Carafoli’s Volpebianco (bottle name) Pignoletto (grape & region)
Our white wine this month is a somewhat obscure Italian Sparkling wine, Pignolleto, both a grape and a region. It is non-vintage, meaning wines from several vintages are blended to maintain consistency. In addition to Pignoletto, this wine has small amounts of Chardonnay, Riesling, and an Italian varietal, Montuni. The winery, Carafoli, has been family run for three generations. It is located near Sorbara, a hilly inland region in northern Italy, known for producing delicate sparkling wine.
In the glass this wine is a rich golden yellow, with medium fine bubbles. One the nose you will find ripe yellow apples—if you’ve ever had an apple tree in your yard this wine will remind you of autumn, fruit fallen on the ground. On the palate ripe apples mix with red pear, balanced with medium acidity and a mild honey sweetness. Would go great with pork and sauerkraut, or some funky blue cheese and dates.
Jip Jip Rocks Sparking Shiraz
Our red wine this month comes from Padthaway, Australia, some six hours west of Melbourne. It is a warm climate region that takes advantage of cool coastal winds. The winery, Jip Jip Rocks, is a family owned estate. Three sons manage the property, cattle, and wine making. The wine we have from them is something rather unusual: a non-vintage sparkling Shiraz. The wine is a gorgeous crimson, nearly opaque, with fine bubbles. On the nose you will find rich aromas of plumb and hints of rosemary. On the palate this wine has lots of dark fruit: a mix of black berry, cherry, and plumb. It has a rich texture which brings out chocolate and mocha notes in the fruit. There’s something spicy on the palate as well, like fresh orange zest. This wine has moderate alcohol, light acidity, and low residual sugar. Would be excellent with chocolate mousse.
Happy Holidays, & Cheers!