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Mystery white

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Orvieto 2011, Tragugnano, Sergio Mottura ($19.25, 11660830)
A blend of organically farmed, well, what? The winemaker and the Quebec agent say Grechetto (50%), Procanico (40%) and Sauvignon Blanc (10 %). Several retailers and reviewers, including the Gazette’s Bill Zacharkiw, say Procanico, Verdello (by which they surely mean not the Iberian grape but… what? Friuli’s Verduzzo?) and Grechetto. I’m going with the winemaker since I get whiffs of Sauvignon. Whichever variety they are, the grapes come from the estate’s oldest vineyard and are vinified separately and blended just before bottling. Fermented (with selected yeasts) and matured (on the lees until the spring) in stainless steel vats. 13.5% ABV.
Lemon blossom and stones with a hint of gooseberry, powdered mustard and dried pine needles. Soft, round, even a little sweet-seeming on entry: quite extracted though not what you’d call fruity. Citrusy acid and minerals surge on the mid-palate and are joined by a bitterness that lingers through the clean, dry, lemon leaf finish. The combination of richness and minerally bite is special – Zacharkiw talks about Chablis but I keep returning to certain Alvarhinos and Godellos.

Not a good match for bay scallops and blanched, chopped rapini sautéed together in olive oil with minced anchovy, garlic and chile. The rapini brought out the wine’s bitter streak while the anchovy and garlic did a number on the fruit. In isolation the scallops worked with the wine, indicating that simply prepared seafood might be the way to go. Or try the winemaker’s suggestion of fresh pecorino or mozzarella with tomato and basil.

Written by carswell

February 11, 2013 at 10:23

One Response

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  1. […] with lowish acidity, a saline finish and no personality. I quite enjoyed Mottura’s Orvietto last year but this was simply forgettable. Closed and in need of time? Let’s hope that’s the […]

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