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Posts Tagged ‘Toscana IGT’

By Claire Yeading, Grand Crew Contributor

For wine lovers there are many reasons to make a wine vacation your vacation of choice for 2014: and no, we’re not just talking about the chance to sample a wide variety of vintages! Colorful landscapes, beautiful vineyards and the chance to meet a host of interesting and likeminded people are also all great reasons to make a wine vacation the vacation for you. But which trip is the best one for you? If money were no object, where in the world should you be booking that flight to? Here are some ideas:

Try Tuscany

Tuscany is renowned as being one of the greatest wine regions in the world. A trip here is worth undertaking simply to try the famous Chianti Classico at source! But as well as the wine, Tuscany is an incredibly beautiful part of the world to visit. Think stunning landscapes, leafy vineyards and rolling hills. Many of the wineries are found in converted castles, which only adds to the excitement and drama of a visit to the region. When you visit Tuscany you’ll find endless sunshine, and your wine can be complemented by the fabulous plump olives that the region is famous for too. If you love your food as much as you love your wine, then Tuscany is the perfect vacation destination for you.

Love the Loire Valley                         

You can’t write a list of places to visit for a wine vacation without mentioning France! And the Loire Valley is one of the most fascinating parts of France to visit for a wine vacation. Smoky cabernet, sweet muscadets and crisp sauvignon blancs should all be on your must-drink list when you visit this famous wine region.  The Loire Valley is one of the most beautiful and picturesque parts of France. It is famed for the lush greenness of the landscape, and you’ll often hear the gentle sound of the Loire river passing by the vineyards you choose to visit. You’ll come for the wine, stay for the beautiful chateaux, and contemplate moving here forever before you leave!

Book a Wine Cruise

If you’re interest is in European wine and you’d like to explore more than one region during your vacation, then a great option would be to book a European food and wine cruise. This will enable you to explore some of the continent’s most famous and popular wine producing regions from the comfort of your cruise ship. You can also enjoy some especially fine wines, hand-chosen to enhance your journey, whilst you travel.  According to Iglu Cruise, these kind of cruises enable travelers to immerse themselves in this important social and cultural aspect of the port of call. Everything from regional cuisine, wineappreciation and dining etiquette await you on this type of gastronomic adventure. Many cruises will even have expert wine tasters on hand to help to guide you through the grape varieties of each region and teach you everything you need to know about the art of wine tasting. For the wine lover, this really and truly is the trip of a lifetime.

Closer to Home in Napa Valley

If you want to stay within the United States and travel a little closer to home then there’s only one place to go. Head to the Napa Valley. With over fifty different types of grapes on offer, as well as some beautiful vineyards and cozy caverns where you can sit and enjoy a glass of fine wine, this trip is the perfect way to relax and unwind whilst exploring the world of fine wine. Napa Valley is just fifty miles north of San Francisco, meaning that you could also combine your tranquil wine trip with exploration of this vibrant city too. It’s a best of both worlds vacation, and one that is especially suited to those new to the concept of wine-based vacation.

If you’re thinking of taking a wine vacation for 2014, then there are endless wonderful possibilities for where to travel. So what are you waiting for? Why not start the New Year by booking your dream wine vacation today?

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2006 Monte Antico

Appellation: Toscana IGT

Tasting Notes: 85% Sangiovese, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Merlot.  12.5% AVB.  A light plum color in the glass.  Nose is a little tight, but I get some red and dark fruit and there’s an herbal component.  This wine is remarkably smooth.  There’s good dark fruit, with well integrated tannins and nice acidity.  This is not complex wine, but it has good structure and is very drinkable.  Will match very well with casual tomato based foods (pizza, pasta, etc).  This is good stuff for everyday drinking, and from what I can find on the price, this is a very good value.  (This was a gift from a friend).

Rating: 3/5, 14/20, 87/100

Price: ~$11.99 (Snooth).

A note on ratings:  I use the 100 point rating for Cellartracker, even though my palate is still developing.  As a statistics geek, I know that the variability in scores works itself out as the number of scores increases.  However, my score may not be yours, or Robert Parker’s.  I much prefer to use a 5 point (or star, or whatever you want to call it) scale, as it more represents my reaction to wine, which is more simple than a 100 point scale represents.  I like the 20 point scale as the more detailed score.   On this site, I will provide all three, although the most meaningful are the 5 and 20 point ratings.

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