White Wine Rafael Palacios Louro 2021. Alvaro Palacios is rightfully one of Spain’s most famous winemakers for his work in Priorat and his brother Rafael is quickly making his mark on the other side of the country in Valdeorras just to the north of the Portuguese border. The steep terraces and tough terrain make winemaking here a real challenge, but also ensure very low yields and powerful, concentrated wines. Rafael currently owns 20 prime plots including 100 year old vines scattered across the region. Louro do Bolo is composed from 100% Godello, a grape that is on the ascendancy in Spain thanks to the rich, minerally wines coming out of Valdeorras. Rafael’s bottlings rank amongst the region’s finest, including this expression which is crafted from his plots in the villages of Chandoiro, Lentellais, Outardepregos and Santa Cruz set at an altitude of up to 680 metres. Rafael’s vines are farmed organically and biodynamically, and in the winery he uses wild yeasts to ferment the must in French oak vats and ages the wine on the lees for 5 months. The result is a rich and creamy white with plenty of stone fruit and citrus character along with a smooth texture and long finish.
White Wine Rafael Palacios Louro 2021
White Wine Kozlovic Moskat Momjanski 2021. The Kozlovic family have made wine on their namesake estate since 1904 and today the property is in the capable hands of Gianfranco and Antonella Kozlovic. The talented husband and wife team have made a name for their boutique winery thanks to their passion for native Croatian grapes which they skilfully work into authentic and delicious wines. The couple’s Moskat Momjanski is a single varietal dessert wine which displays the true decadence and opulence of the Muscat grape when in the hands of exceptionally talented winemakers. This particular type of Muscat is unique to the Momjan region of northwestern Istria where the Kozlovic estate is situated. The nose is luscious and intense with hints of lychee, honeysuckle, lemon zest, toasted nuts, and ripe stone fruit. Take a sip and you’ll discover a rich sweetness and long-lasting mango, honey, and citrus flavours which are balanced by a bright freshness. The intense flavour profile of this generous dessert wine makes a great match for blue cheeses thanks to the pleasant contrast between sweetness and the salty cheese. Other great partners include toasted nuts, foie gras, or fruit-led desserts like pavlova topped with wild berries, a vibrant lemon tart, or cheesecakes.
White Wine Gaja Rossj Bass 2021. The work of mythical Italian producer Angelo Gaja, the Chardonnay-based Rossj Bass is named after Angelo’s youngest daughter, Rossana, and ranks amongst Italy’s most sought-after white wines. The addition of a small proportion of Sauvignon Blanc to this Chardonnay has created a rounded, structured wine that exudes grace and sophistication. Fermented in stainless steel tanks and then aged in barriques for six to seven months, the nose erupts with ripe peaches, mangos, sweet lemon curd, toasted almonds and hints of fresh flowers and mountain herbs. In the mouth the rich, full texture is balanced by a crisp acidity and intense tropical fruit, citrus and toasty flavours which linger long on the tongue. The opulent character of the Rossj Bass makes it a versatile match for special chicken or lobster dishes as well as milder Asian pork or salmon recipes. Often compared to the finest white Burgundies from Montrachet, the limited production Rossj Gaja is in high demand with Chardonnay lovers around the globe thanks to the decades Angelo has devoted to proving the potential of Piedmontese wines. When he took over the family business in 1970, he controversially introduced temperature-controlled stainless steel tanks and small oak barriques for ageing, ushering in a new era for Piedmontese winemaking. Today he is in the process of handing over the reins to the next generation, his three children, but there is no doubt his magnificent legacy will endure for decades to come throughout the Piedmont region.