This week I have chosen to take a look at two wines on our list that have not had the attention that I feel they perhaps deserve.
When choosing our wine list for The Bench over a year ago now, it was always the goal, as with everything that we sell, to try and provide something different, innovative and unique. At one portfolio tasting we were bowled over by the quality wines coming from Eastern Europe. Many of the grapes and wine styles from countries like Croatia and Slovenia, even Greece, have been historically very much table wine quality. Nothing too exciting, easy drinking, and cheap. Indeed a lot of the grapes that are grown in these countries lend themselves very well to mass production of such table wines. However, the wines that we came across, and that ultimately found their way onto our list were anything but – Perfectly balanced, refined, full of fruit character and a long lasting finish. We ended up listing two Greek Wines and this Week’s Wine of the Week, a White Malvasia from Kozlovic in Croatia.
In fact we loved this Malvasia so much that we have since purchased another one for the list from Gasper, Slovenia.
Malvasia is actually a name used widely for a complex web of grape varieties, that are grown across Italy, Iberia, and much of Eastern Europe. The coastal regions of Croatia and Slovenia where we find the Malvasia example on our list are actually regions that used to, once upon a time, belong to Italy.
But to keep things simple, I only want to talk about the wines we have on offer this week:
The first comes from Kozlovic with their Malvasia 2014 vintage. Their 2012 vintage took Gold Medal at the International Wine Awards. This fine example has a wonderfully light and floral nose. The palate is crisp and zesty with the most enticing flavours of ripe melon, peach, apricot. For me this White Wine, and indeed the next one, could not be any more perfect for our tapas: Refreshing, exciting, and lovely acidity.
The second Malvasia and one of the newest additions to our list comes from Slovenia’s Gasper and again, has just the most wonderful fruit character. For any Sauvignon Blanc fanatics out there this is definitely a route to conversion, with those similar tropical notes, zesty finish and again a crisp lasting acidity on the finish.
I urge you to pop in to The Bench in Ramsgate, or Ashford, and try them. They are shining examples of the quality that comes out of the lesser known wine producing countries of Europe. As I said a couple of weeks back, I have decided to spend the next few months of Wine of the Week’s shouting loud and proud about wines that have been forgotten, that need forgiveness, or that simply don’t get the press or appreciation that they deserve
The Kozlovic, Malvasia is reduced from £25.95 to £19.75 and the Gasper, Malvasia is reduced from £28.95 to £21.71! Alternatively, buy online and enjoy at home with our new Web Shop!