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Mother’s Day wine 2014

wineadvice

Mother's Day wine 2014Keep two things in mind when buying Mother’s Day wine 2014. First, wine as a gift requirea a different apprioach than wine to drink with brunch. A heavy red wine with scrambled eggs, no matter how much Mom likes heavy red wine, may not be the best idea. Second, don’t forget our wine gift-giving guidelines — “Don’t buy someone wine that you think they should like; buy them what they will like.

Hence these suggestions:

Lamberti Vino Spumante NV ($14, sample, 11.5%): Surprisingly pleasant Italian sparkler at a not bad price with sweetish strawberry fruit, decent enough bubbles for spumante, and light body. The quintessential brunch wine.

Feudo Arancio Nero d’Avola Stemmari 2012 ($8, purchased, 13.5%): Solid red made with nero d’avola grape that speaks to how far Sicily has come. Five years ago, I would have raved about its sour cherry fruit and hints of dark herbs. Today, it seems simple, though it’s still a fine value and quite enjoyable.

Jules Taylor Pinot Gris 2012 ($19, purchased, 13.5%): Another quality effort from one of my favorite New Zealand producers. Light and delicate white fruit, far removed from the fruit-forward style of the Pacific Northwest but just as interesting.

Fowles Wine Stone Dwellers Riesling 2011 ($20, sample, $12.9%): Modern style of Australian riesling, with lots of candied lemon balanced by an almost bubbly acidity to make a medium dry wine. Very nicely done, if you don’t mind spending $20 on riesling. And you probably don’t for Mom.

More about Mother’s Day wine:
Mother’s Day wine 2013
Mother’s Day wine 2012
Expensive wine 62: Chamisal Chalifa Chardonnay 2011
Wine of the week: Zenato San Benedetto 2012

Image courtesy of Cheeky Chicago, using a Creative Commons license

Expensive wine 50: Contadi Castaldi Franciacorta Brut NV

ContaldiThe Wine Curmudgeon has never been able to figure out Italian sparkling wine, all those Proseccos and Astis, despite Herculean efforts from people like the Italian Wine Guy. And if those wines baffle me, you can imagine what I think of the newish sparkling moscatos, many of which are made with all the finesse of a 7-Eleven Slurpee.

Not all sparkling wine needs to taste like Champagne (long live cava!), but I appreciate the Champagne structure and style – firm, tight bubbles; a clean, long taste; and the balance between acidity and fruit.

That’s what makes the Castaldi ($21, sample, 12.5%) different from other Italian sparkling wines. It’s made with a couple of Champagne grapes (mostly chardonnay) and made using the Champagne method. The Franciacorta region, near the Swiss border, is the only area in the country where this is done.

And, as with well-made sparkling wine from Spain and elsewhere, it uses those techniques to make a terroir-driven wine. The Castaldi tastes like it comes from Italy  — crisp, small bubbles and a bit of clean apple fruit that’s not a Champagne knockoff that oozes of caramel. Excellently done and much better than I expected.

This is Mother’s Day wine, whether for brunch on Sunday or to toast Mom for another year well done.

More about Mother's Day wine:
Mother's Day wine 2013
Mother's Day wine 2012
Mother's Day wine 2011
Wine of the week: Domaine du Tariquet Classic 2011
Wine of the week: Casteller Brut Rose NV

Mother’s Day wine 2013

Yes, you can buy Mom wine for Mother’s Day. Why not? Doesn’t Mom like wine? Don’t you think she should have some? Keep the wine gift-giving guidelines in mind — “Don’t buy someone wine that you think they should like; buy them what they will like,” as well as these suggestions:

• Regional wine: Mom can drink local, too. St. James Pioneer Red ($11, sample, 12%) is great, cheap regional wine from Missouri. Lots of black fruit, but also earthiness and acidity. Limited availability, but there’s likely a local wine near you that will do the same thing.

Cune Rioja Monopole Blanco ($12, purchased, 13%). The Cune Rioja Blanco is a Hall of Fame candidate, and this Spanish white is even more impressive. Terrific food wine, especially if you’re tired of chardonnay, with white fruit, some white pepper and a pleasant, if shortish, finish.

Tormaresca Chardonnay 2011 ($12, sample, 12.5%). Italian white is amazingly consistent from vintage to vintage, with lemon and apple fruit, a hint of sweetness and a sort of stony finish. Clean and well made, without any of the excess of chardonnay — fake oak, overripe fruit — at this price.

Trivento Amado Sur 2011 ($14, sample, 14%). Well-done malbec blend from Argentina, with lots of sweet red fruit, a little black pepper and even a bit of citrus in the middle. Balanced, but firmly in the new world style.

More about Mother’s Day wine:
Mother’s Day wine 2012
Mother’s Day wine 2011
Wine of the week: Domaine du Tariquet Classic 2011
Wine of the week: Casteller Brut Rose NV

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