Tasted: March 2020
Variety: Chardonnay (80%), Pinot Noir (20%)
We are continuing with Croatian Uplands and bringing you one of the top Croatian sparkling wines to watch out for, that is, if you can get one of the 2500 bottles that were made. It comes to us from Kurtalj Family Winery, a small local winery from Plesivica region. This hilly area is well known for top quality sparkling wines and we will be going through quite a few of them as the time goes on. The one we are talking about here is a traditional method sparkling wine made from classical Champagne varieties of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. It has spent 5 years on the lease before being released on the market.
Clear dark-lemon coloured sparkling wine boasts lovely sturdy effervescence.
Aromas on the nose scream Chardonnay in all the right ways. Fruity notes of yellow apple, warm lemon and honeysuckle are well rounded and ample. Secondary aromas are beautifully incorporated and include aromas of toast and brioche.
Palate follows the nose. Fruity primary expression is reinforces with mellow aromas of honey and almond. Lovely acidity makes the wine fresh and hardly a chore to drink. Expected long finish completes the picture.
Food pairing for a sparkling wine like this is actually quite a joy. It is refreshing enough to take on lighter foods like marinated anchovies or amberjack tartare, but can be pushed much more into holding its own “against” the lights of pork, chicken, or fresh water fish. Some pairing ideas include traditional ham in bread dough, creamy cheese (think Brie) and grilled calamari.