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 Fine Living: Undiscovered Wine Regions

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Male Number of posts : 528
Registration date : 2007-07-01

Fine Living: Undiscovered Wine Regions Empty
PostSubject: Fine Living: Undiscovered Wine Regions   Fine Living: Undiscovered Wine Regions Icon_minitimeFri Jul 27, 2007 3:59 pm

Fine Living: Undiscovered Wine Regions 14b_wine_dine
Undiscovered wine regions
When you think about the world’s best wine regions,
some obvious names come to mind, such as Alsace-Lorraine, the Loire
Valley and Tuscany. And there’s no doubt about the quality of the
elixirs from these wine regions, but to continually seek out these
regions does no justice to some of the lesser-known wine producers out there. Did you know, for example, that Romania is one of the largest wine-producing regions in the world?

There’s more to wine than what the best have to offer, and it’s worth
the time investment to consider the five lesser-known gems listed here.
They might elude you during a casual wine run, but they’re well worth
the extra effort.
1- Romania

Wine region: Murfatlar

You might not have known it, but in 2005 Romania was the 12th-largest
wine-producer by volume and the Murfatlar region, located on the Black
Sea, is the country’s finest.

Wine-making in Romania, as is
the case in many Eastern European countries, dates back centuries.
Quite a number of local grape varieties, such as Zghihara de Husi,
Cramposia de Dragasani and Galbena de Odobesti, dominated Romania’s
wine region until the 18th century, when they were replaced by more
common Western European grapes. Today, these Western grapes form the
backbone of Romania’s wine production.

One of Romania’s chief
advantages in wine production is its climate, which is perfect for
growing grapes: It’s fairly mild, with good sun exposure, rainfall and excellent soil.

Best varietals:
If you’re on the lookout for Romanian wines from the Murfatlar wine
region, seek out Murfatlar Vineyard's Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon,
Riesling, Pinot Gris and Chardonnay. All are excellent.

Romania’s Transylvania wine region is also a major wine exporter. For
obvious reasons, sales of these wines -- especially the Vampire
Vineyards stock -- tend to soar in October. The winery’s wines came to
be appreciated as more serious bottles in Europe and North America
after 1995. Be on the lookout for the Vampire Pinot Grigio, Merlot,
Pinot Noir, and Chardonnay.
2- Israel

Wine region: Galilee

Despite the relatively small volume of wine that Israel produces
annually (it was the 52nd-largest wine-producing country in 2005), it
produces some very good wines.

The Galilee area, located in
the North District of Israel, is Israel’s best wine-producing region,
characterized by high altitudes, cool breezes and very good,
well-drained soil.

Galilee’s main wine-producing subregion and
main wine producer is the Golan Heights Winery, which has become the
benchmark for Israel’s wine industry. Golan is the only winery in the
world to have won the Grand Prix d’Honneur at Vinexpo for three years
in a row, and it is credited with having revolutionized the Israeli
wine-making industry through the introduction of modern techniques and

Best varietals: Golan Heights Winery features three top labels: Yarden, Gamla and Golan.

The Yarden Cabernet Sauvignon 2001 comes especially highly recommended.
It’s full-bodied, and has a good balance of tannins and fruits with
notes of plum, wild berry and currant.
3- Cyprus

Wine region: Commandaria

isn’t among the largest wine producers in the world (it ranked 37th in
wine production by volume in 2005), but wine from the Commandaria
region has been considered to be among the world’s best since the 12th

During his crusades, King Richard the Lionheart of
England was said to have tasted the Commandaria wine and called it “the
wine of kings and the King of wines.”
In fact, production of this
Cypriot wine is said to date back to the time of the ancient Greeks and
its ancestor wines can be traced back to 800 B.C. It is the world’s
oldest-named wine still in production today.
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Male Number of posts : 528
Registration date : 2007-07-01

Fine Living: Undiscovered Wine Regions Empty
PostSubject: Re: Fine Living: Undiscovered Wine Regions   Fine Living: Undiscovered Wine Regions Icon_minitimeFri Jul 27, 2007 4:00 pm

Today’s Commandaria wine
is made with two types of grapes, Xynisteri and Mavro, which are
indigenous to Cyprus. These grapes remain on the vine until they are
overripe, which gives the sugar a chance to reach high levels.
Afterward, the grapes are left in the sun, where their flavor
concentrates and the juice is extracted. The result is a highly
complex, rich wine that is similar in some respects to an ice wine or a dessert wine.

By law, Commandaria must be produced in specific Cyprus regions and it
holds a “protected designation of origin” that is recognized by the
European Union, the U.S. and Canada.

Best varietals: Seek out the Commandaria winery for the best Commandaria wines in Cyprus.
4- India

Wine region: Nashik

The idea of a wine capital in India doesn’t exactly conjure up images
of traditional production methods or quality vintages, but don’t be too
quick to dismiss India’s Nashik region. Nashik takes full advantage of
a relatively short growing season to produce some fine undiscovered

India's largest wine-producing region is located in the
Maharashtra state, 120 miles east of Mumbai. The region is also very
scenic, featuring temples, lakes and waterfalls. The state government
has recently begun aggressively promoting wine development in the
region, so expect to hear more about Nashik in the near future.

Best varietals: Expect to find some top-quality Shiraz, Zinfandel and Sauvignon Blancs coming out of Nashik.

The Sula winery was the first in the region and remains one of the
best. It produces a magical Chenin Blanc with a hint of residual sugar
that pairs well with hot Indian curries. Sula’s Sauvignon Blanc is also
impressive with a bright acidity and nice citrus flavors.
5- New York

Wine region: Long Island

New Yorkers
have known for years that their backyard is home to one of the best
undiscovered wine regions in the world, and that secret is slowly
starting to leak out.
Long Island’s East End is characterized by a
maritime climate that is fairly moderate by American Northeast
standards. The grapes, therefore, generally tend to survive better
there than they do in other parts of the state.

The results of
this region are Long Island wines that are taking away top reviews,
especially for the red Bordeaux varietals like Merlot and Cabernet

Best varietals:
The Hamptons’ Wolffer Estate
Selection Merlot 2002 is known as one of the best. It’s a medium- to
full-bodied wine, with a dark claret color and subtle aromas of
tobacco, cedar, blackberry, and vanilla and notes of lush fruit such as
dates and plums.
underground wines

These five little-known
wine-producing regions prove that the best wines need not come from
France and Italy. Regions like Long Island and Galilee are putting out
bottles that are standing tall with the best that the old guard has to
offer and, in some cases, they’ve actually surpassed the expectations
of the best producers.
The lesson here is that it pays to keep your
eyes open and to be informed about some excellent but lesser-known wine
producing regions out there. Your palate will thank you.

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