St. Patrick’s Day wines

Celebrating St. Patrick’s Day? I am a little bored reading about Irish-related wines (some with highly dubious Irish connections) to drink on our national holiday. Instead two Italian wines that would go down nicely with any feast or celebration you may be planning.


Soave Gregoris 2014 Antonio Fattori

A refreshing crisp dry Soave with lovely plump pear fruits on the mid-palate. Great on its own, with lighter fish and seafood dishes, or, I reckon, with salads.

Available from On the Grapevine, Dalkey; Cabot & Co., Westport.

Soave covers all sorts of wines, from watery and flavourless to some of Italy’s greatest dry whites. This wine is probably somewhere in the middle; a good well-made wine with pleasant fruits. Antonio Fattori, who attended the wine weekend in Knockranny House Hotel a few weeks back, is a thoughtful winemaker. He also makes a pretty decent Pinot Grigio, and a few top-notch single vineyard Soaves. Sadly these are not available in Ireland for the moment.


Bucerchiale 2011, Chianti Rufina Riserva Selvapiana

A wonderfully expressive nose, a full, intense palate of firm dark cherry fruits and a long dry finish. The quality of the fruit here is excellent. Keep for a decade or decant and drink now with red meats.

Available from 64 Wine, Glasthule; Blackrock Cellars; Sweeney’s, Glasnevin; Green Man Wines, Terenure; Jus de Vine, Portmarnock; Michael’s, Mount Merrion; Mitchell & Son, CHQ and Glasthule; Corkscrew, Dublin 2;

Going a bit upmarket here, but it is our national day. I had the pleasure of visiting Selvapiana last week as part of a recent trip to Tuscany. The tasting was in a lovely slightly decrepit old house, with very old paintings, furniture and carpets. The estate has been in the family of Fransesco Giuntini since 1827 -he is related to the Antinoris and most of the other Tuscan nobility. Having no children, he adopted the son and daughter of the estate manager many years ago. They now run Selvapiana in an exemplary manner. The basic Chianti Rufina is usually fresh and delicious, and the Riserva Bucerchiale, from a single vineyard, one of the best-value top wines of Tuscany.

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