In the beautiful town of Merano, this year too there was the wine event, the “Merano Wine festival” organized by Helmut Kocher. From 9 to 13 November Merano was at the center of wine tastings, both at tasting tables and at the Hotel Therme. My friend and taster and photographer Sergio Antonini, also this year we went back to Tirolo, to the Patrizia hotel, with our ladies Sara and Margherita. We arrived on Friday afternoon to have dinner at the hotel and be ready for the next day to go to the event, early in the morning, to be able to greet the producers at the tasting stands before the audience enters. It was a pleasure to meet the Tuscan producers and taste their wines awarded by the Wine Festival commission. We also went to greet the Bordeaux wine producers present at the event, as well as the Austrian ones. There was also a decent selection of maison of champagne.
It is pleasant to meet friends and acquaintances in a context dedicated to the cult of wine. I also had several tastings of Piedmont wines and I felt several pleasant Barolo and Barbaresco wines. On Saturday afternoon we made the Masterclass of Tenuta Sette Ponti with the “Oreno” wine while on Sunday we did the Masterclass of Austrian wine with Grüner Veltliner grapes. It is an Austrian wine that I particularly love. I find that this wine has aromas that remind me of Chardonnay of Borgogna and Alsatian reasling for its presence of the mineral, sometimes Kerosene. It is a wine that leaves lips salty. Magnificent! But let’s go back to the event. The hours passed quickly and pleasantly. We found ourselves at the closing time of the event, tired, but satisfied. I am used to tasting wine without swallowing it, but the taste buds get tired equally.
At the end of the evening, you feel the desire to drink serious bubbles to clean your mouth of the tannins of the wine and then be ready, at the table, to drink wines of pleasure. In the evening in the hotel, we had a pleasant dinner with our ladies. Unfortunately, the next morning, Sunday, was the last day for us and therefore after tasting other wines at the tasting tables, we went to the Grüner Veltliner Wine Masterclass and then went to lunch at the Zum Löwen restaurant in Tesimo, near Merano, where we had a great time, both for food and wine. We returned home, eager to return to the beautiful Merano the following year. I must say that the Merano Wine festival is always an enjoyable event, interesting and with attention to the smallest details. In this edition I have seen greater turnout by the public. Let’s now pass to the examination of the wines tasted, remembering that for red wines regarding the width of the tannin, it is important that it makes the following clarifications, so that it can be fully understood. I feel the tannin of the wine on the upper gum. The total width of the tannin is 6/6, that is, the entire width of the upper gum. Obviously, if the tannin is less wide, it can be for example 5/6 and so on. The width of the tannin is important when the quality of the tannin is good or high. If the tannin is wider, the wine is more worthy of attention, but the tannin, as I have specified, must in any case be of good quality.
As regards the vertical of the “Oreno” wine, I must say that it is a wine that I particularly love and that I have found improved in recent years.
In the 2007 vintage the blend was 40% Merlot, 40% Cabernet Sauvignon and 20% Sangiovese, while from the 2008 vintage the blend became 50% Merlot, 40% Cabernet Sauvignon and 10% Petit Verdot.
TENUTA SETTE PONTI
Oreno Toscana IGT, vintage 2007
(Grapes: 40% Merlot, 40% Cabernet Sauvignon and 20% Sangiovese)
Intense ruby red color – black.
Rich and varied nose made of aromas of mint, eucalyptus, dried plum, hay, chlorophyll (it is also used to give color to the oil), sweet tobacco, black marasca cherry, green herbaceous notes, black pepper, walnut nutmeg, dried tomato, ripe blueberries, oil paint, bay leaf, sage and wet earth. At the moment of tasting explodes the licorice flavor accompanied by that of cherry, slightly candied. Quite balanced wine with a slight fluctuating effect between alcohol and freshness. The body is medium. The tannins are sweet, fairly large (5 / 6–), initially velvety and then slightly burn the upper gum. Long is its persistence in taste. Wine better on the nose than the taste. 2007 it was a hot vintage.
ORENO Toscana IGT, vintage 2008
(Grapes: from the 2008 vintage: 50% Merlot, 40% Cabernet Sauvignon and 10% Petit Verdot)
Intense ruby red, black.
Olfactory fan made of plum, intense graphite, mint, eucalyptus, cherry, blackberry, cassis, vanilla, juniper berry (similar to shoe wax in the metal box), light black pepper, nutmeg, wet earth , dried fig and hay.
Tasting is savory and mineral with alcohol and freshness that alternate with each other, while the tannins are sweet and quite large (5/6), initially velvety and then in the final dry the upper gum a little. Long is its gustatory persistence.
(90- / 100)
ORENO Toscana IGT, vintage 2009
Intense ruby red color, black.
Bouquet made of scents of toasted peanut, intense of graphite, plum, cherry, laurel, sage, dry hay, mint and eucalyptus.
On the palate it feels a pleasant mineral graphite flavor. The body is medium enough. Balanced wine with the alcoholic mass dominated by freshness and tannins.
The latter are sweet, silky and broad (6 / 6–). Its persistence is long, with an intense fruity finish of plum and cherry.
Nice wine, different from the previous two.
ORENO Toscana IGT, vintage 2010 (magnum format)
Intense ruby red, black coat.
On the nose it releases aromas of gunpowder, graphite, light black pepper, dried tomato, cherry and plum.
In the mouth there is a medium body and a good gustatory balance between alcohol and freshness.
The tannins are sweet, wide (6 / 6–), initially velvety and then dry the upper gum a little. Long is its persistence with boisé finish.
ORENO TOSCANA IGT, vintage 2013
Intense ruby red-black color.
Nose like a volcano in full eruption with an incredible richness of aromas of rosemary, bay leaf, sage, mint, eucalyptus, boisé, sweet of the outer part of the sugared almond, licorice, dried plum, varnish enamel, alcohol, earth and black cherry.
The olfactory examination continues with tones of oil paint, ripe blackberry, light black pepper and nutmeg, fresh plum, blueberry, graphite, ending with puffs of black dried fig and lavender.
On the palate the wine has a medium body and an alcoholic mass that dominates the freshness and tannins. The latter are sweet, wide (6 / 6-), initially velvety and then let the upper gum dry and burn a little.
Its persistence is long with a finish of black olive and dry black fig. It also makes your throat burn a little.
From a nose like this I would have expected a more pleasant wine to taste.
In my opinion the grapes have ripened too much at the expense and alcohol dominates the freshness.
ORENO TOSCANA IGT, vintage 2015
Beautiful intense ruby red.
Olfactory kit made of perfumes of mint, eucalyptus, cherry and fresh plum, light of black pepper and nutmeg, blueberry and oil paint.
When tasted, pleasant fruity sensations reminiscent of plum, cherry and blueberry are all squeezed. The body is medium strengthened. Balanced wine even if the throat is slightly burned at the end. Tannins are sweet, thick and broad (6 / 6–).
Its gustatory persistence is long with fruity sensations and a slightly boisé finish.
ORENO TOSCANA IGT, vintage 2016
Pretty intense purple red.
The nose highlights aromas of black pepper, nutmeg, cherry, plum, graphite, sweet from the outside of the confetti, tomato preserve, oil paint and graphite.
At the gustatory encounter you can enjoy a good sweetness and a perfect gustatory balance with the alcoholic mass dominated by freshness and tannins.
The latter are sweet, velvety and quite broad (5/6). The body is medium. Flavors of light boisé, black pepper and plum that persist during its long gustatory persistence.
(93 – / 100)
ORENO TOSCANA IGT, vintage 2017
It is a mix of ruby red and purple.
At first the sense of smell is a little lazy, but then the toasted peanut and the graphite peep out, followed by cherry, plum, varnish enamel, blueberry, dried tomato, to end with whispers of camphor.
On the palate you can taste fruity flavors of cherry and plum. The body is medium enough and the wine has a perfect balance between alcohol and freshness with the latter which does not make you feel alcoholic exuberances. The tannins are sweet, wide (6/6), initially velvety and then slightly drying the upper gum.
In a not happy year like 2017, the company managed to make a good wine, which will need to stop in the bottle to express itself in the best way.
Regarding the Grüner Veltliner grape, for me its best production area is in Austria and it is the Wachau, with its 1344 hectares (Grüner Veltliner and Riesling)
If you read my tasting notes below, you will understand how pleasant these wines are, both on the nose and on the taste.
2016 Traisental DAC Reserve
Grüner Veltliner, “Der Wein vom Stein”
(AL 13,5%, RS 4,1g/l, AC 6,2g/l)
Light straw yellow with gray reflections. On the nose the scent of white pepper emerges followed by brackish, vanilla, lemon, rose water, small light pear, renetta apple, ending with graphite puffs.
On the palate the tongue is slightly pinched. The wine is sapid and mineral. The body is medium, just enough.
Alcohol and freshness are quite balanced even if there is a slight swinging effect.
Its taste persistence is quite long with a lemon and rennet apple finish. The lips are slightly salty.
2014 Kremstal DAC Reserve
Grüner Veltliner “Das Beste vom GV”
(AL 13,5%, RS 1g/l, AC 5g/l)
Golden yellow dress.
The nose is rich and varied with aromas of white pepper, ripe rennet apple, exotic fruit (mango and papaya), vanilla, juniper berry, rust pear, pastry, beer yeast, sugary notes, graphite, yellow flowers, to end with references of kerosene.
Tasting notes are sweet with strong acidity that remind me of ripe lemon. It is sapid and mineral.
The body is medium and the wine is balanced with the freshness and minerality that dominate the alcoholic mass. The body tends to go away and is therefore quite present with a finish of litchis, intense mandarin, cooked pear and very final of yellow grapefruit.
2013 Kamptal DAC Reserve
Grüner Veltliner Ried Spiegel “1ÖTW”
(AL13,5%, RS 1g/l, AC 5g/l)
Straw yellow dress with golden reflections.
From the glass rise sweet aromas of honey, followed by an intense white pepper, brackish, blond leather, Marseille soap, sugar, ripe rennet apple, pear rust, flint, to end with puffs of exotic fruit.
On tasting it has a medium-sufficient structure. Good flavor and minerality.
A little fluctuating effect between alcohol and freshness. Its gustatory persistence is quite long, the body slips away and acidity helps with persistence. In the finish it has flavors of salt and lemon.
The upper gum is slightly burned.
2010 WACHAU SMARAGD
Grüner Veltliner Ried Loibenberg
(AL13%, RS 3,6g/l, AC 6,4 g/l)
Nose made of aromas of vanilla, juniper berry, white pepper, Marseille soap, pear, renetta apple, ending with sweet references reminiscent of wildflower honey.
The taste has a mineral flavor, is savory and has a rich acidity. To follow, ripe pear and the slightly ripe renetta apple. The body is medium. Well balanced wine thanks to the abundant freshness and minerality that do not taste the alcoholic mass. Its persistence is long with a ripe pear finish.
Nice savory and mineral wine, typically Wachau.
2008 Kamptal DAC Reserve
Grüner Veltliner Ried Lamm
(AL 13,5%, RS 4g/l, AC 4,3g/l)
Golden yellow color
Smell characterized by aromas of green olive, vanilla, intense graphite, juniper berry, lemon peel, light black pepper with final touches of brackish.
In the mouth the body is a little elusive.
Sapid wine with juniper berry flavor. It is quite balanced between alcohol and freshness. The latter helps the structure, which goes away, to be more persistent. At the end, the upper gum is slightly burned.
2006 Kremstal Reserve
Grüner Veltliner Ried Lindberg
(AL 13,5%, RS 5,4 g/l, AC 6,3 g/l)
Bright straw yellow color.
Smell initially lazy and then open to aromas of pastry, pear, apple, white pepper, to end with a salty breeze.
Taste rich in acidity, with flavors of crispy renetta apple and pear. The body is medium.
Well balanced wine with freshness and flavor that completely dominate the alcoholic mass. Long is its gustatory persistence.
I wrote: “young wine”.
This is considered an excellent year.
2005 Wagram Reserve
Grüner Veltliner Ried Scheiben
(At 14%, RS 2,1 g / l, AC 5,5 g / l)
Bright straw yellow.
The olfactory casket opens with aromas of blond leather, vanilla, intense white pepper, light juniper berries, Marseille soap, smoked minerals, ending with citrus notes of lemon.
Pleasant sapidity and minerality accompanied by a light honey note.
The body is medium and the wine is well balanced with the alcohol mass completely silenced by the freshness, flavor and minerality.
Its persistence is long with a slightly cooked fruit finish (pear and apple) and withered yellow flowers.
2005 was a cold year but not like 2014.
1997 Wachau Smaragd
Grüner Veltliner Ried Spitzer Point
(AL 14%, RS 1,1 g/l, AC 4,9 g/l)
Golden yellow coat.
Intriguing and pleasant nose with aromas of flint, leather, brackish, mint, apple rennet, cotton starch, pear, smoking of mineral (stone), coconut glue (coconut milk and almond), to end with a pinch of shell almond.
On the palate you can perceive flavors reminiscent of squeezed lemon along with the smoking of the mineral already felt on the nose. The body is medium. Sapid and mineral wine rich in acidity. Imperceptible alcohol mass. Its gustatory persistence with a lemon finish is long.
Really young wine. 1997 is considered a great vintage and this wine is witness of it.