Wine Fundamentals I class from the International Sommelier Guild. Our final exam is on Wednesday and I have been busy making flash cards of my notes so I can study hard for the next few days. I've even booked my sister for tomorrow night so that she can test me. Maybe we'll make a drinking game out of it (for every question I get right, I get to sip!). Now there's some liquid encouragement for you!
The Periquita grape is also known as the Castelao grape in other parts of the world but in Portual, and where this wine is from, it's known by it's more popular name, the Periquita grape. Now, this isn't a single varietal wine I'm drinking as it's especially hard to find but it is 95% Periquita so for the purposes of what I'm trying to accomplish, it is.
The grape is found in southern coastal regions and is sometimes used in the production of port. If you can speak portugese, you know the word periquita means parrot. It is a very tannic wine in its youth but does soften as it ages. The year I'm drinking is a 2006.
The wine is Jose Maria Da Fonseca Periquita. Aside from the crazy annoying music that greets you on their website, the site is great looking and fun to browse through.
What's interesting is in the description of the wine- right off the bat I'm at odds with them. They describe their wine as full bodied and intensly coloured while I would not say either. And not in a bad way either. The wine is not as intense as I thought it would be. To me, it's similar to a Pinot Noir or Gamay. And I certainly don't find it at all to be a full bodied grape. It's complex but at most medium bodied.
Off the nose I get some strawberries but the smell of alcohol seems to take over. Sipping the wine, I get a balanced and fruity wine, but the tannins to me are still quite intense with a medium acidity to it. It takes some getting used to. I drink it alone tonight but last night I paired it with a grilled steak done to medium rare along with a Mediterrannean salad and I felt they were a perfect complement to each other.
What was interesting to me is the lack of quality in the cork. After all, Portugal is the main producer of cork for the wine world. Apparently they give all the good cork to France. The cork barely held together as I popped it out of the bottle.
I would drink this wine again, but I would make sure to drink it with food for sure. It is not a sipping wine at all (though they do suggest that you can with this wine on the website). Oh those Portugese.
I can't believe I'm only 10 wines away from accomplishing a goal I'd set out to do nearly two years ago. And 14 wines and I've met my goal of sipping one wine a week for two years. I'm not sure if I'll continue this blog or not or maybe shift its vision a bit, we'll see how the next few weeks goes!