1. THE HEART OF THE DEAL ~ THE WINERY: info is coming from the company’s own statement
    1. I can’t make up their history
    2. Nor am I to try
    1. Sample from: Quintessential Wines


2016 Vintage Prosecco, Veneto Italy

THE HEART OF THE DEAL: This 100 percent 2016 Vintage Prosecco Sparkling wine was made from the Glera grape variety, by producer Vino dei Fratelli. Their label shows an ancient Roman coin struck in 46 BC depicting two of the most famous FRATELLI (brothers) in the Roman religion. Castor and Pollux fell in love with beautiful sisters who were already betrothed to suitors. The brothers challenged and slew their rivals, but Castor was mortally wounded. In the end, Zeus (Roman name Jupiter) placed both their immortal souls together in the sky as symbols of brotherly love. Today we refer to them as the constellation Gemini.

THE SCIENCE OF THE DEAL: The best bunches were hand harvested and carefully selected. They were then pressed, after a cold maceration process. Next, the thick, suspended must is allowed to rest in stainless steel tanks. The tanks are chilled to 41 to 50 degrees Fahrenheit (5 to 10 degrees Celsius). After 10 to 12 hours, the clear part of the must has separated from the fermentation cap. The winemaking takes from 15 to 20 days in stainless steel tanks. The temperature of the tanks is constantly at 64 to 68 degrees Fahrenheit (18-20 degrees Celsius). Finally, the still wine is made effervescent, by adding a special yeast and sugar, to create just the right amount of bubbles. This wine is then chilled at 28 degrees Fahrenheit (-4 degrees Celsius), filtered, and bottled for soulful wine lovers.

THE SOUL OF THE DEAL: Tiny, tiny bubbles greet the sparkling wine flute, as I carefully slide the 2016 Vintage Prosecco Sparkling down the edge of my glass, ever… so… slowly. I don’t want one bubble meant for my enjoyment to evaporate into thin air. Au contraire. I want to experience every little tiny bubble, which came alive in the above description of crafting this special Prosecco. This is pale yellow Prosecco also murmurs at hints of a green reflection. The bouquet has delightful scents of lemon and lime, and the palate is pure unctuousness. The fruity minerality, as it fades into the distance, lingers longer than most. Ben Fatto!


2016 Paringa Sparkling Shiraz

THE HEART OF THE DEAL: The ARH Australian Wine Company Pty Ltd. Here’s a statement to pay attention to ~ “We simply aim to make the best value-for-money Australian Shiraz on the planet,” by David & Dena Hickinbotham. I’m ready to believe them, because it’s an important integrity statement that dares to deliver their most capable accomplishment, for my palate. It’s bold, it’s brave, and with this wine, they met their goal for delivering a great sparkling Australian Shiraz to me.

THE SCIENCE OF THE DEAL: The grapes come from 15-year old vines, which are grown in the sub-surface limestone layer, beneath sandy loam topsoil. This one is an interesting fermentation process. The Paringa Sparkling Shiraz gets its bubbles, not from a secondary fermentation, but from the process of dissolving carbon dioxide in a liquid. Process: Carbon Dioxide is under high pressure. When reduced, the CO2 gas is introduced from an outside system, which is a released form into the solution, creating small bubbles, causing the wine to become sparkling.

THE SOUL OF THE DEAL: Rich, full bodied beauty, bramble berries – Red and bubbly for Valentine’s Day? Here she is! When trying the wine, I didn’t have a clue what it was going to be like. I’ve had other Shiraz sparkling, but never this inky and wildly wonderful. It lingers in tannins, chalk, and freshly smashed blackberries. If you’re planning red all the way and want to pair with milk chocolate, here’s your pairing. The rich, sweet milk chocolate will round out the rich dark sparkling wine. I tend toward finding a balance in food and wine, like all things in life. I like to have a chemical balance in my mouth. Heat + Sweet = balance. And Sweet calls for something Dry. Always find the balance.