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Moldovan wines from importer Imperia

Website: www.imperia-uk.com

Of all the former Soviet states, Moldova has one of the best natural situations for making good quality wines, as well as a long history of viticulture. It is bordered by Romania and Ukraine. According to Wikipedia, Moldova has around 60 000 hectares of vines in production, which is quite a lot (half of the area of South Africa, for example). The wine industry has seen its share of ups and downs, but now they are targeting export markets such as the UK. I tasted the following wines, all brought into the country by a new agency, Imperia (www.imperia-uk.com).  

Preferate Chardonnay 2007 Kazayak, Moldova
12% alcohol. Nice and fruity with just a hint of lemon and grapefruit. Overall, this is crisp, clean, light and very drinkable, but perhaps a touch dilute Ė but still quite refreshing. A bit like a Petit Chablis in style. 84/100 (06/09)

Preferate Cahor 2005 Kazayak, Moldova
16% alcohol.
Very interesting nose with sweet plum, damson and dark cherry notes, along with a little volatile lift that adds complexity. The palate is sweetly fruited with an attractive spiciness and a nice plummy, acidic finish. Thereís good balance here between the sweet fruit and the lively acidity, making it a robust, spicy dessert wine. Really convincing. 88/100 (06/09)

Saperavi Lion Gri NV Moldova
60% Saperavi, the balance Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, aged in oak. 12% alcohol. Vivid red colour. The nose has bright fruit with some sweet, dusty, spicy oak. The palate is fresh with firm tannins and bright red berry fruit, but thereís quite an imprint of spicy oak here. Very fresh, but I canít help feeling it would have been better without the oak. 80/100 (04/09 )

Ch‚teau Lion Gri Merlot 2003 Tamlaza, Moldova
Aged in oak. 12% alcohol. Ripe, fruity, berryish nose is fresh and appealing. The palate has lovely fresh berry and cherry fruit, but the finish is marred a little by spicy, dusty oak notes and slightly aggressive tannins. A very fresh red wine. 81/100 (04/09)

Casa Başcalia Pinot Franc NV Moldova
12% alcohol.
Pale-ish cherry red colour. The dominant theme here is spicy, slightly dusty cherry fruit with a hint of earthiness. Thereís some nice fruit here, with a savoury spicy core making it quite food compatible. A tasty, slightly rustic, mid-weight style with nice acidity. 85/100 (06/09)

Moltus Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 De Leova, Moldova
Has a shocking-looking agglomerate cork, but itís not tainted. Fresh, bright berryish fruit on the nose. The palate is juicy and ripe with attractive, focused berry fruit and a hint of sweet spiciness. Well made. 82/100 (04/09 )

Moltus Merlot De Leova 2006 Moldova
11.5% alcohol.
Very poor quality agglomerate cork, but fortunately the wine isnít tainted. Sweet, ripe, open berry fruit dominates the nose and palate. It tastes quite sweet, with some residual sugar? Nice pure fruit with a lovely soft smooth palate, and no rough edges. A real crowd-pleaser. 83/100 (06/09)

 

 

Wines tasted 05/08  
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