This article was published in The 30 Second Wine Advisor on Friday, Apr. 1, 2011 and can be found at http://www.wineloverspage.com/wineadvisor2/tswa20110401.php.
Tasty red from white wine lands
In some world wine regions where white wine is king - Alsace, Austria, Germany, France's Loire Valley and to some degree New Zealand, for example - the idea of opening a red wine of the region may strike us as somewhere between unexpected and funny.
But don't laugh too fast. The old adage about not judging a book by its cover certainly applies as well to judging a wine by its expected color. I've sampled some outstanding Pinot Noirs from Alsace and Germany's Mosel Valley. New Zealand's Central Otago is gaining a reputation for great reds. Just last night, I enjoyed an excellent Loire Cabernet Franc with smoked Berkshire pork ribs.
Today's featured wine, the budget-level "Hugo" label blend from proprietor Markus Huber, more than adequately speaks for itself as a delicious red from white wine lands.
It's a blend of indigenous varieties: Zweigelt (80%), a modern grape developed by a Dr. Zweigelt in 1922, and Blaufräufrankisch (20%), a traditional Austrian and German grape known in other regions as Lemberger.
Bottled under a sturdy screw-cap to keep the wine clean and fresh, it offers a light, sprightly, peppery flavor with crisp, food-friendly acidity and the intriguing minerality that sets good Austrian wines apart. It's well worth the modest toll. You'll find my tasting report below.
The California Wine Club Puts Their Money Where Their Mouth Is
When it comes to wine quality, service, and bringing you the adventure of trying wines from all of California's many wine regions, The California Wine Club says they've got the competition beat.
They'd like to prove it to you. They are so confident you'll love the wines they feature that they'll give you your first month's selections for just the cost of shipping ($13).
If you don't think their club beats your current club, they'll buy you a 1-month, 2-bottle shipment from your old club. Really. Up to a $50 value.
They are that confident you will love The California Wine Club.
Give them a try and your first month is just $13.
America's most trusted wine club.
"Wow! A wine club that really cares about the quality of wines it sends its members."
Today's Tasting Report
Huber 2009 "Hugo" Niederösterreich Dry Red Wine ($11.99)
Clear dark ruby color. A blend of the German (and Austrian) grapes Zweigelt (80%) and Blaufräufrankisch (20%), it's grapey on the nose at first, somewhat reminiscent of a simple Beaujolais, but fragrant peppery notes offer a different varietal signature. On the palate it's light and bright, with mouth-watering acidity and flowery white pepper over fresh red-berry fruit, with a modest 12.5% alcohol content. Intriguing and typically Austrian stony minerality becomes evident in a long, clean finish. Very interesting wine and a good food companion; excellent value. U.S. importer: Circo Vino, Bensenville, Ill. (March 26, 2011)
FOOD MATCH: It's light and subtle enough to make a winning partner with lighter meats, pork or veal or roast chicken or poultry. It went very well with herb-infused lamb shanks, a popular recipe from my old Wine Advisor FoodLetter.
FIND THIS WINE ONLINE:
Talk About Wine Online
If you have questions, comments or ideas to share about today's article or wine in general, you're always welcome to drop by our online WineLovers Discussion Group, the Internet's first and still the most civil online community. To find our forums, click:
Discussions are open for public viewing, but you must register to post. Registration is free and easy; we ask only that you join following our Real Names Real Format system, using your real name in the format "John Doe" or "John D". Anonymous, cryptic or first-name-only registrations are discarded without notice.
Once your registration has been approved, which usually happens quickly, you'll be able to participate in all our online wine, food and travel forums.
To contact me by E-mail, write email@example.com. I'll respond personally to the extent that time and volume permit.
Subscriptions and Administrivia
Subscribe to this Email edition (free):
WineLoversPage.com RSS Feed (free):
Wine Advisor Archives: