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IGT Venezia Giulia 2007, Ribolla Gialla, Radikon ($52.00/500 ml, 12493121)
100% organically farmed Ribolla Gialla. Manually harvested. The grapes were destemmed, then placed in neutral Slavonian oak vats (no temperature control) for maceration and fermentation with indigenous yeasts and manual punch-downs three or four times a day. When alcoholic fermentation was complete, the vats were topped up and closed. In all, the wine remained in contact with the skins for between three and four months. The grapes were gently pressed and the wine racked into neutral 25- to 35-hectolitre Slavonian oak barrels for about 40 months. Further racking was performed as needed. No added sulphur, no filtering, no fining. Reducing sugar: 1.7 g/l. 13.75% ABV. Quebec agent: oenopole.
Carafed. Hazy bronze, looking a little like raw cider. Very funky-reduced for the first four hours, then redolent of cedar, dried apricot, straw, white spice, sawed pine and shoe polish. Similarly complex and disconcerting on the palate. Medium-bodied. Extracted and yellow-fruity yet so dry and savoury. Richly textured with subterranean limestone, fine-edged acidity and light tannins that swell on the long, long finish. Fascinating. Serve no cooler than cool room temperature (16-18°C). (Buy again? Yes.)

The wine’s balance and structure make it a candidate for aging. And age well these wines do: opened last winter, a bottle of the first Radikon wine available in Quebec, the 2002 Oslavje (a blend of Chardonnay, Pinot Grigio and Sauvignon Blanc), was a thing of beauty – perfectly at peak, tannins resolved, sweet and savoury and, against all expectations, totally funkless.

The wine comes in 500 ml bottles because Stanko Radkion feels that 500 ml is the ideal amount of wine for one person to drink by himself or for two people to share, assuming they’ll also share a 500 ml bottle of red. Convinced that using a standard cork would allow too high a rate of oxygen exchange, he designed his bottles to have smaller bore necks that take very long, narrow corks.

MWG October 8th tasting: flight 7 of 7

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Written by carswell

October 27, 2015 at 11:05

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