£16.87 for a white wine on a wet Tuesday night? At my current income level that's definitely lunacy.
But this Lunatic white blend has had me in it's spell for some months now...
I had the tiniest taste at a trade event run by Milton Sandford wines back in June, and I was immediately intrigued. I must have tasted over 30 white wines that day, but this was the one which had me moonstruck.
When I saw it was in the "outside the box" case from Wine Cellar Club, I knew I was going to be happy with at least one bottle in the collection I purchased. You can now buy it as an individual bottle in any mixed 12 here.
If you're in America, you may find some locally. It's Californian. The winery is on the Silverado trail in Napa Valley. I enjoyed the 2011, and both it and the 2012 (made from a different blend), have sold out. Who knows what the 2013 will bring when it's released. Good luck, my friends.
He had no chance. In fact, I reckon most people would have no chance! A blend of several grapes including lesser known Symphony, Arneis, Classic Chardonnay, Albariño and Viognier, it's not one I'd like to have in a blind tasting exam. But I'll happily face it any other time. I will definitely be buying another bottle.
It's my first taste of Symphony which is a pretty rare Californian cross breed of Grenache and the highly aromatic Muscat. According to Jancis Robinson's Wine Grapes, it's often used in sweet wines, and plantings are likely to grow since it makes a great blending grape. I'll be keeping my eyes open for it.
It may not be my first taste of Arneis, but I've never reviewed it here. Traditionally from the Piemonte area of north-west Italy, it's most famous home is the town of Roero where it produces full-bodied and highly scented dry white wines. I will probably be on the look out to try more of these now, as I continue my quest to gain some knowledge of Italian wines. Much like Viognier, one of the other grapes in the blend, it was almost extinct as recently as 35 years ago, but has now been saved.
The nose is reminiscent of Riesling, despite the utter lack of that aromatic grape in the mix. Citrus and mineral notes abound, aromas that leap out of the glass. The acitidy is as biting as Hannibal Lecter. The body as voluptuous as Annie Wilkes in Misery, but the flavours are as edgy and complex as Norman Bates.
A complex and intriguing wine that will surprise and impress your friends and one that might just drive you insane with desire for another glass.
We decided to go out this Tuesday as the weather was brighter. We sat outside a local Italian restaurant and had a bottle of Roero Arneis (I stick to my plans!)
It felt a lot simpler than the Lunatic blend, less tropical, more apple, pear and some grapefruit. It was a good match for our mainly fish based dishes. The food improved it. It felt a little to simple to enjoy on it's own. I'd love to hear if you've drunk Arneis, what you think of it.