Asda Brings The World “Progrigio”

Italy, Sparkling, Uncategorized

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I saw this one in the press this last week just gone, and I reminded myself about it today as I was chatting with a winemaker from Friuli, the spiritual home of top drawer Pinot Grigio. Asda, one of the big four supermarkets in the UK, have devised an interesting way of getting around the rising price of the UK’s tipple of the decade, Prosecco…

Ever Heard Of Arneis Before? That’ll Change Very Soon!

Italy, Sparkling, Whites

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So yesterday I was talking about a trip the wife and I made to a local winery round here. I spent the whole post talking about the building, which I’m hoping wasn’t as boring as it sounds now I’m reading that back to myself! Let’s have a do at talking about the wines, eh?

#NWTW Week 47: What We Thought of Pinot Grigio

For The Foodies, Italy, New Wine This Week, Whites

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Sometimes one of the hardest things to do when you’re meant to be reviewing something is if you’re not sure you’re a fan of the thing in the first place. For some this week, asking you to critique Pinot Grigio was a bit like sending my French colleague, JB, down to Lords to let me know what he thought of the first day’s play.

#NWTW Week 47: Food pairing with Pinot Grigio

For The Foodies, Info For Beginners, Italy, New Wine This Week, Whites

week 47 hummus

I said in the last post that one of the great things about Pinot Grigio is that it goes with a lot of things. That’s why it’s always on pub wine lists. If in doubt, go for the Grigio! That makes this post a bit open ended really, but I’ll have a go.

#NWTW Week 47: Italian’s Always Try To Have a Style of Their Own

Italy, New Wine This Week, Whites

week 47 style

Grapes tend to change their name depending on the country they grow in. Sometimes the names and styles are so similar it’s hard not to know they’re the same thing. Grenache in France is Garnacha in Spain. Syrah in France is Shiraz everywhere else. But Pinot Grigio is different.

#NWTW Week 47: Where To Get The Best From Pinot Grigio

Info For Beginners, Info For More Seasoned Winos, Italy, New Wine This Week, Whites

week 47 dolomites

From just 12 hours or so on the twittershpere, it appears that I’ve touched a nerve with some wine-o’s out there. Even the mention of the words “Pinot Grigio” is a bit like kryptonite. But boys and girls, did we learn nothing from last week? In the same way there’s Lambrusco and there’s LAMBRUSCO, there’s Pinot Grigio and there’s PINOT GRIGIO!

#NWTW Week 5: An Intro Into Torrontés

Argentina, Info For Beginners, Info For More Seasoned Winos, New Wine This Week, Whites

Torrontés is a wine that not many will have heard of, but it’s really beginning to make some serious waves amongst the “dinner party” sets (to be fair, I’m in that set I guess too, so not taking the ride here).

To know why Torrontés is becoming so popular, you need to know a bit about Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Grigio.  I’ll try keep this as brief as possible…

Notes on Northern Spain ♯4: Good luck with the pronunciation!

Spain, Whites

Now when most people pop into the wine shop, thinking about a bottle of white for the evening, some people head straight for the Blossom Hill. A couple straight for the entry level Pinot Grigio. And maybe a few more discerning guys and girls will flick past the Chardonnay from Burgundy, or a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc (or “bitch diesel” as the aussies call it!). I guess Spanish white wines (still wines, not talking Cava here) wouldn’t really cross many people’s minds.

But when I was out in San Sebastian, I had a chance to try more and more of what I think should be the flagship dry white wine from Spain. The grape is called Albariño and one of the easier-to-get-hold-of styles is made in an area called the Rias Baixas.

As with most things in life, Rias Baixas is only small, but very effective

As with most things in life, Rias Baixas is only small, but very effective

It’s right over in the top left hand corner of Spain, jutting out over the northern border of Portugal. It’s still fairly mountainous here, but also gets lots of weather blowing in from the Atlantic. Big problem with this is that it means the weather is much more variable, so year on year it’s swings and roundabouts whether you’ll get a good crop or a difficult one. But what it also means is that the Albariño manages to keep hold of its acidity. It’s this acidity that makes you salivate when you drink it, giving the impression of it being a really refreshing drink.

It tends to be made in a crisp style, a bit like Pinot Grigio, but it has plenty of peach and apricot flavour in addition. This wine should be pretty easy to get hold of these days across the world wine stores. Being from near the coast, it’s made to go great with all things seafood, so if that’s your food of choice, you’ve got to try this.

Albariño and a cheeky prawn stew, perfect!

Albariño and a cheeky prawn stew, perfect!

Only thing I’d say is, for those non-spanish speakers out there, ask someone who knows how to pronounce the “ñ” and the basque “x”. Took four days (and lots of funny looks) of me walking round and jabbering like a complete tool for someone to correct me.

Cheers