Meadowdale Wines on the Isle of Wight is a fairly new English wine importer started by Swede Jan Lindfeldt. He specializes in wines produced with as little additives as possible. He says that he does not know what he should call his wines: “natural, raw, real, naked or pure … “. Instead he just calls them “fine wines, with loads of flavours and magic.” We have tried a few wines from his range.
Two of them come from Slovenia and one of the most famous producers there, Movia. Slovenia has a lot of interesting wines, not least the whites.
Movia is located in the region of Goriška Brda in western Slovenia, next to Italy. In fact, the dynamic owner Ales Kristancic has 15 hectares of which 7 are located in Italy (but all his wines are Slovenian). I visited Movia a couple of years ago and immediately liked the wines. The vineyards is grown biodynamically since 8 generations, according to Ales. Although, he says, perhaps his ancestors didn’t know it was biodynamic farming they were doing. Ales remember when he was a little boy and he had to sacrifice football on Saturdays because the moon was perfect for racking or bottling, and he had to help his father in the cellar instead.
From Meadowdale’s range, we have tried two exciting wines from Movia:
Movia Sivi Ambra Pinot Grigio 2011, Brda, Slovenia, £14.17
A very good wine, really bone dry. Beautiful colour, a little pink. Late harvested grapes have given a lot of character to this wine. It was aged a short time in oak. Fresh apricots on the nose and a hint of honey. The rich taste has concentration but also freshness. Delicious.
Movia Modri Pinot Noir 2008, Brda, Slovenia, £26.67
A rather unusual Pinot Noir, quite powerful in style. The grapes are harvested very late and give a concentrated aroma and flavour of dark, a bit jammy berries and a little spiciness. Some oak is present on the nose also, no wonder, the wine has been four years in French barrels. Just very little sulphur (below 35 mg / l) is added and only at bottling. Interesting indeed.
Wine from the volcanic island of Lipari, Tenuta di Castellaro
Jan Lindfeldt has also been looking for wines in Sicily, or rather on the Aeolian Islands north of Sicily. On these volcanic islands viticulture is important and on Lipari, one of the sunny and windswept islands, we find Tenuta di Castellaro. From Meadowdale’s range, we tried a white and a red wine from Castellaro.
Tenuta di Castellaro Bianco Pomice 2011, Terre Siciliane IGT, £ 14.58
The grapes are Malvasia delle Lipari and Carricante and a few local varieties. The aroma is floral and slightly spicy with a nice freshness and intensity of aromas. A delicious wine with complexity, quite full-bodied and round.
Tenuta di Castellaro Nero Ossidiana Rosso 2011, Terre Siciliane IGT, £ 16.25
A very drinkable wine with a juicy fruit, some spices and cherry fruit. Good length. Some bitterness at the end that gives character. Full-bodied, soft tannins. Fairly high acidity. Corinto and Nero d’Avola dominate the blend. The fermentation and skin contact is long, without temperature control.
Georgia, Jakeli Wines
Jakeli Wines is run by Malkhaz Jakeli, an organic pioneer in Georgia. He has 5 ½ hectares at the foot of the mountain range Tsiv Gombori. I have not been in Georgia but came in contact with the Georgian wines and food a couple of years ago when I helped a Georgian restaurant in Paris to compose their wine list. Both the wines and the food were a very positive experience.
Malkhaz Jakeli started his winery in 2001, near the village Khashmi. In his vineyards the vines intermingle with flowers and other crops in true organic spirit. Like many others in Georgia he uses kvevri, traditional amphoraes of clay, for his wines. He does not like oak barrels.
From Meadowdales range we have tasted these wines from Jakeli Wines:
Jakeli Khashmi Saperavi 2010, Georgia, £ 15.00
The grape is called Saperavi and is the most famous in Georgia. It is a grape that gives a lot of colour because not only the skins but also the juice is coloured. The grape is a teinturier, as they say in French. The wine is very powerful and full-bodied with a generous fruit. There is too much sweetness on the palate for my taste but also spiciness and a certain freshness.
Jakeli Khashmi Saperavi 2011, Georgien, £ 13.75
Same wine but another vintage. This wine is much drier and much better. A very deep coulour. Aromatic and fresh on the palate, full-bodied and a lot of tannins. A wine you absolutely have to pair with food!
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