May 26 2021

All Things Avennia: New Varietals Support Group 2.0

Watch a recording of the session here.

List of Wines from the Group

1)    2019 Gavi del Comune di Gavi DOCG (Cortese) from Piedmont, Italy

2)    2017 Angelini Pergola DOC (Aleatico) from Marche, Italy

3)    2019 Abbazia di Novacella Schiava from Alto Adige, Italy

4)    2017 Turasan Emir from Cappadocia, Turkey

5)    2019 Diren Collection Boğazkere from Tokat, Turkey

6)    2016 Tenuta Cucco Barolo Nebbiolo from Piedmont, Italy


Unanswered Questions 

1)    What does TDN stand for?

Casey helped me out a little later in the presentation by putting it in the chat box (Thanks Casey!), but here it is: 1,1,6-trimethyl-1,2-dihydronaphthalene. There have also been some interesting new studies about TDN, including perception thresholds, free TDN v. precursors, and how bottle enclosures interact with it (like natural and synthetic corks stripping 50% of TDN within the first 2 years after bottling). Check out this great article from Wine Anorak- Global Wine Journal blog.


2)    What’s the story behind the hybrid grape Chambourcin?

Chambourcin is a hybrid grape variety created by Joannes Seyve in France and was only made available as of 1963. Its grape parentage is unknown, but Seyve usually relied on Seibel hybrids (hybrid varieties made in the 1860s by Albert Seibel from European and American varieties to combat the phylloxera crisis) when creating new varieties. It has resistance to fungal diseases (particularly downy mildew) and is very cold hardy. It is indeed a teinturier grape, meaning it has red pulp and skins, so it is often used to darken the color of other wines in a blend. Most Chambourcin is grown in the US (80%) with the next largest plantings in Australia, New Zealand, and Canada


Fact Check

1)    I mentioned that Vermentino was grown primarily in central Italy on the East coast on the Adriatic Sea…

I had Verdicchio in my brain (which is also a good substitute for Sauvignon Blanc if you want to try it!) which is indeed primarily grown in the Marche region of Italy on the Eastern coast. But Vermentino is grown mostly in Sardinia, Provence (called “Rolle”), and Ligura (called “Pigato”).


2)    I said Petit Verdot was, “one of the main blending grapes of Bordeaux” …

What I meant was, “one of the blending grapes in Bordeaux…” The main grapes are Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Cabernet Franc. Petit Verdot is usually a very small percentage of the blend, if used at all.


3)    Hondarribi Beltza…

…is actually spelled Hondarrabi Beltza. Oops!


4)    When talking about how Napoleon liked wines made from Aleatico on the island of Elba during his exile, I said that Elba was where he spent the rest of his life…

Totally forgot about the fact that after his exile to Elba in 1814, he escaped and went back to France just to gain power and then lose at the Battle of Waterloo in 1815. He was then exiled AGAIN to the island of Saint Helena in the southern Atlantic, where he died 6 years later.


5)    The pitcher that Txakoli is traditionally poured from…

Is called a porrón. And this can actually be used to pour the wine directly in people’s mouths! Without it, bartenders will often just pour directly from the bottle, but still from great heights, into flat bottom glasses, in order to froth up the wine, and release some of the CO2 that might be in the wine (primarily from the Getariako Txakolina sub-region).

6)    I mentioned I’ve had a rosé from Bardolino…

It is true, but Bardolino is not the name of a grape. It is a DOC region from Verona on the eastern shores of Lake Garda. They make red and rosé wines from similar grapes to Valpolicella– mainly Corvina, Rondinella, and Molinara.

LAST Session: Thursday, May 27th, 4:30PM (PDT)

Topic: Rosé Day!