Friday, August 02, 2019

Miss Me?

Hello, friends!

Yes, the Naked Vine is still alive and well -- just transplanted! There's been a lot going on in VineLand over the last several months. The Sweet Partner in Crime traded in her UC Bearcat red and black for the navy and white of the Penn State Nittany Lions. We've been spending a great deal of recent time getting ourselves set up in our new place here in State College.

As any of you who have ever uprooted and headed for a new town know -- moving can be insanely stressful, and moving in the summer means dealing with many days in the warmth. Not to be overly predictable -- but summer means rosé, and a bottle of pink Italian goodness showed up at the homestead recently.

Except, to my surprise, what I had in my hand wasn't technically rosé. Instead, I found myself with a wine style called Ramato -- the Attems 2018 Pinot Grigio Fruili DOC Ramato, to be precise.

What is it? Ramato is a specific term for a rosé-style wine made from Pinot Grigio grapes. The name "Ramato" is from the Italian word for "copper." Pinot Grigio grapes, when ripe, are a greyish-purple, hence their name (and a major differentiation from their cousin Pinot Noir). When pinot grigio pressings are macerated on the grape skins -- which is the process that turns rosé pink -- the resulting juice can turn anywhere from a pale pink to a deep orange, depending on how long the skin contact goes on.

The resulting wine has a different profile than most rosé. There are typically more spice and floral notes on the nose -- and the flavor tends to have more of a stone fruit character.

We popped the Attems while flopping on our deck chairs after a long day of home setup logistics. The bouquet of this wine hit me right out of the box. Many rosé have noses that are so light and delicate as to be almost unnoticeable, but that's certainly not the case here in this glass smelling of peach, grapefruit, and baking spice. The flavor is where the delicacy lies with this wine -- the strawberry and cherry flavors are bounded by minerals. I thought it was incredibly well-balanced and pleasant to drink. The finish had a bit of a peppery note that I found really interesting.

The tech notes on this said it was a "perfect partner" to sweeter cured meats and prosciutto, both of which we happened to have in the fridge, along with some Manchego cheese and marcona almonds. We assembled a little charcuterie tray and went to town. They weren't lying -- this was a great aperitif/appetizer wine.

While most Ramato is Italian in origin, many domestic winemakers who grow Pinot Grigio have been trying the style -- which is certainly worth looking out for as you're wandering down the pink aisle of your local wine shop. (Side note: Central PA can't hold a candle to the wine stores we had in the 859...)

The Attems retails for around $16. A very decent bottle if you're looking for something refreshing.