As we write this, we are sitting outdoors, in the shade of the umbrella, enjoying a beautiful Indian summer day. We are surrounded by a garden full of tomatoes, and we can't help ourselves from picking and nibbling on the sweet little golds, which are like candy this time of year. Sometimes when the season transitions, it seems like the weather can't make up its mind (I packed away my shorts a couple weeks ago and am now regretting it)! This week, the theme of the wines is versatility. Both are light enough to sip on a warm fall day, yet have the character to keep you cozy as the day cools into evening. Think of them like layering your clothes, but you only have to pack one bottle!
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This wonderful, dry Riesling is the result of a joint project between Mosel winemaker Phillip Kettern, and the famous Portuguese winemaker Dirk Niepoort and his son. It is the product of a special vineyard in Mosel that the team discovered a couple of years ago, which was planted on steep terraces in double rows, just like those of the Douro Valley where Niepoort is from. Hence the name "Socalos". The team farms the vineyard with minimal intervention and sustainable practices, including the help of a small herd of sheep that controls the grass and pests.
Fresh and minerally with notes of apple, quince, and grapefruit, this wine is deliciously layered with all the right elements to sit on the table in any season. You can drink this with so many foods, like seafood, pork, and Asian dishes, like Indian or Thai curry.
For our red this week we travel to Sicily, where we find our friends of the COS estate. We have featured many of their wines over the years, and have continuously been enamored by their unique, minerally, complex wines grown on biodynamically-farmed vineyards. This wine is a blend of 60% Nero d’Avola and 40% Frappato --- both native to Sicily. It is full of minerals with wonderful freshness, yet bold depth. A beautiful nose jumps out of the glass with notes of raspberry liqueur, rose, and lilac. This is a lighter wine on the palate with pronounced tannins and great complexity that will continue to open up as the hours go by, so be patient when sipping this! We love drinking this with tomato-based seafood pastas or cioppino-style fish stew -- favorites in our household year round.