Twenty-six years ago, when I found myself in Florence (Italy, not Arizona), unable to get a work permit, I enrolled myself in a language school in hopes of not only learning Italian, but sticking around until I could qualify for a permit. While the permit never came, school was fantastic, and among my fellow students were three people struggling to learn Italian. They had lived in Italy all their lives. As it happens, there’s a former chunk of Austria that got handed over to Italy in WW II negotiations, and the people there still speak German almost exclusively. They also make wine in a fairly Austrian style, but with Italian mountain fruit. I ran into Erste + Neue in a restaurant in Phoenix, and their Müller Thurgau made me all teary and warm inside. I liked this wine so much, I investigated who the importer was, and that importer, in turn, directed me to a small but mighty Arizona distributor, who in turn tasted us through all the Erste + Neue wines. That distributor is Vince Parrot, and he’ll be here this Sunday, July 26, at 3:30 with his wines in tow. We’ll make snacks to go with each one, and you’ll most likely fall in love with one or another- or all- of these wines, which is not heartbreaking at all, as they’re pretty affordable. The whites and the Rosé will take you through the remainder of the Tucson summer, and the reds will warm your heart through autumn and winter. The tasting is $30 plus tax and tip, and includes a discount on the wines. If you’d like to join us, please call us at 326-9363, as web and email reservations will not guarantee you a seat at the tasting.
Erste + Neue
2013 Erste + Neue Pinot Bianco, Sudtirol/Alto Adige $17.00
Bright straw yellow with greenish reflections. Very fine bouquet, soft notes of apple dominate. Very straightforward on the palate with an elegant freshness and minerality and fine structure.
2013 Erste + Neue Müller Thurgau, Sudtirol/Alto Adige $17.00
Greenish to straw yellow. Soft bouquet with hints of nuts and muscat. Very fresh wine, mild acidity and a pleasant fruitiness.
2013 Erste + Neue Sauvignon, Sudtirol/Alto Adige $17.00
Bright straw-yellow. Multi-layered bouquet of exotic fruits; the good acidity level gives this Sauvignon its vivacious freshness especially expressed in the harmonious aftertaste.
2013 Erste + Neue Rosé of Lagrein, Sudtirol/Alto Adige $17.00
Light ruby red in colour. Fresh bouquet, evocative of violets and strawberries. Lively on the palate, fine aftertaste with slightly tart foreground.
2013 Erste + Neue Grobnerhof (Vernatsch/Lagrein), Sudtirol/Alto Adige $17.00
Fine ruby red. Very fruity and elegant bouquet. Soft and round on the palate, with light notes of almond. Balanced harmony and typical sweet tones.
2013 Erste + Neue Lagrein, Sudtirol/Alto Adige $19.00
Dark garnet red. Powerful bouquet with pleasant cherry fruit. Palate and aftertaste full of smooth tannins with long-lasting hints of bitter chocolate.