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At Emiliana, the organic vineyards literally teem with life. Vineyards buzz with various bugs, bees, birds and native wildlife that together provide a natural and effective defense against common vine-destroying insects. Flowers and native plants thrive throughout the organic vineyards, providing another simple and cost-effective method of pest control and helping to counteract the detrimental effects of soil degradation. The use of chemicals is shunned, in favor of natural compounds, such as copper and nitrogen. Compost is sourced from spent grape skins and stems. Emiliana’s Natura range, which celebrated its U.S. debut in 2006, marks the cutting edge of an altogether new category of wines made from organically grown grapes – a collection of superbly made, affordably priced organic wines crafted expressly for everyday enjoyment, and accessible to all. The Natura collection features seven varietals, three whites and four reds, all produced from hand-picked, organic grapes, harvested from certified organic vineyards in the prime growing regions of Chile’s Central Vally.
The NATURA Carmenere 2011 is from Chile and is made from 85% Carmenere, 8% Syrah, 4% Cabernet Franc, and 3% Merlot.
The organically grown grapes are hand-picked in late April. After the crush, the must is transferred to temperature-con-trolled stainless steel tanks for a cold soak before undergoing alcoholic fermentation. The wine then undergoes malolactic fermentation which takes place naturally by controlling the temperature to complete the process. 20% of this wine is aged in French oak barrels for 6 months.
It is a dry, red wine that with a good balance between fruit and oak with a long, juicy finish.
Another great organic wine from Banfi is the NOVAS Pinot Noir 2011 and Sauvignon Blanc 2012
From Emiliana, Chile’s premier name for world-class wines made from organically grown grapes, the NOVAS range comprises a pioneering collection of limited-production wines, both white and red, produced exclusively from prime organically grown grapes. Meaning “new” in Latin, Novas is also the term used by astronomers referring to a bright, new star that suddenly appears in the heavens.
Novas wines are crafted by renowned winemaker Alvaro Espinoza, South America’s foremost expert in organic and biodynamic wines. Together with Emiliana’s lead winemaker, José Antonio Bravo, this quartet of wines has gained international acclaim. Superbly approachable upon release, the Novas collection will also reward a degree of aging, with the reds in particular developing increasing suppleness and complexity over time.
The Pinot Noir 2011 is from the Organic vineyards in the Casablanca Valley, Chile made from Organically grown grapes, 100% Pinot Noir. Grapes are hand harvested and sorted prior to a 7 day cold soak. The wine is aged for 8 months in French (20%) oak barrels.
It is bright ruby red with a bouquet with aromas of red fruits, especially cherries, which meld elegantly with earthy notes and toast from its time spent in oak.
Novas Pinot Noir is ideal with white meats, light sauces, full ﬂavored ﬁsh and shellﬁsh, cured ham and sushi.
Novas also offers the Sauvignon Blanc 2012 Emiliana from the Organic vineyards in San Antonio Valley, Chile.
The Organically grown grapes,100% Sauvignon Blanc are harvested by hand, the grapes are selected in March and undergo fermentation in stainless steel to preserve their bright fruit character. The wine is then aged in stainless steel with selected yeasts for 8 months producing clean, focused fruit aromas and ﬂavors.
It features herbal notes mixed with citrus and soft ﬂoral hints. It is medium bodied with grapefruit ﬂavors joined by a delicate acidity and a touch of minerality.
Novas Sauvignon Blanc pairs elegantly with white meat seasoned with lemon, fresh salads, fresh cheeses, shellﬁsh and white ﬁsh.
And to change the organic subject just a little, Banfi also offers a really great sweet variety - Sweet Bliss...and who doesn't love a sweet wine!??
For the Sweet Pink Wine, they blend Riesling, Pinot Gris (Washington) and Moscato (California) along with a touch of Barbera for color. All the grapes are picked early and the juice is fermented in stainless steel tanks. The fermentation is arrested at 8.5% alcohol and 8.5% residual sugar. A fair amount of residual carbonation from fermentation is left in the wine.
It is ideal with barbecued chicken, pork loin in a citrus glaze, berry pie or strawberry shortcake.
The Sweet Red Wine comes from several sources within the Columbia Valley. We blend 25% of Barbera from Piedmont to give the blend its signature "cherry" flavor. Some of the blend comes from bulk wines they buy that are rich in flavors regardless of the vintage. They age the blend on oak for a few months.
This wine is ideal with barbecued chicken, grilled burgers or pizza, even chocolate cake, cheesecake and cobblers.
Buy It: You can purchase the Natura Carmenere for $11, Novas Sauvignon Blanc for $14, Novas Pinot Noir for $17, and Sweet Bliss (all) for $9 at a local spirits retailers near you.
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