The Tasting Panel magazine

July 2016

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22  /  the tasting panel  /  july 2016 NYC SIPS story and photos by Lana Bortolot F or this editor's last Sips column, we went on a subway tour around the world— from the South Seas to Spain's Somontano region. It's been a good ride with some tasty traveling companions. Winemaker Andrew Quin brought ten years of Hentley Farm juice to town for an evolutionary tasting through its two Barossa Valley terroirs, which he calls "the Beauty and the Beast." Rather than a fairy tale, the winemaker, who trained in the Languedoc with Famille Lurton, says, "It's very much a terroir story . . . a patch of dirt that can pro- duce different Shirazes, something we think no one else is doing." The Beauty's parcels lying along the Greenock Creek yield round wines with restrained fruit (co-fermented with Viognier), while the Beast's parcels on a western-facing slope with day-long sun deliver bigger, riper wines. But even these have an inherent softness, a theme echoed in the retrospective tasting that Quin said showed "where Australia's wines are going: less oak, more natural acidity and vibrance." For Sauvignon Day, Ranit Librach, U.S. Promotions Manager for Wines of New Zealand, hosted a multicourse luncheon trip around the seafood world at Cull & Pistol showing the diversity of the En-Zed wines with sushi, raw oysters, spicy fish tacos, Maine-style lobster rolls and braised Spanish octopus. Move over, Muscadet! Its name may mean "Under the Mountains," but the Denominación de Origen of Somontano, located in northern Spain's Huesca province (Aragon), is positioning itself to "shout it from the mountains" about the elegant, mineral-driven wines produced there. Though known for its red and white Garnachas, the regional Chardonnays can be "old school—pure and mineral with no manipulation," said Andrés Vidal, pouring wines on behalf of Enate, one of the largest producers in the region. Our final Sips Stop was the party thrown by Gambero Rosso for Allegrini, celebrat- ing its designation as Winery of the Year for 2016. Sixth-generation Marilisa Allegrini poured a special vertical of two iconic labels: Amarone and La Poja from 1997, 2000 and 2006. The always sartorially correct Marco Sabellico, Gambero Rosso's Senior Editor, worked the floor, the single-monikered Italian singer Pilar gave a private concert and torrents of rain stopped in time for guests at Studio 450's rooftop to marvel at the miracle that is Manhattan's evolving skyline. Shawn Dore (left) helped winemaker Andrew Quin with the Hentley Farm retrospective at Rebelle. Marilisa Allegrini looks on as Gambero Rosso Senior Editor Marco Sabellico looks ready to serenade guests at Studio 450. Killed it! Cull & Pistol seafood paired with NZ Sauvignon Blancs. Andrés Vidal (front) and Alfonso Martínez, Director at Passion & Taste, which represents DO Somontano, at the new Amada restaurant in Battery Park. Sipping the World on a MetroCard

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