Coriole 2002 "Contour 4" McLaren Vale Sangiovese-Shiraz ($14.00)
This is a blend of 55 percent of the Italian variety Sangiovese (perhaps best known as the leading grape in Chianti) with 45 percent of the Australian Shiraz (Syrah), grown in the lovely McLaren Vale wine region not far south of Adelaide. It's dark garnet in color with a reddish-violet edge. Pleasant wild-cherry aromas lead into fresh and bright red-fruit flavor with a whiff of spice and a distinctly oaky edge, with crisp acidity to provide structure. I don't think I would mistake it for Chianti in a blind tasting, with its New World fruit-forward character, mouth-filling texture and perceptible oak. But it shows its Italian ancestry in its inviting, quaffable flavor and food-friendly acidity. US Importer: Robert Whale Selections Ltd., Washington, D.C. (Feb 11, 2006)

FOOD MATCH: It paired very nicely with an Italian-style dinner of polpettine (veal mini-meatballs) over spaghetti with a "pink" sauce of fresh tomatoes and a bit of cream.



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