Tuesday, January 15, 2013

MezzaCorona Vigneti delle Dolomiti Pinot Grigio, 2011

Year after year, I keep an eye on the new release of MezzaCorona Pinot Grigio. It's usually about $8.99 when released but at some time during the year, it will be discounted to $6.99, and, at that time, I buy. Even at $9 or $10, though, it is an excellent buy.

As the label explains, all of MezzaCorona's wines come from the estate's own vineyards in the foothills of the Dolomites mountains in northeastern Italy. The Dolomites are rugged and snow-capped. So even in the foothills, the climate is cool, explaining the fresh, brisk, clean aromas and flavors. And the foothills are lined with limestone soil, similar to the soil that produces the wonderful mineral-laced wines of Chablis and the Loire in France.

I always drink MezzaCorona young because it's so fresh and lively--a good Spring and Summer wine but also enjoyable tonight on one of the coldest days of the year in Michigan. The first smells I get are minerals, then fresh herbs--mint and parsley. The fruit is under-stated but present: melon, peach, green apple and citrus but a stiff acid backbone. MezzaCorona Pinot Grigio is never showy but always fresh and clean, leaving the palate ready for another taste. If you drink carefully, examining all the nuances, there is much to find. More likely, you will drink it because you are thirsty, and it goes down all too easily.

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