Sella and Mosca, Cannonau di Sardegna Riserva 2015 (about $15)

Italian Wine for march, 2019

Cannonau is the most widely-planted variety on the island of Sardegna (Sardinia). The sun-loving, hardy Cannonau is ideally suited to the hot, dry Mediterranean climate of this island located off mainland Italy’s southwestern coast.

While it’s not entirely clear, the current thinking is that the variety originated in Sardinia and subsequently spread to Spain, where it is called Garnacha, and France and eventually to the U.S., Australia and other parts of the world where it generally is known as Grenache.

It produces deeply-colored, aromatic and flavorful wines. A wood-aged Cannonau can be powerful and long-lived with dark fruit flavors that make it an ideal food companion to Sardinia’s rich pasta and traditional roast pork and lamb dishes.

Founded in 1890 by two professional colleagues from northern Italy, the Sella and Mosca winery is today one of Italy’s - and Europe’s - largest wine estates. With approximately 1,600 acres under vine – and still growing – the winery produces an extensive portfolio of still, sparkling and sweet wines made primarily of native varieties such as Cannonau, Carignano, Torbato and Vermentino and also a few international favorites such as Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc. All wines are produced from estate-grown grapes.

The estate’s Cannonau di Sardegna Riserva is made entirely of Cannonau grapes harvested from selected 2015 Cannonau de Sardegna from the Sella and Mosca winery in Sardiniaparcels of the estate’s extensive vineyard holdings. The grapes are vinified in stainless steel tanks for two weeks and then aged for 2 years which includes 6 months spent in oak barrels.

Sella and Mosca’s 2015 Cannonau di Sardegna Riserva is a wine that with its richness and depth of dark fruit flavors exuberantly shouts “made in Sardinia!” You get full-on Cannonau character in its generous intensity and round, mouth-filling flavors. It is full-bodied with good acidity and rich, ripe, plummy flavors backed by soft tannins that are more sweet than bitter. It is a delicious but unpretentious wine with a certain earthiness evocative of its warm Mediterranean heritage.

This wine is best when paired with equally hearty, flavorful foods such as porcini mushroom-based dishes and lamb, game and red meats served any-which way. The Cannonau Riserva also goes well with pâté and hard, aged cheeses.

This wood-aged Cannonau Riserva will age gracefully for another decade or more. It’s a lot of delicious wine for a relatively modest price.


©Richard Marcis
March 9, 2019

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