Buzzing about biodiversity
Up high on the west side of the Trentino valley, one of Ferrari Trento’s organic vineyards I visited in April had been home to a handful of beehives – until a bear wandered down from the steep wooded slopes above and smashed them all up in search of honey. Today, the replacement hives are protected by a solar-powered electric fence: those bees are an important part of the site’s biodiversity. All of Ferrari’s estate vineyards have been certified organic since 2017. The company also holds ‘Biodiversity Friend’ certification, issued by the Worldwide Biodiversity Association.
In addition to its own holdings, Ferrari buys grapes from 600 grower families in the region, many of whom work to organic principles but are not certified. Chardonnay specialists they may be, but Ferrari’s predominantly Pinot Noir Giulio Ferrari Rose? (2008, £216.87 Spirits24) is off-the-charts good. One of Italy’s finest sparkling rose?s, it channels Burgundian elegance. The Perle? range, meanwhile, is a great starting point for fizz aficionados. Perle? Bianco Riserva (£37.45 Vinvm) is a 100% Chardonnay extra brut with seven years on its lees. It’s intense and juicy, while the mid-palate is incredibly sapid and saline, ending with exotic hints of mango, spices and peach, along with some customary brioche notes.
Lenz Moser: Benchmarking drinking pleasure
It would have been easy for Laurenz (Lenz) Maria Moser V to sit back, relax and enjoy the wealth and recognition that his earlier projects – not least the successful management and eventual sale of the eponymous estate in Krems and the establishment of Robert Mondavi’s European operation – granted him. His restlessness, creativity and competence, however, left little time for indulgence or contemplation. Today, Lenz Maria Moser Wine Affairs is the umbrella under which myriad exciting projects and collaborations keep the prominent Austrian busy, not only in his home country but also in China, Hungary, Portugal and Australia.
At the epicentre of all his endeavours is the acknowledgement of other people’s talent and potential, as well as a conscious effort to keep his palate well aware of what makes an ‘exciting, memorable and enjoyable’ wine. For this he does regular benchmark tastings, which place his own creations alongside some of the wines that excite him most as a drinker. In early July, Moser visited London to share one of his benchmark tastings with UK professionals. A truly memorable experience, during which notable bottles such as Ridge Vineyards, Estate Chardonnay 2020 (£69.99-£72.99 Banstead Vintners, Selfridges) from California, Franz Hirtzberger’s Rotes Tor Gru?ner Veltliner Smaragd, Wachau 2021 (£42 Lay & Wheeler), or Antinori’s Cervaro della Sala, Umbria 2021 (£90-£110 Hedonism, Mother Vine, South Downs Cellars, Toscanaccio) did not overshadow Moser’s own MM5 Dry Furmint from Tokaj in Hungary, or the Austrian LenzMark, New Chapter Gru?ner Veltliner, Niedero?sterreich 2021.
Many shades of pink
A quartet of rose?s, as we’re still (just about) in summer. First to London’s Covent Garden for the launch of Ladure?e’s summer collection in association with Cha?teau d’Estoublon’s delicious Roseblood (featured in July’s ‘Weekend wines’): blush-pink macarons served with blush-pink Provence rose?. Chatting to the export director, I learned that the cha?teau is about to launch its prestige rose? in the UK: 1489 Roseblood has subtle oak influence and like the regular rose? will be stocked by Majestic. (It has also just launched a white wine made from the Rolle – aka Vermentino grape – which may hit UK shelves next year.)
Meanwhile, two rose?s stood out at The Wine Society’s summer press tasting. The Society’s Corsican Rose? 2022 is pale and Provenc?al in style, and cracking value at just over a tenner a bottle; meanwhile, the Thymiopoulos, Rose? de…
Source : https://www.decanter.com/wine/editors-picks-september-2023-509911/