Villa Russiz Merlot Collio Graf de la Tour 2005

Winemaker's Notes:

Founded in the nineteenth century by the childless Elvine Ritter de Zahony the estate houses both an educational institution and a world-class winery. The profits from the latter go to support the former. Rarely can buying and drinking fine wine have done quite so much good in the world. Yet Villa Russiz is not as one blogger put it a "charity album", worth buying for the story but not the content. Instead, it is one of the northern Italy's greatest wineries. It has won more coveted Tri Biccheri awards from the Gambero Rosso than any other Friuilian winery. Classic Italian grapes like Pinot Grigio and Tocai Fruliano thrive here but there are also fantastic Alpine versions of Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay and Merlot that shine with a rarely found intensity of fruit and crisply pressed structure. The grapes were separated from the stems, then left to ferment, and subsequently macerate for about fifteen days. The wine was drawn off the lees and then aged for 12 to 15 months in small oak barrels. It was subsequently blended in stainless steel vats, before ageing for five months in bottleThis Graf de la Tour Merlot shows ruby red, with a slightly grassy nose. The palate is soft, complex, with superb balance in the mouth; it improves remarkably in the cellar, acquiring an outstanding range of tertiary aromas. A fine accompaniment for roast, fried or stewed white and red meats, especially rabbit and poultry

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Founded in the nineteenth century by the childless Elvine Ritter de Zahony the estate houses both an educational institution and a world-class winery. The profits from the latter go to support the former. Rarely can buying and drinking fine wine have done quite so much good in the world. Yet Villa Russiz is not as one blogger put it a "charity album", worth buying for the story but not the content. Instead, it is one of the northern Italy's greatest wineries. It has won more coveted Tri Biccheri awards from the Gambero Rosso than any other Friuilian winery. Classic Italian grapes like Pinot Grigio and Tocai Fruliano thrive here but there are also fantastic Alpine versions of Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay and Merlot that shine with a rarely found intensity of fruit and crisply pressed structure. The grapes were separated from the stems, then left to ferment, and subsequently macerate for about fifteen days. The wine was drawn off the lees and then aged for 12 to 15 months in small oak barrels. It was subsequently blended in stainless steel vats, before ageing for five months in bottleThis Graf de la Tour Merlot shows ruby red, with a slightly grassy nose. The palate is soft, complex, with superb balance in the mouth; it improves remarkably in the cellar, acquiring an outstanding range of tertiary aromas. A fine accompaniment for roast, fried or stewed white and red meats, especially rabbit and poultry

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