From one grape or a blend ?

Wine from one grape or a blend…it’s what’s in the glass that counts!

So it’s March, and spring is on its way. To relocate ourselves slightly further from winter, I suggest some bottled sunshine. A red wine from the hills of Montalcino, Italy, then a Greek white.

A brief story about appellations of origin

With their strict specifications defining the rules of yield, grape variety and geographically limited zone, the controlled appellations of origin (AOC – appellation d’origine contrôlée) or name of origin controlled and guaranteed (DOCG – dénomination d’origine contrôlée et garantie) are sometimes a guarantee of quality.

They dictate the style of wine from a particular region. While that can be an advantage for consumers, the rules can become restrictive for a winemaker who wants to bring another aspect to their wine. The Super Toscans are an example of this.

In the ’70s, Antinori wanted to push the established standards by adding international vines (particularly those of Bordeaux) into the vineyards of Tuscany.

Ca’ del Pazzo, which means “place touched by the sun”

Caparzo is a big producer of Brunello (DOCG) in the province of Sienna on the hills of Montalcino, in Tuscany. In this appellation zone, the land parcels are among the highest in quality and Sangiovese Grosso is the king of these.

However, this estate also produces a vintage with 50 percent cabernet-sauvignon in IGP (indication géographique protégée). It should be noted that this vintage is only found in the best years. The 2014 brims with jammy ripe cherries plus a cedar note thanks to its barrel-aging.

In the mouth, it is generous and textured with smooth tannins. This wine can hold its own and pairs wonderfully well with a pork loin prepared with mushrooms and dried tomatoes.

Another IGP, a Greek wine from Papagiannakos. This wine is made from savatiano, an indigenous grape variety long considered rather uninteresting in terms of flavour. However, the intervention of a talented winemaker changed this perception.

Using lower yields and a harvest at full maturity, the estate changed the image of savatiano. A saline and floral side mixed with fruit, with a light fizzy quality. Freshness and good length in the mouth. Good on its own as a pre-dinner drink or with a dish of Greek-style cod.

Enjoy your tastings!

Caparzo, Ca’del pazzo, 2014   $33   SAQ 12721809

Savatiano, Domaine Papagiannakos, 2017  $16.55   SAQ 11097451


Lynda Lavertu48 Posts

Toujours tout sourire, Lynda se passionne pour le fabuleux monde du vin et tout ce qui saura plaire aux épicuriens. Sommelière diplômée, elle travaille à la SAQ et partage avec nous ses plus récentes trouvailles. / The ever-smiling Lynda is passionate about the fabulous world of wine and everything that will bring pleasure to epicures. A graduate sommelière – wine steward – she works at the SAQ and shares with us her most recent discoveries.


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