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More, More, More… WIMG!

… how do you like it? More, more, more.

Well, that is a throwback to the disco days of my youth, 1976. When it comes to sharing wine, it’s always more.

Corte Gardoni Bianco di Custoza Greoto 2021

Corte Gardoni, Bianco di Custoza Greoto 2021, Veneto, Italy

This barrel-blended white wine from Corte Gardoni is scrumptious. This northeastern wine region hangs north over the city of Venice and spreads west just past Verona. Well-known wines from this region include Prosecco, Soave, Valpolicella, and others.

I chose this wine for an Italian tasting I did in June. This white blend starts with 40% Gargenega (the lone grape in all Soave wines), 25% Trebbiano, 10% Trebbianello, 10% Cortese, and 15% mix of other varieties. These grapes are fermented separately and then blended to create a wine that can stand on its own or be paired with food.

How would I describe wimg (what’s in my glass)?

Medium-bodied, supported by ample acidity. Orchard and citrus fruits of ripe red apples, tart green apples, pears, apricots, lemon, and lemon zest.

I would serve this wine to anyone who enjoys unoaked Chardonnay, Spanish Godello, Italian Soave, or French Chenin Blanc.

This wine sells for $17.99


Skinner Vineyards Native Red 2020, El Dorado, California

El Dorado is best known for the California gold rush of the mid-1800s. But miners also needed wine, so some families came to support the effort.

The winery explains this wine the best, so here you go!

A  pursuit to revive the Skinner family heritage. We wanted to make a wine that, perhaps, cannot be made anywhere else. And so was born our Native Red, a tribute to our original brand name, J. Skinner Native Wine & Brandy, dating back to 1861. Fun, flirty, and mouthwatering, this rare heritage blend can be your food’s best friend or simply a way to jazz up a Wednesday evening. 

The wine is a blend of a few well-known varieties with a few you’ve never heard of. And yes, red and white grapes are blended into this wine.

Petite Bouschet, Mission, Trousseau, Carignan, Cinsault, Grenache, Counoise, Mourvèdre, Zinfandel, Marsanne, Viognier.

Gary and I are both big fans of this wine. We chill it to 48° to accentuate the lively acidity. Then, as the wine warms in your glass, the cornucopia of red fruit flavors deepens. The already slight tannins soften, and holy cow, I could sip this all day. Gary loves the soft tannins and lovely herbal notes.

This wine sells for $21.99

moreRafael Palacios Louro do Bolo (Godello) 2020, Valdeorras, Galicia, Spain

You may find this hard to believe, but my sister turned me onto a wine I had never heard of. She was in León, Spain for work. The Valdeorras wine region is one of the closest to León, so it makes sense that Valdeorras wines would be readily available. My sister loves Chardonnay, oaked or unoaked. She asked for a wine similar to Chardonnay. The server chose Godello because of its medium to full body, creamy texture, and aromas and flavors straight from the orchard. She LOVED it, sent me a picture of the bottle, and said, “Get this for me.”

The wine she had, I found in another state and had some shipped to SC—anything for my sister. Since then, I started my quest to find excellent examples of Godello available here in SC.

This wine is one of my latest discoveries. However, because this is not a well-known grape variety, I must continue my mission to discover the very best examples in Charleston.

This wine is medium pale yellow with greenish edges. The first sip as it hits your touch is a blast of mouthwatering acid. And I mean almost atomic. With the second sip, the blast mellowed – a lot – leaving behind the juicy creaminess that makes this wine special.

I describe this wine as – creamy and honeyed with stone fruit and lots of apple on the palate. The lingering finish hangs on your tongue and continues to tingle the gums. This is a great pick. Hard to find, and once this vintage is gone, it will no longer be available in Charleston. But I may stockpile some, so let me know if you need a Godello fix.

I love this wine. It sells for $26.99.

Domaine du Bagnol Cassis Rosé 2020, 2021 and 2022, Provence, France
Absolutely more!

Gary and I had the pleasure of tasting a three-vintage vertical of this rosé. Friends and fellow wine geeks hosted the event at their home. This is the second year for the tasting but our first as we could not make it last year.

For the record, this wine is a blend of starts with a base of Grenache, followed by Cinsault, and then Mourvédre. Each vintage has different percentages depending on the harvest.

So, what did we learn?

Group consensus says this wine drinks best if you hold it for a year. So buy the 2022 vintage now (the most recent vintage) and drink it in the Spring or Summer of 2024. I am told the same was true the year before.

The top spot goes to the 2021 vintage.

We concluded that after a year longer in the bottle, the sum of the parts is much more integrated. This results in a wine with a balance of acidity, red fruit flavors, minerality, texture, and finish. This aging creates a complexity that is rare for a rosé. No one element outshines another. Frankly, the wine is stunning as a cocktail and food wine.

So what about the oldest wine, in this case, the 2020 vintage? Here is when the group thinking started to vary. Some found the vintage faded but still had a place at the table. Others were happy to move onward. Gary was in the latter camp while I was in the former.

And finally, what about the current vintage 2022 – today? This is my opinion only. Had we not compared the recent vintage with the two previous vintages, I may have been delighted with the 2022. Perhaps a bit acid- and fruit-heavy, it is still a delicious and beautiful wine. But up against the 2021, there was no comparison.

So what am I going to do? I will buy some of the 2022 vintage before it runs out. But I will hold it until next year for what I hope will be a magical experience.

This wine sells for $33.99 a bottle.more

If you missed the last WIMG, go here.


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