Dessert wines come in many different styles, from Late Harvest and Noble Rot, to tasty Ice Wines from our friends up north. Typically, dessert wines are enjoyed after a hearty meal, either paired with a delicious dessert or as the dessert itself. The most technically correct method of making a dessert wine is to stop fermentation so there are natural residual sugars left in the finished wine. It is also important that dessert wines have good natural acidity to balance the natural sugars so that the wine does not come across as too cloying. I emphasize natural, since some producers add cane sugar and/or artificial flavoring extracts to a dry base wine, which, for me, detracts a bit from the finished product.
King Family Vineyard Loreley 2008
Matthieu Finot, winegrower at King Family Vineyards and a French native, has crafted a delectable and complex dessert wine in the French vin de paille method. This method is suitable to warm climates (like here in Virginia) and refers to a method where grape clusters are dried out on mats or racks resulting in raisin-like berries that contain droplets of highly concentrated, sweet juice. Wines made using this method are sometimes refered to as "straw wines", since grape clusters were traditionally spread out on straw mats for drying. The King Family Vineyard’s Loreley 2008 is a blend of 50% Viognier and 50% Petit Manseng and barrel fermented in new oak barrels. In the glass, the wine displays a clear medium yellow-gold color. The swirl and sniff offers mandarin orange, tropical fruits, roasted hazelnuts, and sweet toasty notes. On the sip, the Loreley 2008 is complex, round, and rich with a smooth mouth-feel and good acidity to balance the natural sugars, finishing long with a lingering trail of fruitiness laced with soft oak. This lip-smacking liquid gem comes packaged in an attractive 375ml bottle and clocks in at 13.5% alcohol by volume with a real cork enclosure. This wine retails for $24.94, which is a fair price for a wine of this style and quality and can be found at the tasting room. Enjoy this wine with rich foods like foie gras and pâté, or do like me, and savor it on its own. Have a question about this post, friends? Feel free to leave a comment or send me an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org, and as always, Happy Sipping! Stay tuned friends ...More to come!
Info: King Family Vineyards, 6550 Roseland Farm Crozet, Virginia 22932
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