This bottling is a complex mélange, hard to describe. A blend of harvests 2012, 2013, and 2014, during which the winemakers passed through the vineyards picking certain clusters, which they then dried in the dark, with fans, for ten to 14 days. The fruit was vinified whole-cluster with a long maceration, then added to a solera, topped off each year, until bottling in 2015.
The color is limpid, clear and crystalline, but this stands in contrast to the aromatics, which are raisin-y, plummy and dried. It also has a cherry-candy quality that plays against these the sweet dried fruits. On the palate there is a surprising amount of acidity, like a red candle lighting up the inside.
It’s reminiscent of a Veneto appassimento wine, but without Corvina’s pronounced tannins. It’s a curious and interesting elixir and would be amazing with a mixed cheese course.
NV Birichino Grenache Old Vines Hommage à Georges Besson Central Coast
14.5% abv | $30 (500 ml)