For this week’s Wine Wednesday, we are heading back to the 1970′s and imbibing in it’s most popular wine – Riunite Lambrusco. As many of you may know, I love, love, love Lambrusco. It is fizzy and fruity and pairs really well with food. But, I had never had the wine that beget the craze in the United States – Riunite. As an aside, Riunite was one of the only Lambruscos available in the United States until 1994 when importers began bringing in other producers into the United States. I don’t know why I never tried it. As you know, I don’t shy away from “budget” wine, I embrace them. I guess that I never really sought out Riunite or thought out it. But, conveniently enough, Banfi Vintners sent us some wines to try for the holidays and among the gems was a bottle of Riunite Lambrusco – the one, the only, the original. And, it was delicious! Even better, it retails for only $5 a bottle and was one of the best $5 bottles of wine that I have tasted.
When thinking of wines to pour for your New Year’s Eve party, give the Riunite a try. It is what I would call a “cocktail party wine,” meaning that it’s great served on its own and doesn’t need food to enhance or tame its wilder tendencies. Lambrusco always pairs wonderfully with cured meats, meatballs and cheeses so it’s a perfect accompaniment to cocktail food.
As an aside, Banfi Vintners does a great job at importing quality wines at prices that qualify for inclusion in Wine Wednesday with a nice selection of wines under $10. And, Banfi also came up with the slogan of “Riunite on Ice, So Nice” – a jingle that is stuck in the head of anyone who lived through the 1970′s. The tagline has been updated for the 21st century with “Still on Ice, Still So Nice”.
Here is our review of the Riunite Lambrusco:
Appearance: clear with a medium purplish-ruby color
Nose: clean with medium, youthful, fruity notes of grapes, cherry, plums and a touch of violet
Palate: medium sweet, medium acidity, low alcohol, medium minus intensity of grapes, cherry, plums and a touch of violet with a medium minus finish. Large bubbles with medium persistence.
Rating: Good to a very good wine that is easy to drink, fruity and bubbly. Will help keep any party budget on track and great for popping open on a Wednesday night!