The Return of Duca del Frassino ~ A Chardonnay and Merlot-Pinot Blend in Boxed Wines

From Cantina di Soave (founded in 1898) comes more Duca del Frassino wines. They’re  retailing for $19.99, and are available nationwide.

I did a six week experiment, beginning in February of 2010, and it ended in April with their Pinot Grigio:

  1. Week One ~ Boxed Wine Experiment with Duca del Frassino’s Garganega/Pinot Grigio
  2. Week 2: Boxed Wine Experiment with Duca del Frassino’s Garganega/Pinot Grigio
  3. Week 3: Boxed Wine Experiment with Duca del Frassino’s Garganega/Pinot Grigio
  4. Week 4: Boxed Wine Experiment with Duca del Frassino
  5. Week 5: Boxed Wine Experiment with Duca del Frassino
  6. Week 6: Boxed Wine Experiment with Duca del Frassino’s Garganega/Pinot Grigio

My experiment was studied by some researchers, because for a month toward the end of 2010, the links on my site for these weeks had an extraordinary amount of clicks. This tells me that it became a study. When that many people read something that I’ve written in a series, over and over again, I gather it could only be an assignment. I never found out what it was, but it was certainly fascinating to watch.

Now, I’ve been given two more boxes of wine to learn about:

  1. 2010 Durello Chardonnay, Venezie Indicazione Geografica Tipica ~ Durello 80 percent, Chardonnay 20 percent.
  2. 2009 Merlot Pinot Noir, Venezie Indicazione Geografica Tipica ~ Merlot is 80 percent, and the Pinot Noir is by 20 percent. What an unusual blend. Since this is a red wine, versus a white that would also be stored in my refrigerator, I conducting the same kind of experiment, but in a more casual setting. I was really curious to see if this red wine would hold up.

The 2010 Durello Chardonnay was excellent. First of all, with the Durello being the predominate grape variety, this one was actually a learning curve wine for me.

The box is a bit tricky. The Chardonnay is very prominently displayed in color, so when I tasted the wine, I thought I was tasting Chardonnay. Silly me, just opening the tap and letting ‘er rip. I was surprised when I tasted it, because it was far from what I was expecting… like a Chard. So, back to the box I went, and read the blend… 80 percent Durello and 20 percent Chardonnay. Aha! Now I knew what I was supposed to be tasting. Once I had a handle on that, I totally enjoyed the wine’s crisp, clean flavors. This is a great little house wine, boxed to be in your fridge and staying so fresh.

I’ve given up on other boxed wines, because the quality hasn’t stayed consistent. This one has and I highly recommend the wine. Imagine… Four bottles of wine for $5.00 per each. These 3-liter boxes are equivalent to four 750 milliliter bottles. For $19.99, you’re getting four bottles of wine at $5.00 per each. This wine is well worth the price.

Onto the Merlot-Pinot…

I’m not the biggest Merlot fan in the world, but I do love Pinot. Merlot is the dominant grape in this one, and the Pinot actually gives this wine blend a delightful mouth feel and flavors. An odd combination, to be sure, it’s a yummy wine to have for those light pasta sauce dishes; whether enjoying a tomato based sauce or a white sauce, this wine will work really well.

This one I’ve had open for about five weeks. I’ve been doing the experiment on a more casual basis this time around. By more casual I mean that the box was tapped, and Jose and I have filled a glass whenever we’ve felt like it. In fact, we just opened a $40.00 bottle of Syrah. We’ve opened plenty of wine even while this one has been sitting on the counter. After the Syrah was open for only two days, that one had gone completely down hill, it became so oxidized. Mind you, we hadn’t left the cork off the bottle’s top for any extended period of time, but the wine – to our surprise – completely fell apart. After having just opened that one, the disappointment was too much to bear, so we went back to the tried and true Duca del Frassino Merlot-Pinot, with a huge sigh of relief. It was still fabulous, and that’s when I thought, this wine has been open for five weeks now. It’s still bright red with lively colors and delicious flavors.

Two thumbs up to Duca del Frassino for extending their product line. When I need a boxed wine (all the time), this is now my house wine.

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9 Responses to “The Return of Duca del Frassino ~ A Chardonnay and Merlot-Pinot Blend in Boxed Wines”

  1. Sondra says:

    So dear Jo,
    Are these wines easy to find? I’d love to try the red one as having wine that will last weeks is a blessing. I’ve twittered and facebooked your review since I know the truth you speak about the white wine we enjoyed together at our Century Club. Now to sip a box of red.

  2. Jo Diaz says:

    Let me get a read on where we can find it, Sondra. It was awesome for a little house red.

  3. christopher says:

    Great reading the comments here and I’m in agreement with anon, Anthony Bourdain is the very best.

    I wrote a blog article which was sparked off by this post on the issue of food blogging and food journalism.

  4. Jo Diaz says:

    Thanks, Christoper, for your support on the blogging and journalism issues. We’re all just starting out in the blogging world, and need to pay respect for those who have come before us, and have earned their stripes. All things evolve in time, and time can’t be rushed. It’s got its own ticking process.

  5. FD says:

    Thank you for this post, it’s very interesting.
    We’re glad you like Duca’s wine. If you agree, we’ll link your post in the blog of Cantina di Soave Italy, http://www.vino365.it.
    If you don’t, please tell us!


  6. Jo Diaz says:

    Dear FD,

    It would be my pleasure. Please link it. I love your Duca wines.

  7. […] From Cantina di Soave (founded in 1898) comes more Duca del Frassino wines. They’re retailing for $19.99, and are available nationwide, written on June 1, 2011. […]

  8. Box fan says:

    Could someone please tell me what wine stores on Long Island Carry Duca pinto grigio box? I used to find it as Costco liquors but they stopped carrying it and I cannot find another retailer that does. The company website doesn’t list retail locations. If anyone knows where it is spill it! thanks!

  9. Jo Diaz says:

    Sorry, it’s impossible for me to know.

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