Owner of Metro Wines

Winetones Spanish Wine Tasting


Tickets HERE!

News Release: July 18th, 2019
About:  Winetones Tasting with Marta Plana @MetroWines
Please join us for a Seated Wine Tasting and Class on Spanish Wines with Marta Plana, owner of Winetones, and Andy Hale, Director of Wine Education @MetroWines, on September 12th from 5:30 to 6:30 @MetroWines.
Spanish Wines from Winetones Portfolio will be "on the taste" with presentation on the philosophy of the company, history of the varietals, regions of origin and the wineries as well as her travels around the world to promote Spanish Wines. And expect Spanish cheese!
The cost for the evening is $15. To reserve your seat, please call (828) 575-9525 or online here: https://metrowinesasheville.com/store/product/winetones-tasting-on-september-12th/
About Marta Plana:
Marta Plana is originally from Catalonia, the northwest part of Spain. She was born in the Penedes area, in a little coastal town just south of Barcelona. She has been almost 20 years working in the wine industry, and has work hand by hand with more than 50 wineries from all over Spain focused on the US market during the last 12. Learning and experiencing the importance of consistency, coherence and also defining goals as instrumental in the success of any wine brand that wants to offer something unique to the US market, has been their main goal.
She moved to the US in October 2017 where she founded The Winetones Inc, her own wine import company, that brings 3 very differentiated portfolios into the US and gives a great scope of what Spain has to offer.

"There are more than 10,000 wines in Spain and only one is unique, the one you choose!" says Marta. "Excellence in service is a big deal to me as well - sometimes simple, sometimes sophisticated - it's just what I have always done."
See Marta's Impressive Resume here: https://www.linkedin.com/in/marta-plana-04578619/en
Contact for MetroWines: Gina Trippi
Charlotte Street! It's the Next BIG Thing!
"Big Shop Selection. Small Shop Service"
Shop:  828-575-9525
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July Film Discussion

"Io Non Ho Paura" (I am Not Afraid)

Film Discussion with Robert Formento of "Ciao Asheville"

Sunday, July 28th starting 1pm @MetroWines.

Admission is "on the house" and $7 for glass of Red or White Italian Wine.

Ciao Asheville is dedicated to raising awarness about Italian Culture in Asheville. We believe that a review of some of the best regarded films will be a window into the history, attitudes and hopes of Itlay.

Robert's Film Summary:

With this next film (released in 2003) we visit Italy in the turbulent 1970s, sometimes called the “Years of Lead”. Political and ransom killings were rampant at that time. The worst of it often involved kidnapping children of wealthy families for ransom.


This movie, Io Non Ho Paura (I Am Not Afraid), is loosely based on one such kidnapping of a 10 year old boy from Milan. He is taken to a small impoverished town in the south of Italy. The village is tiny and there are only a handful of children who roam the area around them.  The story is about how he was discovered by another 10 year old boy from the local town.


This film can be described as a crime mystery thriller, but uniquely seen through the eyes of a ten year old boy. You get to observe how the boy confronts the idea that the family and neighbors whom he loves and trusts are the same people who kidnapped the boy and shackled him in a deep underground cellar. Does he decide to protect his family or protect the kidnapped boy?


Io Non Ho Paura, is based on the novel of the same name by Niccolo Ammaniti. The movie was very popular in Italy where it won several awards, but had a very limited release in America. The director, Gabriele Salvatore also directed Mediterraneo which won the Oscar for best foreign film in 1992. 


Please reserve your seat HERE!

or call (828) 575-9525. 

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Staff Pick: Zach (The Manager)

Domaine de la Pepiere ‘La Pepie’ Muscadet

Image result for la pepie 2017 muscadet

"I chose this wine because of it’s minerality, body weight and balance. I like white wines that have a little richness to them without tasting wood from the oak.  
This wine is made ‘sur lie’ which translates to on the lees. After fermentation the wine is aged with sediment and stirred occasionally to give the wine it’s fuller body.
It is organically farmed and hand-harvested. If you see a Muscadet on a wine list, there will most likely be shelf fish on the menu. Very versatile with lighter fare,
but classically paired with mussels, oysters and scallops."

Internet Competitive and Often Better at  $14.99

Because so many of you have come for a featured wine and it was out of stock
at the importer or temporarily out of stock @MetroWines, we want to give you
the opportunity to snag a bottle now! Click on link and shop!


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August Wine Focus Group

** Save the Date: August 14th **

Image result for michele d'aprix

Asheville Wine Focus Group
Hosted by Michele d'Aprix (Pentimento) 
and Christopher Campbell of C and P Wines

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Great Rose' Tasting August

News:  Monday, July 15th, 2019
About: Great Rose Tasting for August @MetroWines 
Pleas join us on Saturday, August 3rd all day long from 10am to 7pm for The Great RoseTasting @MetroWines.
"Our distributors and importers have been asking to show off their respective Rose portfolios," says Gina Trippi, co-owner of MetroWines. "This tasting will be hosted by Stacy Strong of Empire Distribution who will bring one of the shop favorites, Rustenberg Petit Verdot Rose from South Africa, and two from one of our top importers, Thomas Meunier, including the sparkling Rose Granit and Laurent Miguel."
As always, 6 bottles of Rose from around the world will be "on the taste" and "on the house."

Contact for MetroWines: Gina Trippi
Charlotte Street! It's the Next BIG Thing!
"Big Shop Selection. Small Shop Service"
Shop:  828-575-9525
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Belstar Prosecco and History

"Isle Be Waiting"
5 Mediterranean Islands that offer fabulous food and lodging
but are not so well known making these locations a perfect escape.


Let's add history to the escape. One of the suggestions is Mazzorbo.
There you will find the a wine villa owned by the Bisol Family making wine
for centuries. And you know their work well. Bisol makes Belstar!

Image result for belstar rose sparkling

A unique sparkler created by one of Prosecco's top producers,
the Cuvee Rose is a blend of Merlot, Pinot Noir and Sauvignon Blanc. 
Fresh, juicy, somewhat soft and sweet with citrus, licorice, melon and ripe strawberries. Clean, easy style with light, creamy mousse.

The history of Bisol dates back to 1542, when the Bisol family first began cultivating grapes. Today, Gianluca Bisol has assumed the role of president and CEO while his brother, Desiderio, holds the position of chief enologist and technical director.
With 500 years of winemaking tradition, Bisol produces a range of organically farmed and internationally recognized Valdobbiadene Superiore DOCG crus. 

And speaking of history...UNESCO has just last week declared
Valdobbiadene Superiore  DOCG a World Heritage Site. check it out:


Related image

That's a LOT of History for $12.99
$14.99 at wine.com and, not surprisingly, unavailable.

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The New California Wineries and Wine!

From The MetroWines Book Review Department

Image result for the new architecture of wine hebert

With well-told stories and stunning photography, author Heather Hebert
features the architecture of 25 California wineries in her alluring new book. 

As wine tourism has increased, California vintners created splendid spaces where visitors can taste their wines and enjoy conversations. In place of imitating old-world European estates, grand architectural statements or quirky forays into bohemianism, the new architecture of wine has evolved into a celebration of California’s topography, agricultural heritage, historic architectural vernacular,
and forward-thinking passion for sustainability and design.

The 25 wineries featured in The New Architecture of Wine, all built within
the last ten years, include buildings designed by top architects Juancarlos Fernandez and Howard Backen, among others. These wineries form an authentic expression of  passion for the land and its heritage—an homage to California.

But the future is not just a new style of California architecture,
it's also a new style of California wine. A brief review of some of the new
California Chardonnays and Pinot Noirs shows that the style is shunning the ultraripe, high-octane wines to which California staked a claim.
The number of producers dedicated to "real" and terroir transparency has grown exponentially in just a few years. Even commercial wineries are scaling
back sugar ripeness and adding sugar as well as dialing down the new oak. 

Raj Parr, one of the winemakers leading the charge, says:  

"Every important wine has a strong sense of will behind it,
and every serious winery shares a desire to find a deeper knowledge
of their vineyards; to discover the beauty that lies within the balance
between the grape, soil and microclimate.

In my regular travels to the best wine regions of the world,
I have also included forays into less well-known appellations.
Tasting at both pedigreed domaines and modest cellars,
has led me to appreciate, equally, wines meant for the well-heeled cellar
as well as wines best drunk early and appreciated for their immediacy. I have discovered that what is consistent in all the wines I admire
is the importance of minimal intervention: growing healthy,
balanced grapes without the use of chemicals and making
and bottling wines without manipulation."

All that said, Your "Read it With Wine" is:

Donkey & Goat
Jared and Tracey Brandt in Berkeley, California
The Gallivanter Red Blend, $25

Image result for donkey and goat winery

Donkey & Goat Winery is owned and operated by Jared and Tracey Brandt
in Berkeley, California. We make “natural wines” which is a term that covers both
the vineyard and the cellar. That is what distinguishes natural wine– the extension
of natural farming philosophies that drive the practices for sustainable,
natural & biodynamic farming into the cellar.
Different every year  depending on quality of the grapes, the blend tends to be a heavy percentage of Pinot Noir with Grenache and Mourvedre, Merlot and Syrah. Under 1000 cases made which makes this their greatest produced quantity for any wine.  The 2017 offers candied fruits with fresh strawberry and raspberry, pomegranate, naval orange, citrus oils, pine, leaves and Asian spice box. 

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Tarima Hill is Back

Image result for 2015 tarima hill monastrell

92 Points from Wine Spectator and #17 on Wine Spectator 2017 Top 100!
This red shows grace and depth. Black cherry, plum, mineral and smoke flavors mingle harmoniously over well-integrated tannins, while lively acidity keeps this focused. Not showy, but all the pieces fit together. Balanced, in the modern style. Drink now through 2025.

$16.99 at wine.com
*** $15.99 @MetroWines ***

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July Focus Group Winner

Eva Luna 2016 Garda

Cabernet Suavignon & Csabernet Franc Blend

The decision was virtually unanimous! 
This blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc is spectacular! 

As a second generation producer in a region that her father Sergio Zenato put on the map, Nadia Zenato and her mother Carla Prospero created Evaluna out of a deep love but also deep knowledge of the area. Evaluna (Eve + Moon) evokes the passion and a long practice in the vineyard sites of Lake Garda by the Zenato family. Evaluna in name and intent endeavors to break the mold of what is considered possible in a land of diverse agricultural abundance.

Customers like that this wine would not only hold up to heavy flavors and cold weather foods but could also be chilled for a summer dinner. Eva Luna offers an opportunity to really taste the cabernet grape without the full throttle of a California bottle or the vegetal flavor, not always completely pleasant, this variety can show.  This wine is very flavorfull yet light.

Some of our BEST Participant comments:

"Full bodied but light."

"Not too overwhelming for a red."

"Yes! So MF good. Summer."


Most participants guessed price to be between 1$18 and $20 or higher. Eva Luna is $15.99 @MetroWines.


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Donati Family Vineyard Tasting

News Release: July 10, 2019

About: Ciao Asheville Presents Donati Family Vineyards!
Ciao Asheville presents Donati Family Vineyards on Thursday, August 22nd, 2019 from 5 to 6:30 @MetroWines. Adam Chesia, East Coast Representative for Donati Family Vineyards, who will host a tasting of Donati Wines "on the house" and tell us all about the winery, the history and the current winemaker, Briana Heywood!
About Donati Family Vineyards: 
As a young boy, Ron Donati grew up in South San Francisco, the son of a first generation Italian-American family. One of his fondest memories was the sights and smells of his grandfather making wine in his basement. Like most Italian immigrants, Albino Donati made his own wine for the family dinner table. As an adult, Ron became a successful entrepreneur with a penchant for making quality products that were attainable to all, not just a select few. This same passion serves as the foundation and guiding mission of Donati Family Vineyard today. It is our goal to produce wines of exceptional quality regardless of budget.

The Donati Family Estate Vineyard site enjoys a variety of soils from limestone to decomposed granite to clay loam, and access to the cooling ocean breezes of the Monterey Bay. Like much of southern Napa, Sonoma, and Monterey counties, Paicines has long warm days followed by cool nights.

The vineyard is planted to various select clones of Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Malbec, Syrah, Pinot Grigio, Pinot Blanc and Petit Verdot. Vine selections are carefully screened for viral diseases prior to planting, ensuring that the future of the vineyard is secure, and that vine health and fruit integrity remain intact from planting through harvest.

About the Winemaker: Briana Heywood:

Briana Heywood joined the Donati Family Vineyard team in 2016 as Head Winemaker. She has been involved in the wine industry for the past 10 years and gained her knowledge primarily through hands-on experience. Prior to starting at Donati, Briana was Enologist at JLohr Wines in Paso Robles for the past 7 years, along with prior internships at Eberle Winery and Gallo Vineyards. She earned her Enology and Wine Business degrees from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, in 2009.

Possessing experience in both small and large wineries, Briana is equipped with a unique perspective on maintaining consistency of hand-crafted premium wines in ever increasing quantities. This experience and perspective will take the Donati Family Wines forward as we continue to build our brand and extend our reach.

Follow Donati on FB here: https://www.facebook.com/DonatiWine/

Contact for Ciao Asheville: Gail Rampersaud
Contact for MetroWines: Gina Trippi
Charlotte Street! It's the Next BIG Thing!
"Big Shop Selection. Small Shop Service"
Shop:  828-575-9525
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Donati is Coming!

*** Save the Date: August 22nd ***

Ciao Asheville Presents
The Donati Family Vineyards Wine Tasting
from 5 to 6:30 @MetroWines

Image result for donati family vineyards

"As a young boy, Ron Donati grew up in South San Francisco, the son of a first generation Italian-American family.
One of his fondest memories was the sights and smells of his grandfather making wine in his basement.
Like most Italian immigrants, Albino Donati made his own wine for the family dinner table.
As an adult, Ron became a successful entrepreneur with a penchant for making quality products that were attainable to all,
not just a select few. This same passion serves as the foundation and guiding mission of Donati Family Vineyard today.
It is our goal to produce wines of exceptional quality regardless of budget."

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Invention of The Road Trip

The Invention of The Road Trip

Image result for vagabonds henry ford model t

Henry Ford cranked up his Model T with his fellow "Vagabonds"
John Burroughs and Thomas Edison and took to the road.
Between 1914 and 1924, the threesome encouraged their countrymen
to fill up their gas tanks, gather canned food and hit the road.

>>>>> Flash forward 100 years!
Take a road trip with canned wine!

Underwood from Union Wine Co. in Oregon

Image result for underwood in cans
Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, Rose, Rose Bubbles and just plain Bubbles!

"We believe that the contents are more important than the container;
that good wine should be able to go anywhere. We love our wine,
we just don't drink it with our pinkies in the air."

A can, $5.99 @MetroWines, is about two glasses of wine. Drink responsibly!
(Concerned about the environment? Cans lighten the load, literally,
saving on packaging, waste and transportation costs.)

#Pinkies Down

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Vesuvius and Wine

‘Fresco with a Landscape’ from the Villa of the Papyri, ca. 40 B.C. 
In 79A.D., Vesuvius erupted destroying lives and the Roman town of Herculaneum.
But many buildings and a collection of scrolls were preserved. You can see these pieces of history,
"Buried by Vesuvius: Treasures from the Villa dei Papriri" from now until October 28th
at the J. Paul Getty Villa in Pacific Pailsades, California


Can't Go?
Order the Exhibition Book Here:


Your Read it With Wine


Radici means ‘roots’ in Italian, which signifies Mastroberardino’s devotion
to safeguarding the indigenous varieties of ancient Irpinia. The grape Fiano was known
in antiquity as “apiana” as it was noticed that bees had a particular affinity for this vine.
A rare vine traditionally found near hazelnut orchards, Fiano d'Avellino appears to have adopted
some of these notes into its flavor profile. The label reproduces a detail from a painting by Micozzi,
which adorns the vaults of Mastroberardino's refined cellars. Straw-yellow in color with aromas
of pear, pineapple, acacia, toasted nut, honey and spring flowers. On the palate,
this wine has excellent acidity, yet fine smoothness, with a hint of toasted almond in the finish.

Wine Spectator: 90 Points
A refreshing, clean-cut white, with hints of chalk and saline creating a tangy underpinning
to the flavors of Asian pear, kiwifruit, Marcona almond and lime blossom.
Light- to medium-bodied, with a lingering finish. Drink now through 2022.

Wine Enthusiast: 90 Points
White spring flower, acacia and tropical fruit aromas. On the smooth, rounded palate,
tangy acidity and a mineral vein energize ripe yellow apple, juicy pear and a drop of honey.
A hint of toasted almond signals the close.

$21.99 at wine.com and $23.99 at Grapeswine. com in NY.
Altogether now: Shop LocalLY and Save!

$19.99 @MetroWines

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Victor Hugo and Bordeaux

Victor Hugo spent over a decade in exile on the Channel islands waiting out the reign of Napoleon III.
Here, Hugo completed some of his most famous works including "Les Miserables."


Image result for victor hugo house guernsey

So, in addition to writing, turns out Victor was a bit of a decorator as well. Word has it that Hugo spent 
the afternoons trawling antique dealers and junk shops for decor. Sort of early shabby chic.
The house is now open to the public. Sounds great. Can't go? Take the interest tour and...
Hugo lived on Guernsey off the coast of France. In all likelihood, Bordeaux was on the Hugo Table.

La Rame Bordeaux 2016, $19.99
Imported by Rosenthal Wine Merchants

Image result for la rame bordeaux 2016

 Vineyards for this red are at the base of the hillside vineyards of the estate
in the village of Sainte Croix du Mont and are composed of sand, limestone and clay.
A blend of Merlot (60%) and Cabernet Sauvignon (40%) from 30 year old vines.
Wine is fermented and aged in temperature-controlled vats. Bottled one year after harvest.

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Emily's Pick: Vermentino

*** STAFF PICK: Emily ***

The purpose of setting our our staff picks is for you to find the palate closest to your own.
If you find it, and you trust them! you might feel more comfortable venturing into a new grape, country or style.
So, this week, Emily is up to bat. Emily is a sommelier with years of experience in wine work.

Cardedu Nuo Vermentino, $19.99

Image result for cardedu nuo vermentino

I chose this wine because I prefer wines that have a savory quality.
Cardedu Nuo Vermentino definitely has that savory bite
with hints of smoked pineapple,dried green herbs and sea salt.
I love pairing this wine with seafood risotto and other seafood dishes. 

Teaching Moment: 

Hailed for centuries as a Mediterranean vine-growing paradise, multiple cultures have ruled Sardinia.
Set in the middle of the Tyrrhenian Sea, the Phonoecians, Ancient Rome, and subsequently
the Byzantines, Arabs and Catalans have all staked a claim on the island at some point in history.
Along the way, these inhabitants transported many of their homeland’s prized vines
and today Sardinia’s varieties claim multiple origins. 

Vermentino, a prolific Mediterranean variety, is the island’s star white.
Vermentino grows in Languedoc region of France (Rolle) as well as Italy’s western and coastal regions,
Liguria (where it is called Pigato), Piedmont (where it is called Favorita)
and in Tuscany, where it goes by the name, Vermentino.
But many, including Emily, say the best Vermentino, grows in Sardinia's northeastern region of Gallura
where its vines struggle to dig roots deep down into north-facing slopes of granitic soils.
These Vermentino vines produce highly aromatic, full and concentrated whites of unparalleled balance.

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Pair Like a Pro

John Kerr of The Asheville School of Wine
for Capital at Play: Pair Like a Pro

A Quick Guide to Making it Work!

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Pinot Noir under $15

MWC Pinot Noir 2017, Victoria, Australia

Image result for mwc 2017 pinot noir victoria
Sourced from vineyards in the premium wine regions of Victoria, this medium bodied wine
has intensive aromas of plum, cherry and strawberry fruit with hints of spicy oak.
The fresh fruit momentum continues on the palate with vibrant plum and dark stone fruits
finishing with some firm acid, beautiful tannins and integrated oak.

Andy Hale, Director of The Asheville School of Wine, says he was prepared to dislike it. 
"I was ready to go full on Simon Cowell on it. 
I really did not think it was possible to get a decent Pinot Noir under $15.00.
By decent, I mean somewhat varietally correct without being secretly doped up with Petit Sirah.
MWC has
 good tart cherry cola and violets.  MWC has done well in blind tastings." 
(Lettie, you would love this one!)

Not widely distributed in the U.S. $17.99 at Vivino

*** $14.99 @MetroWines ***

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deKooning and rose'

‘Asheville’ (1948), by Willem de Kooning PHOTO: THE PHILLIPS COLLECTION/

"Asheville" by Willem de Kooning, 1948

Article by Harry Cooper, senior curator and head of modern art at National Gallery of Art in Washington.
He came across this pairing when he was also "smitten" with other works at The Phillips Collection
including"The Open Window by Pierre Bonnard
and "Entrance to the Public Gardens in Arles" by Vincent Van Gogh.
"Asheville" is:  White and tan preside over a mouthwatering assortment of sorbet colors:
pistachio, lemon raspberry, cotton candy. 

Perfect for Rose'
La Rame Bordeaux Rose 2018, $14.99

Image result for la rame rose 2018

The grapes are sourced from small parcels of younger vines (20 years of age as of 2011)
on the flanks of a hill that descends towards the Garonne River in the village of Sainte Croix du Mont.
A blend of Cabernet Sauvignon (80%) and Merlot (20%),
Aromas and palate of strawberries and raspberries, the red fruit mingles with prominent flavors
of grapefruit, white peach and yogurt. The fruit is balanced by bracing acidity
that accentuates the fruit but the tannin keeps everything in balance.

Image result for gina lollobrigida
(A young Gina Lollobrigida. She just turned 92!)
La Rame is French but don't forget "Aperitivi"

** An Italian Cocktail Party **

Italian Rose' Tasting Event sponsored by Ciao Asheville.
Closing in. Reserve now. Space is limited.
Call (828) 575-9525 or online: 

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Brumant Rose'

A Different Ros!
Brumant Cotes de Gascogne France
50% Tannat, 30% Syrah and 20% Merlot, $13.99

The Gascogne is an exceptional reserve of micro-terroirs offering a wide variety
of quality wines. This original and bright pink includes 3 main grape varieties that complement each other perfectly: Tannat that brings energy and liveliness,
Syrah with the mixture of fruity flavors of raspberry and currant and Merlot
which gives this wine its velvety satin side. 
Vineyards located at the top of the hills, each parcel being separated by a forest,
this in order to avoid contamination from one vineyard to another. Alain uses only natural spring water taken from his timbered hills, not polluted thanks to the ideal
and privileged environment of Gascony

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Garnacha Salvage del Mancayo

Garnacha Salvage del Mancayo

Image result for garnacha salvaje del moncayo

In the glass, intense and beautiful dark cherry color, with purple reflections.
Clean and quite bright. The nose offers an aromatic, varietally correct intensity.
Swirl! When it opens up, intense and fleshy notes of ripe red fruit are released, wrapped in mellow creamy aromas nuanced by some intense toasted hints and a subtle background of forest herbs.The palate presents lots of fruit. It shows a soft and silky mid palate with a balanced notes of fruit and wood. Hints of violets and mineral notes that turn into a mellow wine. Good acidity and polished tannins. Not widely distributed in the US. $13.99.

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