And what if agriculture was primarily a question of culture? Gathered under the Italian sun, a handful of vignerons and a cinema director share their passion for wine and cinéma. In just a few years, liberated farmers have transformed the face of wine and its market by producing a wine called "natural". With a taste for freedom, transmission, artisanal integrity and health of the planet (and its people) they have begun a resistance. Ten years after Mondovino, Jonathan Nossiter has gone to Italy in search of this resistance, and to meet some of these choosers of life.
Put your hands up if at some stage during this summer you were offered a glass of red wine for aperitif. And keep ‘em up if, when you said yes, the barman went to the fridge to get it. You were probably in a cool hipster bar or eatery, and the barman probably had a stylish red beard (and I have no comment on red beards, other than to say, objectively, that they are very cool).
There is a genuine and apparently lasting trend towards drinkability in wines, including and especially in reds. The classic codes are slowly being broken, mainly thanks to a curious, de-complexed Generation Y, who just wants every experience to be fun. And they want it to be fun now. Red wines made with easily drinkable structures, light on tannin, big on flavour and acidity, fit this bill. And fruity, low tannin wines with a good acid structure can taste a bit like… well… they kind of behave a little bit like white wine in the mouth. So why not drink them chilled?
That’s what’s happening. And the biggest proponents of this style of wine making seem to be the natural wine crowd, and a lot of it is thanks to producers using a carefully judged dose of the winemaking technique called Carbonic Maceration. Check out the spot-light on this technique below.
So are you serving “highly drinkable” red wines? Are you serving them chilled? It might be time to start.