Tag Archives: natural wine

Try something natural… Ancilla Lugana, 1909, 2015

In a nutshell:

Produced without the addition of sulphur, this wine has a super ripe pear and white peach character, textured with a very long and saline finish.

The wine:

The grapes were destemmed and lightly pressed, followed by a cold maceration on the skins. A slow fermentation took place in steel casks at a low temperature. The wine was aged on its fine lees, in stainless steel casks for five months, then saw further bottle ageing for one month, prior to release.

Tasting note:

52391-1909_hdIntense aromas of grapefruit and citrus fruits are combined with intriguing undertones of jasmine and elderflower. These sensations come to fruition and linger deliciously on the palate, harmoniously balanced with notable body and the discovery of unsuspected warmth.

Try it with:

A food loving wine, this accompanies antipasti, bruschetta, risotto and grilled white fish with a twist of lemon.

The producer:

Ancilla Lugana is located on the shores of Lake Garda in North East Italy. The estate comprises two vineyards: La Ghidina, located in Lugana di Sirmoine, the heart of the production area of some of the most elegant whites in Italy, and Cadellora, situated in Villa franca di Verona. It is run by Luisella Benedetti, the third generation of women to run this estate, having inherited the farm from her mother, who inherited in turn from her mother, named Ancilla.

Ancilla was an extraordinary, energetic woman, who worked the fields and got up at 3am every day make her wine producing dream come true. Following in the footsteps of her grandmother, with the passion for the land in her blood, Luisella Benedetti gave up her career in finance and took over the family business in the early 2000’s.

With a hands-on approach, Luisella is involved in every aspect of winemaking and viticulture. The lifelong commitment of her grandmother and mother is a passion now shared by Luisella, which is clear to see in this exciting and pure collection of Lugana wines.

2017: It’s sure to be a grape year

Sparkling wine:

2016 has without a doubt been the year for sparkling wines in the wine industry. A trend that we have seen growing and growing, with the UK seeing a huge 80% rise in sparkling wine sales over the past five years – according to HMRC figures.

Italian sparkling wine has become the dominant force in this arena; recent Mintel figures reveal that 28% of all consumers have purchased Prosecco in the past six months, compared to just 18% that had bought Champagne and 18% that had bought Cava.

We predict this demand for Italian sparkling wine continuing well into 2017 with Prosecco being joined as the market leader by its co-patriots; Lambrusco and Pignoletto (pronounced peen-yo-let-o).

Originating from North-East Italy, Lambrusco, a red sparkling wine, is the name for both the grape and the designated growing areas in which it is produced. The wine’s bright acidity, subtle fizz and dark tannic fruit lends itself perfectly to foods synonymous to Italy, such as fatty charcuterie and hearty pasta sauces.

Pignoletto, is an ancient grape variety originally grown in the hills outside Bologna in Emilia-Romagna, North-East Italy, not far from where Prosecco is produced. Like Prosecco, Pignoletto is made using the charmat method (second fermentation in steel tanks) which produces a crisp, refreshing and fruity wine – a great alternative to Prosecco!

Natural, organic, biodynamic and sustainability:

Natural, organic, biodynamic and sustainability are the current buzz words in the wine industry and are set to become front of mind for the customer in 2017. These styles have become commonplace on wine lists and the shelves of independent retailers in recent months, with consumers keen to explore wines which have greener credentials and have been produced with minimal intervention or impact on the environment.

Emerging regions:

In 2017 the popularity of wines from emerging regions will continue as customers are keen to try more exotic and interesting varietals. Two Eastern Mediterranean nations in particular are set to take off – Turkey and Greece. Not only has the quality of Turkish wines improved dramatically over the last 5 years, but Turkish influenced restaurants have also become increasingly popular thanks to the rise in eastern Mediterranean cuisine and the Mangal theme (think new openings such as Neil Rankin’s Temper and Yosma).

Also set to grow is the demand of Greek wine. The whites in particular stand out from the crowd with their striking elegance and finesse, and aromatic qualities that offer the consumer an excellent and cheaper alternative to old world favourites, as well as providing the opportunity to taste something different and exciting.

The trend of quality over quantity is one we will see develop further in 2017 as consumers are becoming more likely to opt for a more premium wine that is memorable. This is partly due to an increase in wine knowledge with today’s consumer becoming more discerning, and party due to overall a decline in overall alcohol consumption.

Whatever 2017 holds, we are sure to see both the on and off trade branch out and experiment with new and interesting wines to feed their customers imaginations.