Best For Gifting: Michele Chiarlo Nivole Moscato D’asti
Courtesy of Drizly.com
Region: Piedmont, Italy | ABV: 5% | Tasting Notes: Canned Peaches, Apricots, Fresh-cut herbs, Floral
This fragrant, flavor-packed moscato dAsti oozes with flavors of canned peaches, apricots, white flower blossoms, fresh-cut herbs and jasmine. Not sure what to get the sweet wine lover in your life? This bottle promises to impressand the fact that its made with organically-farmed fruit is a bonus. Snag one for yourself while youre at it.
Nv Chateau Diana Sparkling Moscato
If sparkling wine is more your thing then this bottle of sparkling moscato wine is sure to have you excited.
It is made in the Chateau Diana Winery which is located in Italy. It has a moscato blend and just a 6% alcohol by volume percentage. This is ideal for those who like something a bit more delicate.
The even better news about this moscato wine is the price. One bottle of this NV Chateau Diana Sparkling Moscato Wine is just $10. You can also get a pack of 3 bottles for $30 or a pack of 6 bottles for just $60.
The main flavors you will find in this moscato wine are pear, almond and green apple. It will match perfectly with light pasta dishes and shellfish.
The History Of Moscato Wine
The history of Moscato wine is very old and the first documents attesting its presence in Piedmont date back to the first years of the 14th century. The Moscato Piedmontese wine that was already produced between 14th and 15th century became popular in the middle of the 16th century, when Emanuele Filiberto, Duke of Savoy, began an important reorganization of his state mainly aimed at important improvements in agriculture and, therefore, also on viticulture techniques. A better selection of the cultivars brought to a wide increase of the number of vineyards, with Muscat grapes vineyards becoming the most diffused and the Moscato wine the main produce of the region. Starting from 1963, the specifications for the controlled designations of origin were enacted and the Moscato producers established the strict specifications to be followed by producers in order to protect and prepare this wine in the best possible way.
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The Best Red Wines To Buy For Christmas 2021
Flavours of blueberries, strawberries, damsons, redcurrants and sticky black liquorice, the best red wines add richness to the season
We’ve already published my pick of the best white wines and top champagnes and sparkling wines for Christmas 2021. Now, here come the reds.
It was hard to narrow it down on the reds as there are a lot of good wines out there. And I know that its easier to order online if you can mix a case. So I will add that if you have your eye on the Crozes-Hermitage from Yapp, consider adding the red-fruited Le Petit Caboche 2020 and the glorious northern Rhône Patrick Jasmin La Giroflarie 2017 to the box. As well as a couple of whites, the lovely, fresh Cordier Reuilly 2020 and white châteauneuf from Domaine du Père Caboche .
While if youre looking at Lea & Sandeman, you could consider the glossy Chateau Capbern 2015 St Estèphe , the lovely fleurie from Clos de la Roilette and L& Ss excellent own-label white burgundy .
If you’re a red wine drinker, take a look at the options below and start stocking up for the festive period. Happy Christmas!
Fox Run Vineyards Cabernet Franc 2018
New York knows Cab Franc, and this wine is a shining example. It smells like a pizza topped with bell peppers and olives. It has such soulful acidity, that itâs just enough to lift the depth on the palate. Buy a case, itâs worth it. This wine will pair with any meal â from pizza to steak and burgers. Rating: 92
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Background Information About Moscato Wine
Moscato as a genre is best known for its sweet flavors or peach and orange blossom. It gets its name from Muscat, the Italian name for Muscat Blanc, one of the oldest grape varieties in the world. Muscat grapes are one of the most ancient winemaking fruits, with documented uses in ancient Greece and Rome. Muscats long lineage has resulted in over 200 known varieties, creating endless variation in flavor and style.
Our Favorite Moscato Drink Recipes
Whether you play up the dessert factor or go for a brunch-ready Moscato mimosa, weve dug up a few delicious Moscato cocktail recipes that offer a bit of a departure from your usual dessert sipper.
Moscato Honey Wine Cocktail
Moscato meets more sweetness in this easy-to-make drink. Before you dismiss this as sweetness overload, keep in mind pairing basics. The sweet white wine plays nicely with fresh raspberries and the subtle sweetness of the honey. Honey, wine and fresh fruit come together to create a perfectly refreshing drink that can easily take the place of dessert.
- 1 ½ tablespoons of honey
- 1/2 tablespoon of hot water
- Juice from ½ a fresh lemon
- 4 oz. of Moscato dAsti
- Mix the honey with the hot water in a glass, stirring until the honey has fully dissolved in the liquid.
- Next, add the Moscato and the lemon. Stir until all ingredients are completely mixed.
- Top off with ice and garnish with a lemon slice and mint leaf for a little extra oomph.
- Drizzle honey over the top and serve.
Apple Cider Sangria with Red Moscato
A unique take on the sangria, this version brings the summertime staple right into the fall and winter months. Made with apple cider and a delicious lineup of seasonal fruits, this Red Moscato Sangria is the perfect drink to serve at a low-key weekend get together, or just a regular Tuesday night.
- 1/2 cup fresh, pitted black cherries
- 1/2 cup cranberries
- 1/2 bottle Pink Moscato
- 2 whole small strawberries
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Vin Santo Del Chianti
What better way to celebrate the birth of Christ than with Vin Santo? After all, the name literally means Holy Wine. Crafted from partially raisined grapes, this dessert wine from Chianti dates back to antiquity. Vin Santo is made in a special way that leads to really rich, deep taste.
We offer a Vin Santo wine made from Malvasia with flavours of ripe apricot, lemon zest and ruby grapefruit. Just like another popular Christmas dessert wine, sherry, Vin Santo del Chianti comes in a range of sweetness levels ranging from bone-dry to tongue-tinglingly sweet. The medium-sweet La Castellina Squarcialupi Vin Santois our personal favourite. It isnt syrupy, but still has the perfect amount of sugar for rounding out a meal.
Moscato Alternatives You Need To Try
If youve ever visited Italy youve tried Moscato. Its that sugary sweet, sometimes fizzy, easy sipping wine we all love to hate, hate to love, or openly and proudly adore. But whats a wine lover to do when they want to get out of their comfort zone and try some alternatives to their beloved Moscato?
Easy: turn to some of these six similar sippers to slowly broaden your horizons while still satisfying that sweet tooth .
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Best For Brunch: Risata Moscato D’asti
Courtesy of Minibar
Region: Piedmont, Italy ABV: 5.5% | Tasting Notes: Stone fruit, Lemon rind, Honey
When picking a wine for a boozy brunch that promises not to kill the rest of your day, seeking out something with a low-ABV is keyenter moscato dAsti.
This popular expression from Risata wines is lightly effervescent and marked by succulent notes of stone fruit, honey, and fresh-cut flowers. Sip chilled on its own or alongside sweet brunch dishes like crepes, fruit pancakes or gooey French toast.
What Are The Best Wines For Dessert
Dessert even just the word evokes a certain sweet, savory comfort. To most people, dessert means the final culinary experience of an evening following dinner. Images of cake, chocolate, pudding, jello, fruit, and other assorted sugary treats float through the mind.
One thing that might not come as automatically into the spotlight is wine.
The truth is, though, that there are many wines designed to be desserts. For one who may never have heard this before, it may come as a shock. Dessert is generally seen as a part of a meal in other words, a solid food, not a drink. This guide is here to help you or help you show your guests how great a dessert the right drink can be.
Not every wine is equipped to fill this role, however. Indeed, the ones meant to cap off a night the right way are dubbed dessert wines for a reason. Like many of the food desserts above, they are sweet in taste. From fortified wines to ice wines, there are tons of choices.
Many of them are also low in alcohol content. They are not intended as tools to get drunk, rather treats to be savored. But before we get to our list of the best wines for this, lets go over a few cardinal rules of serving wine as a dessert.
- If you want the focus to be the wine, do not serve solid dessert as well
- Use the 3 oz. serving size to ensure savoring
- Serve in shallow glasses
- Use a wine cooler whenever possible. If not possible, store wine in the refrigerator for no more than 2 days
- Limit refills
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Muscat Grapes Go Global
Though it hails from Italy, Moscato grows just about anywhere in the world. From its European origins, Moscato can be grown in almost any climate, though the plant prefers the accommodating warmth of the Mediterranean climate, thriving in France, Spain, Italy, Portugal and certain regions of Australia.
Moscato is one of the oldest varieties of wine, making an appearance throughout history in several different cultures spanning thousands of years. The long history of the grapes throughout has resulted in a variety of mutations and crossings creating at least 200 variations of the Muscat grape.
Here are the more common varieties of the Muscat grape:
- Muscat Blanc à Petits Grains, or just Muscat Blanc
- Moscatel, also known as Zibibbo or Muscat of Alexandria
- Moscato Giallo
- Black Muscat
- Orange Muscat
- Muscat Ottonel
- Moscatel de Setúbal
Asti and Moscato dAsti Whats the Difference
Despite the well-travelled history of this grape, most Moscato youll see comes from a region in Italy, called Asti. Province, town and wine, this triple threat name is part of the Piedmont area in Northwestern Italy
While the name Asti on its own refers exclusively to the fully sparkling version of the white wine, Asti Spumante, as we mentioned Moscato dAsti refers to the more slightly sparkling wine that we generally associate with the name Moscato.
Ruffino Moscato D’asti Italy
Peach and orange blossoms and a bit of carbonation greets your senses as you drink this Moscato wine. It is produced in Asti in Piedmont, which is also the source of world-renown Barbera. With an ABV of 5-6% and gentle sparkling, this wine has grapes, apricot, lychee, and rose petal flavors.
The 2014 Ruffino Moscato d’Asti is best enjoyed with salami, cheese plates, melon, and delicate desserts. It also pairs well with Asian dishes such as Korean-style fried chicken and chicken teriyaki.
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Stella Rosa Platinum Italy
Made from a blend of select grape varieties, this Moscato wine is naturally carbonated and has green apple, vanilla, and elderflower flavors. The grapes used for this Moscato wine comes from the region of Asti in Piedmont, Italy. Piedmont grapes are usually known for their characteristic sweetness, firm tannins, and aroma of roses.
The Stella Rosa Platinum is made from white grape varieties, including Arneis, Cortese, Timorasso, and Muscat. It is best used for wine-based cocktails.
Bodegas Botani Moscato 2014 Spain
A delicious and versatile Moscato produced exclusively from the Muscat of Alexandria variety is this Bodegas Botani Moscato 2014.
This is a dry Moscato with a fresh and smooth taste and floral-fruity aromas of mandarin, apple, orange and wilted flowers. The fermentation, partially made in oak barrels, gives the wine a beautiful pale straw color.
This wine pairs perfectly with fish, shellfish and seafood dishes, as well as with Asian foods and spicy Indian dishes.
However, this Bodegas Botani Moscato 2014 can be successfully served as an aperitif or simply as a refreshing white wine.
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The 15 Best And Most Affordable Wines To Collect Now
Looking for wines to stash away, but dont want to break the bank? Dont worryweve got you covered.
After tasting thousands of wines this past year, we crafted our annual Top 100 Cellar Selections list. While some of those bottles might bend a few budgets, there are still plenty of options that sit right in that sweet spot of ageable and accessibly priced.
These well-priced selections span the globe, from California, Washington, New York, Chile and Australia in the New World, to Italy, Portugal and France in the Old World. Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Mourvèdre and a range of bold red blends make a showing but look to Riesling, Soave Classico and a Sauvignon Blanc-Sémillon blend for white wine options that will hold up well.
Here are 15 of the best wines priced at $35 and under to line your cellar.
Gini 2018 La Froscà $30, 95 points. One of the iconic wines of the denomination, this gorgeous, polished white opens with enticing scents of yellow stone fruit, summer wildflowers and hay along with a whiff of wet slate. Elegantly structured, the delicious palate doles out ripe apricot, white peach and tangerine drop candy before a savoryalmost saltyalmond finish. While its wonderful now, it will continue to evolve and age beautifully for years. Drink through 2030. De Grazia Imports, LLC. Cellar Selection.Kerin OKeefe
Best Overall: Louis Latour Chteau Corton Grancey
Region: Côte de Beaune, Burgundy, France | ABV: 14% | Tasting Notes: Red currants, Blood orange, Dried raspberries, Baking spice
One of the top names in all of Burgundy is Louis Latour, and one of the most unique wines it produces is this Château Corton Granceya blend of four Grand Cru vineyards .
Delivering profound notes of black and red currants, blackberry fruit, blood orange citrus, and dried raspberries underscored by baking spices and dried red florals, this pinot noir is also a textural masterpiece with mouthwatering acidity and grippy cedar-like tannins.
Good to Know:
When it comes to red wine, balance is a non-negotiable for Alexandra Neverov, sommelier at Topping Rose House in Bridgehampton, New York. For me, there has to be this unspoken equilibrium in a great red wine, from tannins to alcohol to acid and fruit balance, she says. Neverov also goes for reds with pronounced aromatics. If I find myself entranced, then I feel that wine can be truly enchanting.
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Innocent Bystander Pink Moscato 2011 $12
Courtesy of Innocent Bystander
This light pink, slightly sweet Australian Moscato offers a flirtatious mix of strawberries and cream with a whisper of rose petal on the nose. Intense sweet fruit, playful frizz ante bubbles, and an unexpected, enduring finish all collide to make this a must-try Moscato.
Best Overall: Gd Vajra Moscato Dasti
Courtesy of Drizly.com
Region: Piedmont, Italy | ABV: 5.5% | Tasting Notes: Lychee, Pear, Floral
In its most popular form, moscato dAsti hails from Italys Piedmont region. The wine is generally off-dry to sweet and ranges in effervescence levels from frizzante to spumante. G.D. Vajra is one of the regions most respectable producers and is best known for their responsible farming practices, longstanding history, and well-crafted bottles. Notes of juicy pears, lychee, honeysuckle, and rose petals jump from the wines frothy and fruit-driven palate.
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How To Find The Best Moscato Wine
Many people think Moscato is a sweet wine without much versatility, but that couldnt be farther from the truth. There are many kinds of Moscato wines as well as a variety of different uses. Besides just sipping, you can use Moscato in desserts or pair it with the right cuisine for an experience beyond compare.
Torres Via Esmeralda Spain
Excellent aromatics of lime blossom and acacia honey with notes of Muscat grape, citrus, passionfruit, and grapefruit acidity, this is the perfect Moscato wine for Thanksgiving. Theres no need to make it into a cocktail as it is already good on its own.
As one renowned sommelier claims, the white grapes used in this wine came from the Penedes region in Catalunya, where the world-famous Cava hails from. At 11% ABV, you can enjoy this wine without having to endure the high alcohol content.
Pairs well with fish and seafood dishes or appetizers such as freshly fried herring and smoked salmon spread with pita bread or tortilla chips.
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Pairing Foods With Pink And Red Moscatos
Being from the same grape means Moscatos all share a general flavor profile sweet, fruity and a touch woodsy. However, the little differences between add up, shifting the pairing options ever so slightly. Here are a few tips:
- If youre drinking a Pink Moscato, its hint of Merlot can handle a bit more heartiness. Bring it to the dinner table try pairing this unique wine with chicken, ham or flaky, buttery seafood like crab or lobster. Though Moscatos typically rule the dessert menu, Pink Moscato is pretty versatile, and can even handle teaming up with a bit of steak.
- If you do opt for the traditional dessert route, keep it simple and pair a Pink Moscato with other vanilla-type flavors that echo the notes present in the wine think shortcakes, caramels or a shortbread-type cookie.
- Red Moscato on the other hand, though still made with the Muscat grape, tends to stand up to bolder flavors than its lighter counterparts do. Try pairing with BBQ fare, soft cheeses or anything spicy.