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FCC Review #007 - Unboxed! CWS February Wine Box

Unboxed - Tour De Vino February Wine Box!

As we continue our frolic through the world’s wineries, we’ve got two stops this month, Austria and the United States.

Pratsch Rose (Niederösterreich) 2017

When I think of Austrian wines, I think of some of the world’s finest riesling; the F.X. Pichler’s 2013 vintage, and Franz Hirtzberger 2015 vintages. Austrian riesling is undeniably the creme de la creme - fresh, full-bodied, sharp, and minerally - even though they are typically a little drier than a German riesling. Rosé’s never come to mind, not until now. I can’t stop thinking about the flavours in the Pratsch Rosé featured in February’s box.

Zweigelt, the grape which gives this rosé its distinct dry, somewhat tart red cherry flavour, is the most planted grape in Austria. It has the profile of a pinot noir almost and makes for some typical full-bodied Austrian red wines.

On the nose, this rosé is like the nerdy girl with glasses, braces and pigtails - very unassuming, and probably underestimated at first instance. This wine only stays meek on the nose. The light scent of rose petals, even dipping into the scent of passion fruit flowers, give you a fresh valentine's bouquet aroma. It is welcoming and like the usher at a wedding ceremony, invites you to take a seat and let the ceremony begin.This wine is going to dazzle your taste buds.

Rosé’s are usually (for me) a little dry, and this one sticks to that script, though it invites irony into the equation as you transcend from the taste of tart-ish strawberries into a sweet watermelon profile that lingers on the tongue a bit. At forté in this summer fruit crescendo is under-ripe peach crossed with white pear comes off boastfully and brilliantly. The nerd has come out of her shell and suddenly it hits you - the nerd is the sexy girl next door.

This wine is incredibly refreshing to drink. It’s a good wine for the ladies when it’s time for a girl’s night; an excellent summertime evening pour if you’ve got a verandah with an ocean view. The citrus in it is not at all overpowering. The sweetness and the dryness balance better than a Chinese acrobat.

I’d like to pair this with a grilled seafood dish - whole langoustines, or Tiger Prawns; the acidity of the wine and the earthy carbonization from flame grilling sounds sexy. Coming back to the acidity of this wine, it would even be delightful to sip with a dessert like a fruit flan, or a marcascapone-based tart.

Really curious to see what Chef comes up with for this one!

The Insider Cabernet Sauvignon - Vinum Cellars (Paso Robles, U.S.A)

An incredibly bold, moderately tannic with a balanced dryness, The Insider Cabernet Sauvignon is a heavyweight contender in its class. A quick swirl in your wine glass will show legs characteristic of medium to full-bodiedfull bodied wines, long and slow draining down the glass. This showcase is a performance to prepare for audacious flavoursflavors.

Black cherries and raspberries are first to hit the palette. There is a bit of spice that comes across like black pepper but finished with an earthy black currant flavourflavor. Sometimes, a wine that is very tannic will give you a light rubbery taste., and wWith The Insider, this comes through with a touch of oak and the slightest hint of vanilla. You may also find some plum, and blueberry on the finish.

California wines, particularly those grown in the valleys, or at the base of the mountains, tend to have this lovely earthy and organic flavourflavor to it. The richness of the soil comes through in their wines, and in though I appreciate that this isn’t possible, - this Cabernet seems almost made to be complementedcomplimented by the olives grown in this wine’s home region of Paso Robles.

We don’t have much in terms of game meats available in The Bahamas, but the first thing that comes to my mind as a pairing is a nice wood pigeon breasts, or even a pan-seared searedpan seared duck breast; slightly oily and very rich meata slightly oily and very rich meat to match the boldness and dial down the tannins.

Another great food and wine marriage for this complex cabernet is pizza-, but not a basic fast food delivery pizza-, a gourmet pizza. Think spicy chorizo and arugula with the saltiness of parmesan cheese and a drizzle of olive oil and balsamic vinaigrette on each slice. If you don’t know how to make a pizza at home, I will drop my pizza recipe for you in the post-tasting blog, Decanted.

If you haven’t already, be sure and subscribe tofor the Caribbean Wines and Spirits Tour De Vino monthly subscription box. Each month you will receive 2 wines, a recipe and an invitation to a virtual tasting hosted by Chris Duncombe, and yours truly, Nick International!

Shoot an email over to and send them your details.

Tell them Nick sent you!


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