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Tasting: Le Velette Il Raggio

Last week, Lisa and I got together with A&M, RM, SL and BB (names are protected for privacy). One of the tasters is a local wine judge, the other has completed their Sommelier Diploma Program or SDP (congrats!) and the final taster has almost completed all of the requirements of the SDP (congrats again!).

We tasted two wines from Le Velette: Sole Uve and Il Raggio.

This is Part II of the tasting and covers, Il Raggio.

Introduction

When you mention sweet wine from Italy, most people usually look at you like you’re trying to divide 234 by 17, as they’re really not sure what you’re talking about.  The land is famous for robust reds and subtle whites, but sweet wines tend to fall below the radar.

However, mention Vin Santo, Moscato d’Asti or Marsala and something interesting happens:  waves of memories wash over people’s eyes and you’ll know you’ve got their attention.  They reminisce of rolling hills dotted with cypress trees or dipping bread in sweet wine on a busy patio while the world rushes by.

While Il Ragggio is not for everyone (as not everyone savours sweet wine the way we do, and that’s just fine with us), it is an outstanding representation of sweet wine that can be produced in Italy.  Il Raggio is a blend of three grapes that have a long tradition related to sweet wine:  Moscato (40%), Sauvignon Blanc (40%) and Viognier (20%).

Even though this is a relatively new wine from Le Velette, James Suckling has already heaped praise on Il Raggio, giving it an honourable 85 points out of 100.

Sweet wine like this – especially from Italy – is hard to find at the local wine and spirits store (in our case, the LCBO), but we’re in the business of making it more ubiquitous and hope the following notes might inspire everyone to try Il Raggio in the future.

Noteworthy Wines is pleased to remind you that we have the 2009 vintage available for private order.

For more background on Il Raggio, please visit the Il Raggio information page.

The review below covers the 2008 vintage.

Colour

RM:  clear and transparent, medium gold holds well to rim

BB:  clear, transparent.  Golden yellow core fades to a watery rim.

SL:  yellow core to clear, watery rim.  Bright and reflective.

Other notes:  Light amber core to clear rim.

Nose

RM:  clean nose with notes of baked apple, apricot, orange, bouquet of caramel, mineral, baked pear, lime

BB:  clean nose with a hint of nut.  Honey, stone fruits, lanolin, slight touch of metallic notes.

SL:  a clean and fruity nose with pear, apricot, peach and floral hints.

Other notes:  canned pear juice.

Palate

RM:  medium for all the standard tasting notes:  sugar, acidity, alcohol, body.  Very light hint of oak.

BB:  sweet taste with medium acid.  Good finish with tastes of canned pear & syrup.  Hint of nuttiness (almond skins) on finish.

SL:  medium sweet on the sugar scale and medium-high acidity.  Medium alcohol.  Medium to full body.  Smooth, rich fruit with tastes of apricot/peaches and hints of nuttiness.

Other notes:  Sweet but not cloying.  9% alcohol.  Touch of spice.  Mineral from local tufa rock.

Conclusions

RM:  Long finish, fairly complex with a touch of nuttiness as an aftertaste.  Overall score:  9/10.

BB:  A great gift wine for holidays and celebrations.

SL:  Very long finish.

Other notes:  this wine is a perfect gift wine for sweet wine fans and those who aim to please or celebrate.  Weddings, birthdays, births (this wine may last to the classic 18th birthday), anniversaries, retirement parties and traditional feasts all offer opportunities to savour and enjoy this unique sweet wine.

Ordering

Orders are currently being taken over the phone (as of June 25, 2012). You can call 519-858-3765 or email us at bill@noteworthywines.ca. Terms are 100% deposit and delivery will be approximately 6-8 weeks.

 

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