White Wine
Region and Country – Alentejo, Portugal
Grape - 60% Antão Vaz, 20% Verdelho, 10% Roupeiro, 10% Arinto
Vintage – 2010
David's Notes:
Monte de Peceguina is a collection of wines from the Herdade de Malhadinha Nova estate, based in the Alentejo region, in South Portugal. What began as a dream for the Soares Family (João and Paulo, along with João´s wife Rita), became reality in the late 90’s when they discovered that deserted farm in the inland Alentejo region. After planting their 1st vines in 2000, they built a Top-of-the-Art winery in 2003. Combining modern & traditional technics in the winery, they focused mostly on local, traditional grapes, used to the extreme conditions (Alentejo is one of the hottest and driest region in Europe) while maintaining a good level of freshness and acidity. All works in the vineyards and other plantations (olive trees, hay, corn fields) are farmed with an organic approach, with upmost respect of the terroirs.
The Branco (white) cuvée is a classic blend of local varieties. It showcases a very aromatic expression of the grapes, with citrus, peach, apricot and floral notes; intense flavors but balanced with great acidity. Enjoy with prawns, rich fishes or grilled white meat.
MY VERDICT on Monte da Peceguina White: Great wine! Quite easy to like and very suitable to those who prefer light or low alcohol taste. And David also mentioned that this wine label is exclusive to Wine Talk in Malaysia. Meaning you won’t find it anywhere else within the country but through them.
2nd wine: Arthur Metz Pinot - White Wine  





Region and Country - Alsace, France
Grape - 100% Pinot Gris
Vintage – 2007
David's Notes:
Maison Arthur Metz have been based since 1904 in the Village of Marlenheim, in the northern entrance of the famous ‘Route Des Vins’, which follow the Alsace wine regions from North to South. Since its creation, they have been one of the major promoters of the wines from this majestic region across the World. Alsace, situated in the North-East side of France, across the border from Germany, produces mainly white wines, due to the cooler climate, less sun exposure, but also very dry condition and amazing arrays of terroirs, which help develop a palette of flavors and complexity across each wine.
Pinot Gris and Pinot Grigio are exactly the same grapes, meanwhile present different characteristics. Pinot Grigio are picked up earlier, and offer crisp, light and fresh wines. Pinot Gris on the other side is left longer to mature on the vines, and displays fruitier, richer and more concentrated flavors.
This wine is a great example: It is generous, displays classic peach and apricot flavors, with a touch of honey and minerality. Enjoy it with dishes in cream sauce, either fish or white meats, or try it with slightly spicy dishes, they can handle some heat too.
MY VERDICT on Arthur Metz Pinot Gris: Ladies and gentlemen, I've found my favorite wine! I've been trying different white wines for the past few weeks and this, so far, is a seriously must-have stock! It's sweet and light and smooth to the mouth. Wonderful aromas! Some of the other bloggers kept refilling their glasses... 
3rd wine: Monte de Peceguina – Rosé Wine




Region and Country – Alentejo, Portugal
Grape – Touriga Nacional, Aragonês, Tinta Miuda
Vintage – 2010
David’s Notes:
The Rosé cuvée is a blend of popular local varieties; very clean aroma with good fruit, great evidence of red fruit aromas. It demonstrates great expression and smoothness in the mouth. Young and round with fruit in the beginning; it’s a very friendly wine, best match with a BBQ selection, light meats dishes.
MY VERDICT on Monte da Peceguina Rosé:
It’s nice and easy. I didn’t taste much fruits or other stuff, though. I found the alcohol more prominent or maybe I’m not used to this type of wine yet as I am still on my whites.






4th wine:  Finca Las Moras, 'Pacha Mama' Organic Malbec
 

Region and Country – Mendoza, Argentina 2011
Grape - 100% Malbec
Vintage - 2011
David's Notes:
Finca Las Moras is the pioneer winery in the production of high-end wines in San Juan since the vineyard conversion in 1993. The name originates from the blackberry bushes present in the estates located in the three main valleys of San Juan. The blackberries are called “moras” in Spanish. Malbec grapes come originally from the Bordeaux region and were imported to Argentina in the mid-19th Century. Malbec is now a secondary grape in Bordeaux but has thrived in Argentina to become the national iconic red grape variety. The Pacha Mama series comes from organically-grown grapes, which means that they have never been in contact with chemicals like pesticides or herbicides. This is a feature that I cherish, and we will offer more organic wines in the future. Finca Las Moras produces a great, flavorful wine, with intense colour and body. A good match with grilled steaks, duck breast, or rich meat stews.
MY VERDICT on Pacha Mama Organic Malbec:
I’m not much into red wines but it was a surprise that I wasn’t repulsed by this one. It was a sweet and good wine. The others liked it as well.


5th wine: De Bortoli ‘Family Selection’ Cabernet-Merlot
 

Country – South Australia
Grape – 50% Cabernet, 50% Merlot
Vintage - 2008
David’s Notes:
Created in 1928 by Italian immigrants Vittorio and Giuseppina De Bortoli, the domain is now leaded by the 3rd generation of descendants, which established De Bortoli's reputation for premium wine including icon dessert wine Noble One and the Yarra Valley wines, in the Victoria Region. Members of the ‘Australia's First Families’ an association formed by some of Australia's oldest and most respected wine families, they focus on careful site selection, sustainable approach in the vineyards in order to get an exceptional fruit quality throughout their all collection of wines.
This generous wine shows sweet and vibrant fruit on the fleshy palate with soft mouth -coating tannins, Sweet fragrant aromas of blackberries with underlying mint and hints of milk chocolate oak. Pair it with grilled steaks and pepper sauce.
MY VERDICT on DB Cabernet Merlot:
Quite nice, I’d say. The tannins felt soft and smooth in the mouth. It went pretty delicious with The Pressroom’s serving of cold cuts. Yummm…  

Last wine (sniff, sniff): Monte de Peceguina – Red Wine
David decanting our last wine, Monte da Peceguina
Region and Country – Alentejo, Portugal
Grape – 35% Aragonês, 30% Alicante Bouschet, 15% Touriga Nacional, 10% Syrah, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon
Vintage - 2010
David’s Notes:
Monte de Peceguina is a collection of wines from the Herdade de Malhadinha Nova estate, based in the Alentejo region, in South Portugal. What began as a dream for the Soares Family (João and Paulo, along with João´s wife Rita), became reality in the late 90’s when they discovered that deserted farm in the inland Alentejo region. After plantings their 1st vines in 2000, they build a Top-of-the-Art winery in 2003. Combining modern & traditional technics in the winery, they focus mostly on local, traditional grapes, used to the extreme conditions (Alentejo is one of the hottest and driest region in Europe) while maintaining a good level of freshness and acidity. All works in the vineyards and other plantations (olive trees, hay, corn fields) are farmed with an organic approach, with upmost respect of the terroirs.
The Tinto (red) cuvée is made from local varieties, blended with a dash of more famous ones. Oak aged for about 7 months, it shows very lively and fruity aromas, with refreshing notes of berries, plums and red ripe fruit. In the mouth, the wine is full-body, but still very smooth and fresh with silky tannins, balanced with a good structure. Enjoy with roasted beef, grilled lamb chops or a nice cheese platter.
MY VERDICT on Monte da Peceguina Red Wine:
This is the best among the 3 red wines for me. The taste is invigorating and the tannins felt great in the mouth.
David also mentioned a great way to learn more about wines and expand our palate. It's a unique offering from Wine Talk called the Wine Club. Apparently, this is something popular in Europe and the US wherein members of the club receive a case of wines on a regular basis. You simply choose the type of wine you want to receive (whites only, reds only, whites & reds, or a mixed of both plus rosé), the frequency (every month or every 2 months), the quantity (6 or 12 bottles), and voilà! Your case of wines will be delivered to your address automatically. Another great thing is that the price of the wine case every time will be the same: RM428 for 6 bottles and RM788 for 12 bottles.
I think this is a wonderful service. The wine case will also be sent together with tasting notes from David so you will know more about what you're drinking. You can read through while having a glass of wine. You can also write down your own notes as there are spaces provided for you to write on. So you can actually remember what you experienced with each wine. And share it with friends (or impress someone, maybe your boss or whoever, yeah). 
Overall, the event was really exquisite. Now, I have 6 new labels to add to my list of 'familar, tried and tested wines'. Thanks to Wine Talk and The Pressroom for the wonderful experience.
And my journey into wine goes on. Cheers, everyone!!!