Sanctum Pinot Noir 2015
This week's wine is a Slovenian Pinot Noir that I picked up from Bar Brunello, my favorite wine bar. Erik and I went to an Eastern European wine tasting at the wine bar a little over a month ago, and this was my favorite wine that we tasted. Slovenian wine is incredibly underrated. There are so many incredible and affordable Slovenian wines out there, because it's not a particularly well-known region, you can find some really high quality wines for really cheap. Slovenia is right next to Northern Italy, and it has a similar climate. If you like Italian wine, you'll probably love Slovenian wine. Wine has actually been made in Slovenia for longer than it's been made in Spain and France, but it's just not a well-known country. There are three main wine regions in Slovenia: the Littoral Region, the Lower Sava Region, and the Drava region. The Littoral region specializes in Merlot-Cabernet blends and Pinela and Zelen white wines, which are local grapes that make a crisp and somewhat delicate white wine. The Lower Sava region tends to make more table wine, which is generally lower quality than the other two regions. The Drava region is the largest of the three region, and almost all the wine produced in the region is white wine.
This particular Pinot Noir is from the Drava region. It's one of the few red wines grown in the area. It comes from an area where Chardonnay and Pinot Noir grapes have been growing since the 12th century, when French monks settled there and planted the grapes. When I poured my glass of wine, the first thing that I noticed was the gorgeous amber tint to the color of the wine. It's a very unique color for red wine, sometimes I see very deep purpley red wine, but rarely do a see a more amber shade of red. When I stuck my nose in the glass to smell the wine, I picked up a delicate floral scent, with a hint of berry and oak on the back end, but florals, especially violet and lavender, were definitely the primary scent. The taste of the wine matched up with the scents. It was a very delicate but still complex wine. The florals were the primary flavor as well as scent, and it was a strong flavor that stood of well to the slight aftertaste of oak and pink peppercorn. This was one of my favorite Pinot Noirs that I've had in awhile. I paired it with grilled salmon and roasted carrots. I love pairing a delicate and light red wine with salmon. Traditionally fish pairs better with white wine, but salmon is a richer and meatier fish, so a light red wine holds up well to it. This wine would also pair well with a cheese and charcuterie plate or a butternut squash dish in the fall.