June Sweet Club Iowa

 

Sweet Wine Clubmoscato-bottleRuffino
Moscato d’Asti DOCG
Piedmont, Italy

NECTAR WINE STYLE

This sweet wine from the Piedmont region of northwest Italy has an aromatic bouquet and low alcohol content, making it an incredibly pleasant wine to drink. It is bright straw yellow in color. The nose is very fragrant and characteristic of the Moscato varietal. It showcases notes of acacia, elderberry, wisteria and citrus, followed by defined notes of peach, orange blossom and sage. On the palate, the wine delivers a pleasantly sweet taste, with flavors or sage and white stone fruit. Its frizzante wine style and balanced acidity make this wine a versatile companion for lunch, dinner, dessert, or simply on its own.

Analysis: 6% alcohol / volume
Varietal: 100% White Moscato
Harvest: Mid-September
Serving Temperature: 46°F to 50°F
Serving Glass: Ideally served in a high-stemmed, tulip-shaped glass, allowing the wine to touch the sip of the tongue first, where sweetness is first perceived
Pairing: Moscato d’Asti is a very versatile food companion. It pairs exceptionally well with any type of dessert; or pair with fresh bread, charcuterie, figs, melon or spicy foods.

WineStyles Wine and Cheese Pairing: Sweet wines from our ‘Nectar’ section pair well with an herbal cheese. Learn more about our wine and cheese pairings here.

HARVEST AND PRODUCTION: 
“We source the grapes for this wine from the Roero, Monferrato and Langhe regions in southern Piedmont. The first stage of Moscato production is a traditional white wine process. The second stage uses the Charmat method in which the wine undergoes a secondary fermentation in tanks and is bottled under pressure to produce light, gently sparkling bubbles and to preserve the fresh, fruit characteristics of the Moscato Bianco grapes.” – Ruffino

ABOUT RUFFINO:
Ruffino is a large wine company based in Tuscany, producing wines from several wine regions in Central and Northern Italy, including Piedmont. The winery was established in 1877 when cousins Ilario and Leopoldo Ruffino took on their passion for winemaking by establishing their first winery. Today, more than 140 years later, Ruffino continues to showcase the heritage of these true Italian wines. Learn more about their history here.


MNDASTINVTS-1000815Mondoro
Asti
Piedmont, Italy

NECTAR WINE STYLE

Produced entirely from white muscat (moscato) grapes grown in the strictly delineated Asti region of northern Italy, the wine has a delicately sweet character which makes it delightful and refreshing. It is pale yellow in color with fast moving bubbles. On the nose, there is a distinctive and intense aroma of honey and ripe peach. On the palate, it is an intensely sweet and fruity sparkling wine with hints of orange and candied pears.

Analysis: 7% alcohol / volume
Varietal: 100% Moscato
Country: Italy
Region: Piedmont

Appellation: Asti DOCG
Vineyards: Grapes sourced from Canelli, Santo Stefano Belbo and Calosso

Pairing:
Enjoy as an aperitif or with fruit-based desserts.

WineStyles Wine and Cheese Pairing: Sweet wines from our ‘Nectar’ section pair well with an herbal cheese. Learn more about our wine and cheese pairings here.

© Photo by Palm Bay International

© Photo by Palm Bay International

HARVEST AND PRODUCTION:
The sparkling wine is created with the Asti Method. Grapes are crushed and the juice is stored at a low temperature until it is needed. When the wine is ready to be made, the grape must is warmed and fermentation takes place in pressurized tanks. Carbon dioxide is allowed to escape until the alcohol level reaches 6% and at this point, the Carbon dioxide is retained – which creates the bubbles. The fermentation continues until the alcohol has reached 7-7.5% alcohol by volume and the pressure is close to 5 atmospheres. The fermentation is stopped by chill filtration and the wine is bottled for immediate release.” – Mondoro


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February Sweet Club

saracco-moscato-enSweet Wine ClubPaolo Saracco
Moscato d’Asti
Castiglione Tinella, Piedmont, Italy

NECTAR WINE STYLE

Moscato d’Asti is an indigenous aromatic wine characterized by orange, peach and lime notes, with a sweet taste rich in minerals. In color, it is straw yellow with greenish hues, fine perlage, and a slow fermentation index. On the nose it has intense orange blossom, peach and thyme flavors. The taste is intense, elegant, and lingering. The sweet sensations are well balanced with a pleasant acidity with fruity aromas — typical of Muscat grapes.

Food Pairing Recommendations: Ideal with pastries, cakes, fruit tarts, ice cream, biscuits. Also delicious with cheeses such as gorgonzola and in cocktails.

WineStyles’ Wine and Cheese Pairing: Sweet wines from our ‘Nectar’ section pair well with an herbal cheese, such as a gorgonzola. Learn more about our wine and cheese pairings here.

Varietal: Moscato Bianco Canelli
Vineyards: Located in Castiglione Tinella, Santo Stefano Belbo, Castagnole Lanze, Colosso
Vinification:
After harvesting, the bunches are gently pressed to extract the most flavorful juice from the outermost part of the grapes. The must is kept in stainless steel containers at -3°C, where it can be kept for months. When there is market demand, it is then transferred into autoclaves for temperature-controlled fermentation, micro-filtered for purity and then bottled to keep the freshness and flavors intact.

Saracco Vineyards

© Photo by Saracco Winery

VINEYARDS:
A real winemaker knows how to identify plots of land in the best areas. Over the years the Paolo Saracco winery has bought vineyards in the areas around Castiglione Tinella, Santo Stefano Belbo, Castagnole Lanze and Calosso. On their 50 hectares, grapes are grown sustainably in harmony with nature and with attention to changes in the climate throughout the year. Moscato grapes are full of aroma: all processing steps in the winery are done to maintain and preserve their flavors.

ABOUT THE WINERY:
In the heart of the Moscato d’Asti, the Saracco family has produced this aromatic wine in this area since the early 1900s and cultivated their own vineyards, which is an important part of the process, creating a link with the ideal terrain for growing Moscato grapes. With the support of their founder Luigi Saracco, a family of winemakers put their aromatic Moscato wine on the market, selling wine in bulk in the spring to companies producing Vermouth. Today, the passion and professionalism shown in previous decades are continued by Paolo Saracco, Giovanni’s son and current owner, who decided to start bottling Moscato after studying oenology. And so, the ‘Paolo Saracco’ label was born. This idea has allowed wine lovers in Italy and across the globe to discover a hugely aromatic, balanced Moscato d’Asti. To learn more about the Saracco Winery, click here.


Rosso Dolce BottleSonoroso
Rosso Dolce
Trentino, Italy

NECTAR WINE STYLE

The Rosso Dolce (Sweet Red Wine) is brilliant ruby red in color. On the nose, delicate scents of plum and violet compliment the aromas of red fruits and sweet spice. The taste is fresh vibrant and slightly frizzante, with notes of blackberry and cherry for a sensuous taste. It finishes with a touch of sweetness.

Food Pairing Recommendations:
Pleasantly refreshing and food-friendly; pairs well with flavorful dishes and spicy cuisine, or even your favorite dessert! Serve chilled.

WineStyles’ Wine and Cheese Pairing: Sweet wines from our ‘Nectar’ section pair well with an herbal cheese, such as a gorgonzola. Learn more about our wine and cheese pairings here.

Analysis: 7% alcohol / volume
Varietals: Teroldego, Marzemino, Merlot
Appellation: Trevenezie IGT
Residual Sugar: 100 g/I
TA: 5.30 g/l
Vinification: Each varietal is manually harvested at the perfect ripeness to preserve aromas and freshness. Following de-stemming, the juice is kept in contact with the grape skin for several days at low temperatures (cold maceration) to extract the fruit’s aroma and color. Then a partial fermentation is done at low temperature to preserve the natural sweetness, the fruity character and the fizzy style.

ABOUT THE WINERY:
Sonoroso is an irresistible, delicately sweet line of wines from Northern Italy. It makes a wonderful aperitif and is also incredibly food-friendly with a variety of dishes. Learn more here.

Sonoroso

© Photo by Sonoroso Wine

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November Sweet Club

Sweet Wine ClubIl MoscatoMionetto
Il Moscato
Veneto, Italy

BUBBLY WINE STYLE

Founded in 1887 by Francesco Mionetto in the small village of Valdobbiadene, Mionetto has an established reputation for quality, tradition and innovation. In the heart of the Prosecco region, Mionetto produces exceptional wines with consistent national and international acclaim.

Mionetto’s Il Moscato has a bright, golden, straw yellow color; persistent nose reminiscent of aromatic grapes; elegant, sweet, delicate palate. Overflowing with stone fruit aromas such as peach and apricot, with slight floral overtones On the palate, it tastes of bright juicy fruit with a refreshing zing from the delicate bubbles. The persistent, fine bubbles enhance the taste experience.

Food Pairing Recommendations: Ideal with fruit, pastries and tarts.

WineStyles’ Wine and Cheese Pairing: Sweet wines from our ‘Bubbly’ section pair well with soft or pungent cheeses, such as a Brie and Camembert. Learn more about our wine and cheese pairings here.

Analysis:
7% alcohol / volume
Varietal: Moscato
Residual Sugar: 70 g/l
Acidity: 6 g/l
Winemaker: Francesco Mionetto

ABOUT THE WINERY:
In 1887, master winemaker Francesco Mionetto opened the winery in Valdobbiadene, in the heart of the Prosecco area, just north of Venice. His love and passion for the region and its wines are still to this day a fundamental value for this unique winery. Mionetto has become a flagship for the area and a shining example of Prosecco production on the international scene.

From the very beginning, Mionetto has always been a modern and innovative winery able to anticipate trends, while maintaining a strong bond to the traditions of its homeland, a feature which still today sets it apart from other sparkling wine producers.

PRODUCTION:
In 1982, the Mionetto family introduced autoclave fermentation by switching to the Charmat method, which allows for better preservation of the flavors and aromas of Prosecco and other sweet wines. After an initial soft pressing and the temperature-controlled first fermentation that takes place at the facilities of their selected producers, using the Charmat method, the second fermentation takes place in autoclaves instead of individual bottles. This additional temperature-controlled fermentation is recommended in order to help maintain the freshness and aroma of the grape in the bottling phase.

The winemaker’s job is not only to produce a high quality sparkling wine, but to maintain the relationships with local farmers who provide the grapes. Mionetto is fortunate to have relationships with vineyard owners that date back for generations. The strength and longevity of these relationships are what greatly affect the quality and quantity of grapes provided to a winery. 

THE TERRITORY:
Mionetto has become a flagship for the area and a shining example of Prosecco and Moscato production on the international scene. The beauty of the hills takes in many physical forms. While some slopes roll gently towards the valley, others are much steeper. For protection from the prevailing cold alpine winds and icy rains from the North, vines are on Southern slopes. Southeast slopes are best; they face the morning sun, benefiting from the early sunlight and a morning jolt of CO2, needed for sugar production. The climate is generally temperate: the area is protected by the Alps to the North and warmed by the winds of the Adriatic Sea to the East, mitigating the temperature in summer and producing rainfall that favors the proper growth of vines. In late summer, the area is characterized by great temperature variations between day and night, enabling the growth of aromatic substances in the grapes as they mature. Learn more here.

Croft Fine Tawny PortCroft
Fine Tawny Port

Douro Valley, Portugal

NECTAR WINE STYLE

Vivid tawny-red color. Nose of ripe mellow fruit with aromas of figs and prunes set off by an attractive woody and spicy character. Smooth and round on the palate, full of rich jammy flavors.

Food Pairing Recommendations:
Ports are very versatile and can be used for cooking sauces to roasted beef or lamb; or added in desserts for dimension and silkiness.  When simply drinking this port, keep it for desserts, or pair with more savory dishes such as Pâtés, Blue Cheeses, or Walnuts. Check out Croft’s recommended recipes and pairings here.

WineStyles’ Wine and Cheese Pairing:
Sweet wines from our ‘Nectar’ section pair well with strong cheeses, such as a Stilton and other Blue cheeses. Learn more about our wine and cheese pairings here.


Analysis: 20% alcohol / volume
Varietal: Blend
Residual Sugar: 100.6 g/l
Acidity: 3.37 g/l

Production:
The Fine Tawny is drawn from a reserve of fine wood ports which have been aged for up to three years in seasoned oak casks, each holding about 650 liters of wine. The individual wines are then blended to guarantee consistency of quality and house style. Croft Fine Tawny is bottled for immediate drinking.


ABOUT THE WINERY:
Croft is one of the most distinguished of all Port houses. Founded in 1588, it is the oldest firm still active today as a Port wine producer. The company is renowned above all for its Vintage Ports as well as for its range of wood aged reserves and tawnies, time-honored styles refined by skill and experience passed down the generations.

As important as its history, traditions and vineyards, is the fact that Croft remains a family company, dedicated to the production of the finest Ports of all styles, from full bodied reserve Ports to the iconic Croft Vintage Ports prized by the connoisseur and collector.

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August Sweet Club: Iowa

Sweet Wine ClubStella Rosa BlueberryStella Rosa®️ Wines
Blueberry
Piedmont, Italy

NECTAR WINE STYLE

Stella Rosa Blueberry is their winery’s newest flavor, and is a proprietary blend of several red grape varietals. The wine is combined with flavors of natural blueberry distillates & purées, making it undeniably irresistible. Its sweet and succulent blueberry taste will elevate your mood and your wine-tasting expectations.

Region: Piedmont, Italy
Analysis: 5% alcohol / volume

Food Pairing Recommendations: This flavor pairs well with fresh fruits, BBQ chicken, charcuterie, cheesecake, and cinnamon roll coffee cake.

Blueberry Frosé

Photo credit: Stella Rosa Wines

BLUEBERRY FROSÉ
Cool off this summer with a refreshing frosé! Check out this fun way to switch up Stella Rosa Blueberry Wine.

INGREDIENTS:

1 bottle Stella Rosa Blueberry
2 1/3 cups frozen blueberries, divided
¼ cup lemon juice
2 oz. vodka
fresh blueberries (for garnish)

INSTRUCTIONS:

1.Pour wine into ice cube trays and freeze for 6 to 8 hours until almost frozen solid Note: wine will not freeze completely
2. In a blender, pulse together wine ice cubes, vodka, 2 cups frozen blueberries, and lemon juice.
3. Divide frosé among 4 glasses. Garnish with a handful of fresh blueberries and enjoy!
© Recipe courtesy of Stella Rosa Wines

Stella Rosa WatermelonStella Rosa®️ Wines
Watermelon
Piedmont, Italy

NECTAR WINE STYLE

Stella Rosa Watermelon is a new, and exclusive, addition to the winery’s semi-sparkling collection. Featuring a proprietary blend of several white grape varietals, including White Moscato (an indigenous grape variety from Piedmont, Italy), and a touch of Barbera for color. Its crisp, refreshing taste showcases the natural flavors of watermelon, created using a distillation process of Italian fruits grown in southern Italy. The semi-dry character is a perfect compliment to Brunch and light appetizers.

Region: Piedmont, Italy
Analysis: 5.5% alcohol /volume

Food Pairing Recommendations: This flavor pairs wonderfully with light salads, such as Greek or Caesar, as well as salty appetizers like Edamame or Jalapeño poppers. For dessert, you can pair it with coconut cream pie!

Stella Rosa Watermelon

Photo credit: Stella Rosa Wines

SPICY STELLA ROSA RITA

A little sweet, a little spicy! Try this fun cocktail at home with this month’s Stella Rosa Watermelon Wine.

INGREDIENTS

For Drink:
5 oz. Stella Rosa Watermelon, chilled
1½ oz. Jose Cuervo Tequila Blanco
¾ oz. lime juice
2 oz. watermelon juice
1 jalapeño, sliced
For Rim:
1 tbsp. Kosher salt
1 tbsp. chili powder
Lime wedges

INSTRUCTIONS

1. Place jalapeño slices in a jar with tequila and let sit for 15 minutes for the spice to infuse the tequila.
2. Remove the jalapeño slices & set aside.
3. Mix salt and chili powder together on a separate plate. Smear the rim of the glass with a lime wedge then dip it into the salt-chili powder mixture to coat the rim.
4. Add a handful of ice to the glass.
5. In a cocktail shaker, add the juices & infused tequila; shake vigorously.
6. Strain the mixture into the glass.
7. Top off with Stella Rosa Watermelon, garnish with a Watermelon slice, and enjoy!
© Recipe courtesy of Stella Rosa Wines

Stella RosaWINEMAKING:
The grapes are harvested, pressed, centrifuged, and then held as a cold juice at 28 degrees Fahrenheit. The juice is fermented at various intervals throughout the year, which allows the wine to remain fresh and delicate throughout the entire fermenting process. The Stella Rosa family uses this technique to capture the fresh flavors of natural blueberry distillates & purées for their Blueberry wine, and an off-dry Rosé, busting with fresh flavors for their Watermelon wine. Both Stella Rosa Blueberry and Watermelon contain natural carbonation. The juice is fermented in Charmat-style, pressurized tanks, and as the alcohol is created, so is the carbonation. Once the desired sweetness is achieved, the wine is centrifuged and bottled. The alcohol level stays at approximately 5% and contains 6-10% residual sugar. Its natural acidity and low pH strike the perfect balance with the wine’s natural sweetness. 

ABOUT STELLA ROSA:
It all started in 1917, when the Riboli family founded Los Angeles’ historic San Antonio Winery. Back then, Los Angeles was the prime location for wine growing in all of California. For some time, the wine industry reigned as one of Southern California’s most economically significant and popular industries of that time. After surviving Prohibition and about a century later, the Riboli family has continued its artisan winemaking tradition through four generations. From within the tasting rooms of San Antonio Winery, customers repeatedly requested a sweeter, light, refreshing wine. The Riboli family took this unique opportunity to create a new semi-sweet, semi-sparkling wine style, which today, they are a leader of. And so, Stella Rosa was born.

our-story-mapMADE AND IMPORTED FROM ITALY:
To create the Stella Rosa wines, their family chose the region of Asti, a province in Piedmont, Italy, as the source for its aromatic grapes. The area of Asti has particular significance to the Riboli family, as it is the birthplace of their family matriarch, Maddalena Riboli. Their first Stella Rosa wine was Moscato D’Asti, which has become a flagship of this line. Soon after, Stella Rosa Rosso was created – the brand’s first semi-sweet, semi-sparkling red wine blend, and first wine of its kind to be brought to America from Asti. The rapid phenomenal successes of these two wines began the lineage of Stella Rosa, which now boasts over 20 distinctive flavors.

WineStyles’ Wine and Cheese Pairing: Sweet wines from our ‘Nectar’ section pair well with strong cheeses, such as a blue cheese. Learn more about our wine and cheese pairings here.

Love the Sweet life?
“Wine” not try our Sweet Club! 

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May Sweet Club: Iowa

Tropical Passion Fruit MoscatoSweet Wine ClubTropical Moscato
Passion Fruit
Italy

The grapes were cultivated via the classic Guyot method and state-of-the-art technology is employed during the winemaking process. After pressing, the must undergoes a short fermentation, is rapidly chilled to a temperature just above freezing to stop the yeast activity and racked off the sediment. Just prior to bottling, the secondary fermentation takes place and the tropical fruit is added and blended.  This winemaking process results in a fresh, bright and aromatic Moscato.

The Tropical Moscato is straw yellow in color. It is bright and refreshing with fine structure. The aromas of tropical fruit follow through to the palate for a harmonious finish. In every bottle of Tropical Passion Fruit Moscato, there are two whole passion fruits inside.  This wine is delightful as an aperitif or at the end of the meal, with fruit, aged cheeses and desserts. 

Appellation: Italy
Varietal: 95% Moscato, 5% Natural Tropical Pulp
Analysis: 5.5% alcohol / volume
Residual Sugar: 120g/l
Total Acidity: 5.5 g/l
Critical Acclaim: 93pts San Francisco International Wine Competition

 

Tropical Grapefruit MoscatoTropical Moscato
Grapefruit

Italy

The Moscato grapes for this wine come from vineyards located in Stefano Belbo villages, at 200 to 300 ft. above sea level.  Vinification is via autoclave, according to the Charmat Method, until it reaches 5.0% alchohol.  Next, the wine undergoes cold fermentation and aging in stainless steel vats for one month, after which time it is blended with pink grapefruit juice and natural aroma, and bottled.

This Moscato comes from a grape variety that has probably the highest level of complex aromas of any Piedmont grape.  The wine has the distinctive Moscato aroma and flavor, with added complexity from the concentrated grapefruit juice.  This wine is a perfect accompaniment to fruits, aged cheeses or hazelnut cake, or is great as an aperitif.

Appellation: Italy
Varietal: 95% Moscato, 4% fresh pink grapefruit juice, 1% natural grapefruit aroma
Analysis: 5.5% alcohol / volume
Total Acidity: 5.5 g/l