Sparkling Red Wines from around the world
This week we’ll look at a new style of wine that, like most new wines, is firmly rooted in tradition. A lot of you probably haven’t encountered this eclectic style, but several examples can be found at almost any wine retailer.
If you’re headed to central Arkansas, The January eWine Samplings will be the second week of the month on Jan. 9 at Cajun’s Wharf in Little Rock and Jan. 10 at Oak Street Bistro in Conway.
My newsletter “Wine 102,” is distributed free to the public via a network of over two dozen wine retailers around the state. Go to brucecochran.com for a list
Try a new wine this week!
A new category of wines
There’s a whole new category of wines out there that you might not have encountered, but it’s gained enough of a following that just about any major wine retailer around the country has them.
Sparkling red wines seems an unlikely choice to some, but so did New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc ten years ago or Pinot Grigio twenty years ago!
The first one that I remember was several years back, a delicious, slightly sweet Italian red sparkler from Banfi, named Brachetto d’Aqui. This wine from Brachetto grapes grown near the Piedmont town of Aqui Terme has long been a favorite in its native land.
Then there was Sparkling Shiraz from Australia. A lot of people predicted great success for this dry example of a sparkling red, and it, too, has several fans. Peter Rumball is one name seen locally, but at a price over $25 per bottle some people haven’t tried it yet.
Even Gallo makes a red sparkling wine now, under their Ballatore label.
A few years ago I started seeing a wine in Italian restaurants, in the foothills of the Apennine Mountains south of Milan and north of Florence. Its berry-like flavors tasted very much like taking a handful of ripe strawberries, raspberries and cherries and just cramming them into your mouth. Lovely red/purple color, lightly sweet and semi-sparkling, it was so delightful that people with me kept asking if they could get it back home.
After about a dozen or so groups had this reaction, I took action and got the necessary permits to make it available here. It’s now in four states, and if you know me you probably know this wine, Rosa di Rosa. Nearly every wine retailer in the state sells it and it retails in the $10-$15 range.
The now famous Rosa di Rosa!!!!