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Flat front label of wine
Flat front label of wine

Horton Mourvedre 1996

Mourvedre from Virginia
    0% ABV
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    Winemaker Notes

    Intensely spicy wine with blackberry aromas and smokey flavor components.

    Critical Acclaim

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    Horton

    Horton Vineyards

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    Virginia

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    Diversity of landscape, terrain and climate make Virginia one of the most exciting American wine producing states today. Its viticultural history reaches as far back as 1607 when early settlers made the first wine from indigenous American grapes.

    Thomas Jefferson imported the first French varieties to Virginia and grew the Vitis vinifera species (the European species), though not with great success.

    Today, however, increased knowledge and optimal vineyard management techniques bring prosperity with a great number of diverse varieties. Virginia’s varied landscape has created seven distinct AVAs (American Viticultural Areas).

    Encouraged by an enthusiastic state government, fine wine production in Virginia continues to flourish. The state achieves success with a variety of wine types and styles including sparkling wines, Bordeaux Blends, Nebbiolo, Chardonnay, Viognier and less common whites like Petit Manseng and Vermentino.

    Mourvedre

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    Never lacking in color, tannin, or bold, mouth-filling texture, Mourvèdre is most commonly deployed to provide substance in blends with Grenache and Syrah/Shiraz. Despite being better known by its French name, Mourvèdre is actually of Spanish provenance, originally known as Monastrell. In Spain, it is one of the most commonly planted red grapes, serving as the principal variety in regions such as Alicante, Jumilla, and Yecla. It truly thrives, however, in Provence’s Bandol region, where it produces singular red and rosé wines along with Grenache and [Cinsault]. It is also of great importance in the Southern Rhône alongside Grenache and Syrah—and in California and Australia, where those blends are frequently mimicked.

    In the Glass

    Mourvèdre/Monastrell is responsible for robust, heady wines with dark berry fruit and a somewhat gamey quality. At its finest, it takes on brambly red and black fruit flavors and hints of herbs, leather, dark chocolate, and licorice. It can be prohibitively tannic in its youth, but well-aged examples can show an impressive degree of elegance and an attractive perfume. In blends with Grenache and Syrah, Mourvèdre provides fleshy texture, tannic structure, and deep color.

    Perfect Pairings

    This earthy Mediterranean variety loves rustic food—think cassoulet, wild boar ragu, or smoky ribs. Mourvèdre’s tannins are bold but not bitter, lending the wine the weight and texture it needs to pair with such hearty fare.

    Sommelier Secret

    Mourvèdre used to have significant plantings in California, but it was unfashionable and its presence was quickly declining in the late 20th century. In the 1980s, a group of California winemakers inspired by the wines of the Rhône Valley (aptly named the Rhône Rangers) brought the variety back into the spotlight. Plantings have since increased and “GSM” blends are now a highly-regarded specialty of the Central Coast.

    NDV118194_1996 Item# 14446