July 31, 2008

July 31st Wine Tasting

July 31st Wine Tasting
Freeport Cheese & Wine
27 Bow Street
Freeport, ME 04032

Where: Hilton Garden Inn
What: Wines from South America
When: 5:30-7:30pm
How: $10/person to taste this flight of wines!

The focus is on wines from the South America - Chile and Argentina!

The Wineries

Maipe (Argentina) - Maipe is a family-owned winery in the foothills of the Andes Mountains. The vineyards are at 3,000 feet elevation. The vineyards are in Agrelo and Lujan de Cuyo, the 2 best growing areas in Mendoza. They farm organically. The warm days and cool nights in the high deserts help the grapes fully ripen over a long growing season. Maipe was the "Lord of the Winds" for the ancient Andean people. Argentines still invoke his name to clear the skies after a heavy rain or to ease the summer heat.

De Martino Winery (Chile) - De Martino and its winemaker, Marcelo Retimal, have been voted "Winery and Winemaker of the Year" in Chile for 5 years in a row by the Chilean wine guide, "Guia Vinoes de Chile." The family has produced wine in Chile for over 70 years and today they are considered one of the driving forces behind the rising quality of Chilean wines in the world market.

Fabre Montmayou (Argentina) - Owned by Domaine Vistalba, Fabre Montmayou is in the Lujan de Cuyo region of Mendoza. Its vineyards are well above 3,000 feet elevation. They make their wines in a more restrained and less "modern" style (not "fruit-forward"). Herve Fabre was in the first wave of French winemakers to arrive in Mendoza. His estates have been producing wine in Mendoza since the early 1990's.

Ricardo Santos (Argentina) - Ricardo Santos was the first Argentine winemaker to export Malbec to the USA over 30 years ago. He's the former owner of the Norton Winery. He left a career in architecture, convinced that Argentina could produce wines equal to anywhere in the world.

The Wines


Maipe* Torrontes 2007 (Argentina) $11.99 - We LOVE this! It’s AWESOME! Aromas of oranges, fresh white peaches, pears, green apples, melons and roses! Flavors of peaches, green apples, pears and minerals. Nice weight to this. Fresh and refreshing. Nice acidity. Long, dry finish with a bit of spiciness to it. 100% Torrontes. Torrontes is a cross of Muscat and Mission (Paies in Chile & Criolla in Argentina). Hand-harvested. Maipe farms organically. Stainless steel fermentation. Food pairing – seafood, spicy foods, smoked meats, mild-to-medium strong cheeses. Drinks well without food.

De Martino* Organically-Grown Grapes Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (Chile) $15.99 - This is a tasty Sauvignon Blanc! Rocking good and distinctive! It's bright, fresh & young & you should drink it that way! Lots of fresh lemon in the aromas and flavors, but it isn't tart...nice combination of minerals and fruits in the flavors & minerality. Long finish that is crisp and clean...the finish is driven more by minerals than fruit. Well-balanced acidity. 100% stainless steel fermentation. Organically grown grapes. Natural yeasts. Food pairing - shellfish, lobster, chicken roasted with lemons, pasta primavera (veggies with a cream sauce). Gold Medal Winner, 1st "International Green Wine Competition"

De Martino Legado Reserva Chardonnay 2006 (Chile) $15.99 - WONDERFUL! A "Baby Kistler!" Big aromas & flavors. Pears, green apples, minerals, vanilla, spice, oak, subtle buttery, creamy feel...all of these components are well-balanced. Crisp & bright in terms of fruit & minerality. From the Limari Valley - a cooler area than Maipu & it is BONE dry...the soil is clay, limestone & large riverbed stones. 100% French oak barrels; 50% new oak. 1 year in the barrel, sur lies, before bottling. 4,270 cases made. Food pairing – roasted chicken, salmon, creamy pasta dishes, etc. Wine Spectator, 89 points


Fabre Montmayou Rosé of Malbec 2006 (Argentina) $13.99 - Delicious rosé from South America! Aromas and flavors of violets, raspberries, strawberries and red cherries! Nice acidity to balance the fruit in the wine. Dry finish that lasts! Stainless steel fermentation. 100% Malbec. Food pairing - drinks well on its own. Great with tuna, grilled chicken, green salads, pasta and spicy Asian dishes.


De Martino Legado Reserva Carménère 2005 (Chile) $15.99 - Wonderful! A bang-up, fabulous wine! It's soft & rich in the mouth! Aromas of black cherries, black plum, red berries, hints of vanilla & cocoa. Soft, supple texture. The flavors are similar to the aromas. This just drinks so nicely! It's a treat. Aged 12 months in French oak barriques. 37% of the barrels are new. 100% Maipo Valley fruit. Food pairing - roasted and grilled meats. Mushroom dishes. Lasagna. Drinks well on its own! Wine Spectator, 88 points, "100 Great Value Wines!"

Maipe* Mendoza Malbec 2007 (Argentina) $11.99 - Excellent wine & a great value! Aromas and flavors of flowers, ripe figs, dark berry fruit and more! Wonderful floral aromas at the start. Soft, integrated tannins. Nice length on the finish! I’ve tasted this immediately after opening it & a day or two later – it’s been good both ways; decanting will open up the flavors & aromas! 10% aged in oak for 3 months. Organic farming. Food pairing - drinks well on its own. Great with roasted & grilled meats, rich pasta dishes, etc.

Ricardo Santos La Madras Vineyard, Mendoza Malbec 2006 (Argentina) $18.99 - We loved this wine when we tasted it recently – big, rich, tasty, interesting! Aromas of dark fruit, dark semisweet chocolate & figs…a little “funky” aromas at the start. Soft, rich fruit at the start. Peppery spice mid-palate. Nice “legs” in the glass. Well-balanced acidity & tannins. Long, long finish. Aged 6 months in French & American oak. Hand-harvested. Gently pressed. High altitude vineyard; single vineyard. Food pairing - Drinks well with roasted or grilled meats, aged cheeses such as Parm or Piave Vecchio…drinks well on its own if you like bigger wines. Wine Enthusiast, 90 Points, "Editors' Choice"

De Martino Legado Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon Malbec 2005 (Chile) $15.99 - Brand new to Maine and to me....looking forward to trying it....I've like everything this winery has made!


Rashi Moscato d'Asti 2005 (Italy) $15.99 - This is a delightful sparkler of 100% Moscato showing similar aromatic characteristics of Torrentes - white peaches and honeysuckle. Because of its low alcohol, only 5.5%, it's the perfect wine on a hot summer day!