Niklas Lagrein 2009
Other Red Wine from Trentino-Alto Adige, Italy
Dark ruby color, velvety fruit notes of blackberry and the violet. Its taste is medium strong with a velvety tannin structure.
Lagrein is an indigenous grape variety that is used to make a wide range of different wine styles, from rosé ('kretzer') to huge, black-purple reserve wines. Dieter Soelva's example is in the middle, a delicious plummy savory drink with a hint of tannin on the finish and no noticeable oak (it does spend some time in larger neutral wood).
Wine Spectator - "Ripe damson preserves and black currant notes mix with hints of creamy licorice snap, smoke, graphite and espresso in this somewhat burly red. Fresh and lively, with a beefy note on the finish. Best from 2012 through 2017. 250 cases imported. "
Weingut Niklas Winery
Niklas produces the native Pinot Bianco (oh so much more interesting than Pinot Grigio!); a certain richness with the acidity; lots of apple without the skin (more of a dilineated than edgy tartness).
And -- let's it be proclained -- that Pinot Bianco is one serious grape in this area. We've tasted back vintages and it ages quite well. Dieter has banked on Pinot Bianco for years; I hope you will too, at least once.
For something really different, try the Riesling-like, Kerner, a cross of the Schiava and Riesling grape. Apricot and peach make a delicate, refined nose. The Sauvignon here is grown from planting from one of the more famous Sauvignon producers in Styria; minerally and green pepper but also fruit that has tropical notes. View all Weingut Niklas Wines
About Trentino-Alto AdigeView a map of Trentino-Alto Adige wineries (tren-TEE-noe ahl-toe ah-DEE-jay)
Notable FactsReds are likely to be Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc, along with a few local varieties, most notably Schiaval. The white grapes are Pinot Bianco, Pinot Grigio, Traminer and Chardonnay. Chardonnay is the most-planted and most revered, while Traminer hails from Austria and has an amazingly light body, but is also intensely floral and delicious. Pinot Bianco and Pinot Grigio are the international players that make lively whites of good value. The sweet spot of Trentino Alto-Adige is Vino Santo- a wine not to be confused with Tuscany's Vin Santo. Vino Santo (which means holy wine) is a sweet wine of the area made from dried grapes. Not found as much as Vin Santo, but still a treat.
A little ditty about Italy...This country has about as many wines as its had governments. With 20 different regions, hundreds of DOCs and even more indigenous varieties, the amount of wine made in Italy is mind-boggling. Most of the juice, however, remains in the country for thirsty Italians. Wine is food in Italy and its rare that a meal is consumed without a glass of vino. That said, it's not common to find many folks drinking wine without food either. In turn, it's a match, and a mighty good one at that. In fact, it's safe to say that Italian wine is a foodie wine – one that goes on the table for a myraid of meals.
For regions, the most popular are Tuscany (home of Chianti), Piedmont and the Tre-Venezie, which includes Veneto, Trentino Alto-Adige and Friuli. Other communes of note are in Southern Italy, and a few good wines are made elsewhere in the country. The islands of Sardinia and Sicily are members of the Italian winemaking community as well.
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Fruity
- Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
- Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
- Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
- Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.