Before I review this wine I wanted to give a quick overview of the rather unique production processes used which many readers may not be overly familiar with.
This orange wine from Georgia is made using traditional Georgian techniques which involve the use of a Qvevris – an oval shaped amphorae (often buried) into which the grapes are loaded and left to ferment. The grape in this instance is the indigenous Rkatsiteli which is a white grape. Yes that’s right a white grape…but how come the wine is orange? It’s simple really – because the grapes are unpressed prior to fermentation (the opposite of most white wine production) the extended skin contact extracts colour from the skins. The longer the time on the skins prior to pressing so the deeper the colour.
So onto the wine itself which has an amber hue and on the nose gives aromas reminiscent of honey, nuts, spiced orange peel and apricots. Bone dry with decent acidity this full-ish bodied wine has a really textural waxy feel on the palate – with noticeable grippy, drying tannins (courtesy of the time spent on skins). Complex and rich the wine exhibits a tangible nutty savouriness alongside the honey, stone fruits and orange peel bitterness.
This is very much a food wine – whilst it won’t be too all tastes, orange wines are very much en vogue and this one, available at M&S for a tenner is definitely well worth a try. Let me know what you think.