Varietal: white wine blend (20% Torrontés, 80% Pedro Gimenez)
Location: Mendoza, Argentina
Alcohol Content: 13.3%
Let me just start out by saying that this wasn't my favorite white wine ever. I tend to like blends because some straight up grape varietals are too intense for me. I grabbed this cheap bottle, from the local beer & wine shop) in an attempt to eek out one more bottle from our weekly grocery budget. I was intrigued because it was made of grapes that I had never tasted. Torrontés & Pedro Gimenez (I did have the fleeting thought that, perhaps, Pedro Gimenez was not a grape at all, but the poor fellow who fell into one of the vats at the vineyard). Either way, I wanted to try it.
Upon smelling it, the first thing I got was VERY strong alcohol, botanicals, perfume, and paint thinner (this was interesting because it made me think of a Sauternes that I tried). On the palette it was musky grape, ALCOHOL, dry and very, very tart apple. So tart it was bordering on an almost cranberry flavor. The finish was the best part, despite some intense afterburn in my belly from all that alcohol. Very sour green apple, not the candy kind, the crab apple kind that grow wild, here in New England. The apple finish lasted for a pretty long time.
In honesty, I found this wine a little hard to drink. It is very, very tart, and not in a good mouth puckering way. Heavy alcohol in the nose was a turn-off that almost made me not want to taste it. But it's wine, and in the end I drink what I pour! I think the tartness of the cranberry flavor was a bit much for me, and the alcohol burn is a little annoying. I did like the childhood nostalgia of the crab apple on the finish. This would be a good second of the night party wine, when a 9% Riesling just isn't cutting it for the purpose at hand.
I had a second glass of this with pizza, and it did improve, but only marginally. The contrast of the tartness in the wine made the sweetness of the pizza sauce all the more enjoyable. However, I wasn't looking forward to each sip. I'd drink and then dive for the pizza. It may be that the pizza was so good because of how marginal the wine is. I read that plantings of the Pedro Gimenez grape are on the decline in South America, and all other things being equal, I think I know why.
I used the remainder of the bottle to make the sauce in my previous post, and it was fine. In that context.
Thanks for reading!
Thanks for reading!