Wednesday, November 3, 2021

Lambrusco Time

California wine négociant Cameron Hughes owns no vineyards and has no official winery.  He sniffs out good wine which has already been produced by established makers, then buys it on the down low with an agreement not to reveal the source.  He then sells the wine online through his wine club - he calls it a wineocracy - bringing top-shelf wines to lower-shelf wallets.  Hughes says he keeps prices low by removing the middleman, the distributor and retailer through which store-bought wines must pass.

Now he is offering a Lambrusco - a first for the Cameron Hughes label, I believe.  Lambrusco is typically a fizzy red wine which can be cloyingly sweet from the wrong producers and deliciously dry from the right ones.  Whoever made the Lot 841 Reggio Emilia Lambrusco got it right.  It comes from the heart of the Emilia-Romagna region, made from Lambrusco Salamino and Lambrusco Marani grapes.  Alcohol is quite low at 8.5% abv and the retail price is only $15.

This wine pours up with a slight frizzante, with the little bubbles clinging around the edge of the glass.  It is colored deep purple, with a deep and dark nose as well.  Aromas of earth, leather and that Lambrusco grapiness are luscious.  The palate shows some of the fizziness as well as a nice crisp acidity.  The wine is labeled as "dolce," but it has a dryness built into it.  It's no dessert wine, and it pairs quite nicely with some good Italian parmesan cheese.

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