Wines To Find

Wines To Find, Ep 181: Alpine Wines Uncovered

June 29, 2023 Michelle & Sandy Season 14 Episode 181
Wines To Find
Wines To Find, Ep 181: Alpine Wines Uncovered
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Wines: Pfitscher Saum Sauvignon Blanc and Matan Pinot Nero

Get ready to elevate your palate as Aric Wood, the co-founder of Archetype Wines, takes us on a tantalizing exploration of Alpine wines. We'll be pouring and savoring two exquisite Pfitscher wines from South Tyrol/Sudtiro, Italy, while diving into the enchanting world of wine-making. Aric's infectious passion for these wines, with their vibrant minerality and acidity resulting from the Sauvignon Blanc vineyard's diurnal range, will leave you eager to expand your own wine knowledge. This isn't just a conversation for connoisseurs, but for anyone who appreciates a beautifully balanced glass of wine, perfect for those sun-kissed afternoons.

Our journey doesn't stop there. We'll unravel the marvelous complexities of the Alpine wine region, guided by Aric's expertise. From the indigenous grapes of Switzerland, the unique microclimates of the Dolomites, to the breathtaking beauty of Alto Adige, there's so much to discover. We'll also get the inside scoop on the best time of year to visit the Alpine region and the price point of our featured wines. Get your wine glasses ready; we promise this is a journey you won't want to miss!

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Music from https://filmmusic.io "Night In Venice" by Kevin MacLeod (https://incompetech.com) License: CC BY (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/


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Sandy & Michelle


Speaker 1:

On this episode of Wines to Find St and Michelle are joined by Eric Wood of Archetype Wines, importer of wines from the Alpine region of Europe. While tasting two Fittier wines from Sudtiro in Italy, they discuss Eric's passion for Alpine wines and what makes them so unique in this first of three episodes featuring Alpine wines. Let's listen.

Speaker 2:

Hi, i'm Michelle and I'm Sandy. We're two sisters tasting and reviewing wine with the goal of taking the WTF out of Wines to Find. Welcome to Wines to Find, episode 181. Our wines today are a Fittier, saxum Savignon Blanc and Matane Pinot Nero. Our guest is Eric Wood. Eric is co-founder and co-owner of Archetype Wines. Archetype focuses on Alpine wines, featuring wines from the seven different countries considered the Alpine region, and we are so excited to have Eric on to tell us about that region and these specific wines. And just let's dive right in, eric. Welcome to Wines to Find.

Speaker 3:

Well, thank you so much, Michelle and Sandy. I'm excited to be here.

Speaker 4:

We're absolutely thrilled. I actually found you by looking at your Instagram account. Had Alpine wines and I went cool climate.

Speaker 2:

We jumped on as soon as we saw that Instagram.

Speaker 4:

It's right in my wheelhouse here.

Speaker 2:

Absolutely Thank you Well and our dream area to go? Yeah, that's for sure.

Speaker 4:

Let's go ahead and jump right into wine number one, which is the Savignon Blanc. It is an absolutely lovely color of yellow, very clear, precise. When I look through no cloud, It looks great. It actually even has a little bit of bubbles in it. They're on the side.

Speaker 2:

I love the smell, smell it, mmm, very aromatic. It is very pretty. It's gorgeous.

Speaker 4:

It's good, a bit of floral citrus grapefruit. There's some grapefruit in there, very aromatic. Let's go ahead and taste. Cheers, cheers, cheers.

Speaker 1:

Mark.

Speaker 4:

Cheers, eric. Eric, you know I try, when I saw the A, i keep trying to call you Eric and it's really Eric. I apologize.

Speaker 3:

It's not a problem. It's not the first time in my life.

Speaker 2:

That is some acidic in a nice way, but the acid really is very racy. It reminds me of a New Zealand Savignon Blanc, that grapefruit, that it's light and fresh and it's very, very pleasant.

Speaker 4:

It's got a good bit of tang on it. It does have that citrus, but not as much grapefruit-y as a New Zealand.

Speaker 2:

to me, some of those have been really.

Speaker 4:

And the minerality is really very intense.

Speaker 3:

on this I think one of the things that's really interesting about this wine is and you called it out of the right way there's a lot of acidity to this. There's a lot of diurnal range where this wine is grown. This particular vineyard is at almost 900 meters, So it's very high, and it's on a south-facing peninsula, so it gets a lot of sunlight, a good amount of warmth in the daytime, but at night it gets very, very cool. So we started to see these really fresh styles coming out of this region Good acidity, great food wines, things that really complement food very well.

Speaker 2:

So, speaking of that, that's one thing that we noticed right away too, that we thought was in our wheelhouse is your focus, and you said that you like to find and share wines that are low alcohol and food-friendly. So, tell us about how you got to your part in your palette and then discovering these wines, or was it you discovered these wines and realized that they were part of your? that that's really. you kind of honed in on the low alcohol, food-friendly Which is it? chicken or egg?

Speaker 3:

It is both. Yes, you know, i think there's a movement generally towards wines with lesser alcohol. I think the, you know, the Parker era of really big and effusive wines is not, it's not very food-friendly movement, it's not something that really complements kind of our daily lifestyle. And, you know, wine is really meant to be consumed with food, enjoyed with company, as part of a meal, part of an experience. So this region really gives us a lot of that style They give us, because most of the region is more cool climate, we tend to get wines that have a little lower alcohol, a little higher acidity, very fresh, very mineral and a lot of diversity, and so they really pair brilliantly with food. So, in terms of the chicken or egg, i've been drinking a lot of wine through my life And as I've gotten older I've started to appreciate these wines because there's a lot of elegance to them And they really can really blend into part of your lifestyle.

Speaker 4:

And that's what we always say about wine too is that it should be part of the meal. It's actually, we actually consider it an ingredient to it. So just to make it as a true compliment, Absolutely.

Speaker 3:

And you can see, with a wine like this I mean on its own, there's a lot of nuance, there's, you know, we're getting some of that tropical fruit because of the warm site, but we're also getting that freshness and that minerality. And you can see, it's kind of a dream for pairing lots and lots of different opportunities with these wines, to pair them with food. I like to think that you know, these are, these are some wines You can put these into a restaurant and match them with dozens and dozens of different dishes.

Speaker 2:

Well, and it's perfect. The Savignon Blanc is perfect for a warm day too. I mean, when you think Alps, you think cold, because you know they're mountains, But I don't want people to think that this is a heavy. It's a very light, crisp wine. So, speaking of the area, tell us specifically where these wines are from. They're the Dolomites area, the region, And we had a conversation before we well, while we were having dinner, before we started the podcast and said aren't the Dolomites part of the Alps? Because I always thought that they were separate, but they are, and that kind of leads us into the whole Alpine region. So start with the Dolomites, because that's where these are from, but then give us an overview of that whole.

Speaker 4:

Well, let's have him tell his story first, so that that way we kind of get how did you start this? When did you start enjoying wine? We wanna hear about you a little bit before we get really down to the nitty gritty.

Speaker 3:

Okay, All right. Well, i think the Alps part is more interesting, but I'll start with that. Yeah, i was lucky enough in college to actually live with a group of Europeans and that created a very different college experience for me. I ended up drinking a lot more wine than I did beer, and it really launched my passion for wine, so I started actually studying wine. I started collecting wine in my early 20s. By the time I got to graduate school and business school, i ended up writing my thesis on artisanal winemaking, which really was just an excuse for the boondoggle of going out and spending a lot of time on it.

Speaker 4:

So you wrote your thesis on artisanal winemaking.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, what was the?

Speaker 2:

focus. What were the artisanal wines you focused on?

Speaker 3:

Well, at the time, what I was doing was writing. It was business school, so I was writing a comparison of aspects of quality. In traditional manufacturing, quality is defined by having zero defects, but in art or in wine or other artisanal practices, sometimes it's the defects, the nuance, the unique things that make it special. And so we had the opportunity I won't name names because these folks are still around but I had the opportunity to work with two artisanal wineries in Sonoma, very small production, single vineyard, designate wines, and then, at the same time, i worked in one of the largest brands in Napa and had the opportunity to see what that looked like, and it was quite literally the difference between being in an artist's studio and being in a factory. And though the quality of wines were high in all cases, that sort of special nuance that you get out of a small vineyard to bottle winemaking environment is you can taste it, and you can taste it in these bottles.

Speaker 3:

All the producers at archetype, every one of them works from the vineyard right to the bottle. So they know those vineyards, they know the land, they know the terroir, they know what they can create out of it, but yet every vintage is a new palette. You've got something completely new to start with. So that part of winemaking has always been really the passion for me And it's a big part of why I've now, after a career in management, consulting and working and volunteering in wineries. I live in Oregon so I have the Willamette Valley in my backyard so I'm out there at harvest. I'm doing crops from Molda.

Speaker 4:

So you are doing harvest excellent.

Speaker 3:

Oh yeah, every year, and it's a great way to really just get an understanding of just how complex winemaking is. There's so many different variables, so it's kind of a fascinating intellectual exercise with a great reward at the end, which is these wonderful glasses of wine.

Speaker 4:

That's right it tastes amazing. What a wonderful wine story.

Speaker 2:

So tell us so how does one do their thesis on wine? I would think that you would automatically go into the wine world, but no, you did not. You say where is it? Because you wanted it to just be a hobby. And a lot of people don't want to work in their hobby because then it becomes work.

Speaker 2:

Or was it that you just got a great offer or you were going in a different direction. How did it happen that then, 25 years later, you're like, okay, now, really, i messed up, i should have been in wine all along.

Speaker 3:

You just nailed it right there, I think. Like a lot of American students, I graduated with a ton of school debt And I had the opportunity. I had a couple of competing offers. One was the offer from my heart, which was to work at one of these small wineries that I had been partnering with, And I had a really great opportunity to go there. And then I had an opportunity to go into management consulting at a top tier management consulting firm for about triple the salary, And I actually went to the winemaker and I said I'm so struggling with this decision because my heart's here and that's there. And he gave me some advice which was the best way to make a small fortune in the wine business is to start with a large fortune, And so I We've heard that many, many times.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, well, I will say right now on the record for those of you listening to this don't take that advice. follow your heart. I wish I had actually gone that direction. I had a great career, but it was always there. It was always something I was hungry to do, and so I'm really lucky in my life that my wife and I have been able to actually make this part of our life now.

Speaker 2:

Excellent, and so I would guess that So the jump now is from your career to Alpine wines and how you focused on getting those. So I'm guessing you landed on. I really like these wines, or was it that you liked that area to travel to and then you wanted to bring them home?

Speaker 3:

It's really a merger of my passions. So I was a Central European studies major. In college I lived in the region. I'm also a skier. I have had a fascination with the Alps since I was young And you know, the Alps is really, i think, the most exciting wine region in the world.

Speaker 3:

In a very small, compact area, there's more complexity, more diversity, more styles of food and wine and culture than almost anywhere else, so it's sort of an endless area of wonders. Michelle, you'd asked about the kind of the definition of Alpine wine. So a couple of facts about it. I think that we'll start to unpack this story We've got from.

Speaker 3:

If you start down in the Southwest, in Nice, and you make an arch up to Vienna, it's about 700 miles, so it's not terribly great distance. But the Alpine arch contains within it about 120 different major populated valleys. Each of those valleys has a different microclimate, has a number of different microclimates, has a different culture, has different food, has different cuisine. You can literally cross from one valley into the next and the language shifts and the food shifts and what you're about to eat and drink is going to be different. So in a very small area you can really fill it with a lot of different experiences.

Speaker 3:

And then one other thing I think that's also fascinating about this area is the number of grape varieties. So today we're drinking two international varietals, but there are literally hundreds of indigenous grapes in the Alps. Switzerland alone has over 200 grape varieties that are unique and indigenous to Switzerland. So as a wine drinker, you can travel from valley to valley and taste wine you've never had before, varietals that you've probably never heard of, and you're going to have to figure out how to pronounce. But at the same time, you have these wonderful international varieties that travel well, And what ends up happening in this terroir is that they just present differently. Pinot Noir shows up with a different face than it does here in Oregon, and so it's a fascination for me to be able to see how terroir can influence varieties that we're even familiar with.

Speaker 2:

Well, that definitely is something that excites us, is the expression of the land where the grape is grown. So can I go back now to the Dolomites? Yes, yes.

Speaker 3:

So let's situate ourselves in the Dolomites. So these wines that we're drinking from Fitture are from a region many people have heard of. It's also Adige in Italian. Interestingly enough, this region, which is in the Dolomites, is actually German speaking, so the locals call this region Sudterole or South Terole, and it's a really fascinating part of the Alps, so it is very much in the Alps. The Dolomites are arranged within the Alps. It is a region that was part of a greater Terole part of Austria up until World War I, and so there's still a very strong Germanic tradition in this region. It's also, interestingly enough. We talked about cool climate wines. One thing that people, i think, misunderstand about the Alps is that it's not all cool climate. In fact, bulsano, which is the center of this region, is the hottest city in Italy in the summertime.

Speaker 3:

Oh wow, so there's some fascinating microclimates that happen.

Speaker 3:

Bulsano, bulsano, yes, bulsano, bulsano, yeah, in Italian, or Bosan in German. And so you have these really unique microclimates because of the river valleys, because of the water features, the lakes, the winds, the high temperature difference between day and night, even the aspect, and so you can be in one part of Alto Adige and be in a really hot climate. That's great for growing Merlot or Cabernet, and then you can be in another part where it's predominantly cold and you're only going to have cooler climate varietals, but as a result, you've got an incredible diversity. So the Dolomites I put it on your list For anyone that's interested in wine travel. It's also probably my number one alpine wine starter trip, really OK.

Speaker 2:

Oh, it's the starter trip. Oh, it's the starter trip, yeah, tell us why.

Speaker 4:

Why would that be your starter trip?

Speaker 3:

I would say, for a couple reasons. One, it is a stunningly beautiful place. We've probably all seen pictures of the Dolomites and you can't believe that it's in fact that beautiful, and it truly is.

Speaker 2:

That's why it's on my bucket list. Yeah, it just looks breathtaking.

Speaker 3:

It's breathtaking. There's so much outdoor recreation, there's so much hiking, skiing and these sorts of opportunities. But also, if you're more of an urbanite, the food scene is incredible. The food and wine and culture is top notch And, interestingly enough for Americans listening to this, it's actually less costly than going out to eat here in the US. So you can also have a great travel experience in top notch hotels with fantastic food and wine and get home and realize that it really wasn't any worse than being home, except that you had all these other opportunities, but it's not expensive. So I recommend this as a starting place for people, because it gives folks an opportunity really to see the diversity of terroir and try a number of grapes, including both indigenous grapes as well as international varietals, which are grown there.

Speaker 2:

Before we dive into the Fitcher, tell us I do want to ask about. so you make it sound like it's kind of cosmopolitan a little bit. There are cities and stuff, So, but it's in Italy, but the origin is Austrian. So do you feel like you're in an Austrian town in Italy and are the people more German leaning, or are they more Italian? or in what's the food like? Is it Italian, german influenced? I mean, how does it? what do you even get with that?

Speaker 3:

It's the best of everything. I sound like I'm advertising for all to out of shape. It's actually where you know. it's where this business was actually born as well. My wife and I were tasting wine at this winery which is why we chose Fitcher today And really just recognizing like, wow, this is. this is a very familiar grape that we love, but a completely different expression.

Speaker 3:

So, to answer your question, what's interesting about traveling this region is that the so Bolzano is. the is the capital. it's the main main city in the region. If you're in Bolzano, you're probably hearing 75% Italian, 25% German. It's more Italian influenced in terms of the feel. The food is more Italian influenced, but what happens is, as soon as you leave the city center and you go out into the countryside and the surrounding areas, it flips and it becomes more Germanic. And so you're what you see is. everywhere you go, you see signs in at least two, if not three languages. So everything's in German and Italian at a minimum. You find that people are are equally fluent in both, but you also find that by traveling away from the city, you're starting to see more Germanic influence in the food, in the drinks and even in the, especially in the architecture, it feels very much like being perhaps in Switzerland or Austria rather than being in Italy, so it's a really interesting corner of Italy to visit.

Speaker 2:

Very good, i like that. That paints the picture.

Speaker 4:

It really does. I think that's a good idea. All right, do we want to hop right on into wine number two? All right.

Speaker 3:

So this is a Pinot Noir, so it's called the Matan Pinot Nero Reserva. This is Fittcher's Reserve Wine. Pinot Noir is the predominant grape in their vineyards. They have, i think they farm roughly nine different varietals, but about a third of it is Pinot Noir. So this is really kind of their marker wine.

Speaker 4:

It's not a deep, deep Pinot, it's a little bit on the lighter side. It's got some transparency to it, a lot, i would say, of transparency. It is ruby red And then on the nose it's mild, it is.

Speaker 2:

It is mild.

Speaker 4:

There's some fruit there, definitely the good bit of red fruit. Let's go ahead and taste. The acid is there, definitely, and a lot of Bing Cherry for sure, lots of Bing Cherry. It's very light. It's a very, very, very light Pinot Noir, and it's not as earthy as I had anticipated. I was expecting it to be more earthy than what it's presenting.

Speaker 3:

I always like to think of this as a very elegant wine, a very elegant example of Pinot Noir, because, to your point, michelle, it's a very light, fairly light-bodied, fairly light-footed wine, but it also has a very serious sort of core of red forest berries and red cherries fruits and a good amount of minerality. This one also the one we're tasting for your listeners we're tasting one with some bottle age. So this is 2018. So this has also been it's got a number of years of bottle age on it, so we're starting to taste it in its midlife And I think that also kind of comes through in the way that it has really sort of come together.

Speaker 4:

And after it sits on your palate for a little bit, you actually get a little bit of, a little bit more of the earthiness. It seems to bring that out even more as I'm sitting here with the finish and all It does?

Speaker 2:

It starts out, very It starts out more fruit, big cherry Yeah. And then it does get some savory notes and some earth. But I'm amazed at how light it is, not only in the weight of it but in the alcohol It's 13.5. And you can tell It's notthose big California's that you mentioned can really get up to almost 15%. They're so heavy so it weighs you down just to drink it. This does not. This is a really nice goodespecially for a hot summer day.

Speaker 2:

Well, like he was saying, it seems, like it would be very food friendly and in the hottest place in Italy. Absolutely Yeah.

Speaker 3:

I had a 15.9% Pinot Noir last week and a tasting from Oregon. So when you contrast what's happening even in this climate, I think climate change is another interesting thing to be thinking about as we think about this region, because our wines in California and in Oregon and in Washington they're just getting hotter. Our seasons are getting hotter every single year. Harvest has moved up almost 20 to 30 days in the last decade, So we're seeing our wines just attain these higher levels of alcohol with higher ripeness. So we have a contrast. Here We have an opportunity to see 13.5% Pinot Noir. That's going to be a great compliment to a meal And you can have more than a glass.

Speaker 4:

Well, and every wine has its place too, i mean.

Speaker 3:

Absolutely.

Speaker 4:

So that's also something we have to keep in mind. Have you noticed has changed with these alpine wines since we just did touch on climate change, that we were talking about how the ones here seem to be getting higher in alcohol? Have you noticed a difference over the past few years of what's going on with the climate change in the alpine region?

Speaker 3:

What's interesting in the Alps is that people are moving up. So, unlike maybe a flat vineyard in the United States, where you don't really have that option, there are opportunities to go higher and therefore basically cool the climate through altitude. So we're seeing a number of wineries, a number of vineyards that are starting to operate and purchase higher vineyards. We're also seeing a transition to the varietals. So, for example, an Alta Adage, one of the indigenous grapes, skiava or Vennach in German, is it's getting too hot in its traditional locations lower in the valley, and so it's really sort of being replaced by other international varietals that are kind of coming in to move into that terroir, because now those fruits will actually ripen now in some of these areas.

Speaker 4:

Okay. Are you seeing a difference in canopy management too? Are they trying to do something along those lines keeping more leaves on?

Speaker 3:

Yeah, especially in this region. So in Suterol they use a lot of pergola, and so you'll see so for those that aren't familiar with pergola, they actually the vine is attached to a tall wooden staff that comes out horizontally And the canopy is allowed to grow over it So it both raises the grapes higher off of the ground but also provides shading. So this is one way that they're managing a lot of especially with Skiava, some of that challenge. It's actually a very traditional method in this region. Pergola has been used in this part of Italy since the Romans, so we're starting to see some old things are new again.

Speaker 4:

And I'm assuming all of this is always handpicked because of the terrain.

Speaker 3:

Absolutely 100% of these wines that at least that we represent are handpicked for exactly the reason that you just mentioned. We've got very steep terraces, so these vineyards are. The average site in Suterol is about two and a half hectares. Two to two and a half hectares So that's, let's say, five acres is an average plot. So these are on very steep slopes. Oftentimes they're terraced. You can't get machinery in there. So really, from start to finish, these vineyards are hand tended Lots of tended by love vineyards, right down till when the fruit comes in.

Speaker 2:

In terms of the wine making itself, i'm going to assume that it's minimal intervention, small batch production I know you mentioned that your focus for Alpine architect is archetype sorry is small batch and you want to focus on the producer and the connection to the wine and generally speaking, that means minimal intervention. But tell us a little bit about the wine making.

Speaker 3:

Absolutely So. Fitcher is like a lot of our producers. They are farming organically. They are focused on very much minimal intervention. What is the grape bringing to us, what is the vineyard bringing to us every year? So these wines typically are hand harvested, they are brought in and they are typically spontaneously fermented on native yeasts. Not a lot of intervention in the winery or in the vineyard. A lot of these wineries in fact Fitcher is not, but many wineries are actually going all the way to biodynamic winemaking. So they are really thinking about the vineyard as an ecosystem holistically. And that does show up as well in the winemaking techniques. So we are not seeing additives, we are not seeing significant manipulation of these wines And what I love about that is that they are just very expressive of the terroir. What you are tasting in that glass is the terroir from which it came.

Speaker 2:

And because these are low alcohol, you have because in some growing regions, with climate impacting the wines being produced, you are getting those higher yield alcohols. So then they are coming up with methods to remove the alcohol And on the marketplace you are seeing low alcohol wines that have been manipulated to make them such, whereas these are just naturally grown in Maine that way.

Speaker 3:

Yes, and I think they go hand in hand, because the fruit is slightly less ripened than in those hotter climates, which is also maintaining that fresh acidity. So I think that freshness and acidity that comes through is a hallmark of this region.

Speaker 2:

For the same reason, So, in terms of the grape, these are two, like you said, international or well-known grapes. What other grapes might you find in this area that are a little lesser known to the international audience?

Speaker 3:

So I mentioned earlier Vannach or Skiava. So you see both the German and the English And if you are shopping in a store in the US you are probably going to see it listed as Skiava Something. If you see it you should pick it up. This is an indigenous grape from this region. It is a red grape. It is a fairly fresh footed, fairly light wine, So it is very approachable when young Great food wine and typically reasonably priced. I think 30 to 40 years ago probably the bulk of this region in terms of red was planted to Skiava. Another one that is interesting in this region is Lagrine, Another grape that you will be able to find in US stores. Lagrine is kind of Skiava's big brother, A very full bodied, very rich wine that is an excellent alternative, perhaps to like a Cabernet Sauvignon in terms of food.

Speaker 4:

I always love looking for something that I can get my Cab 11 people to try something new, so that is a good one, thanks, go grab some Lagrine.

Speaker 2:

Check it out Lagrine. That is nice to know.

Speaker 4:

I do want to know if you were traveling. We had talked about for the newbies. This is a great area to go. If you are traveling to the Alpine area, when should they consider going Time of year?

Speaker 3:

I am a big fan of spring and fall. As you know, in Europe summertime is overwhelmed. There are so many tourists And to really have the best experience and have folks be able to pay attention to, really investing time with you, spring time is ideal. There is a lot of the regions around the Alps have open sellers this time of year as well. Also, fall is. As long as you are not there at harvest, fall is a great time to go. It is just stunningly beautiful, so you can really take in the benefits of the harvest season And the food very much follows the harvest, so great food time to be in this region.

Speaker 4:

What is harvest season considered there? Because I know it can range anywhere from August to October in the state. So where is it?

Speaker 3:

Typically September and then October is when we see it, depending on the region, in the hotter valleys they are going to start at the front end of that. The cooler, higher climbs are going to be sometimes, usually in October. But you will see also in a lot of these regions, even though the winemakers are busy bringing in the fruit, a lot of the regions have harvest festivals going on, so it is a fun time to go to basically take in the food, the wine and the culture.

Speaker 4:

And if people wanted to be able to find these specific wines, where would they go?

Speaker 3:

Well, right now it is going to be us, so we are happy to bring Fittier to the United States. So if you visit our website, archetypecom, we actually are selling direct to consumer in a number of states. So long as we are in one of those places where you can legally buy our wines, we would be happy to introduce you to them.

Speaker 2:

Excellent, And tell us the price point on these two please?

Speaker 3:

So the Matan is actually probably the. This is their sort of reserve wine, so this is still is a reserve wine at about $40. So you compare that to an Oregon Pinot Noir, which is typically in that $60 to $100 range, it is, i think, a real bargain. The Sauvignon Blanc is actually at about $20. So a very, very nice price for a wine of that quality.

Speaker 4:

They are Yeah, those are great prices. Well, this is just part one of our three part series. We did not mention that up at the top of the hour in the introduction, so for those of you who are hanging in, we are going to be able to speak with Eric at least two more times to delve even more deeper into this alpine region.

Speaker 2:

Well, because there's so many, there's seven different countries. next conversation will be Austrian wines and what's going on in the Austrian wine world which we're so excited. So tell us because this was the overview what are the? I never got that answer. What are the seven countries that it touches?

Speaker 3:

Sure, yeah, the Alpine Arch includes seven countries, as you say, so we've got actually eight if you include Monaco. But in terms of wine growing, we're seeing wines from France, we're seeing wines from Switzerland, we're seeing wines from Liechtenstein, we're seeing wines from Germany, we're seeing wines from Slovenia and then, of course, Italy, which we just mentioned, in Austria. So you've got a real spectrum of languages and cultures all in this very compact area.

Speaker 2:

Excellent, okay, and stay tuned for that Austrian conversation. All right and thank you, eric, for being on with us.

Speaker 3:

It has been my pleasure. Thanks so much.

Speaker 2:

I am so glad we met Eric and found him on Instagram.

Speaker 4:

It's just it's so exciting And I want him to become real life friends, not just Instagram.

Speaker 2:

I'll progress, friends, I know yes, we'll have to work on that, okay. So first up are these two wines the Savignon Blanc and the Pinot Nero. And I wanted to say he keeps saying it so fast, it's on the label, which is how I know what he was saying The area that he was talking about, alto Adige, it's A-L-T-O-A-D-I-G-E and he said it with like an accent and it was kind of hard to. So I wanted people to know, if they're looking, how to spell it. Well, the Sudeturall was that area of Italy, but I think the Alto Adige is more what the region, the wine growing region. So if you're looking for wines from that area, that would be what you were looking for And I did want to point that out. Okay, so we want to go into our rating of these wines?

Speaker 4:

Yes, we do. And just for the yes, just for people who want to know. We do a one to five quark rating just for our own personal information. It's not quality or any of that good fun stuff. So one quark is that you would find a sink that you didn't enjoy it at all. Two quarks is that you'll finish the glass, just to be polite. Three quarks is that you'll have another glass that you found it interesting. Four quarks you enjoyed it so much you want to find a bottle because you liked it. Five quarks is you enjoyed it so much you want to buy a case.

Speaker 2:

Yep all right, let's get to it. All right, wine number one is the Savignon Blanc, and you know me in Savignon Blanc.

Speaker 4:

I do adore it and I am going to give this one a four and a half.

Speaker 2:

I really liked it. I enjoy this one a lot. I'm gonna go for as well. It has that very, very tart grapefruit but it softens at the end, whereas a lot of them, like I mentioned when we were talking, it was reminiscent of those New Zealand ones, but sometimes the ones from New Zealand are so tart and so acidic that it takes you a back. This one at the end it kind of washes it in with some of that roundness that he talked about And I like that. So it kind of gives it that lift that you need If you soften it. Is it a lift or a? I guess a softening is not a lift.

Speaker 3:

The softening is not a lift.

Speaker 2:

It takes you down a little bit Rounds it out, Rounds it out. That's what I like about it. Okay, and then Pinot Niro, which is Pinot Noir.

Speaker 4:

I personally like my Pinot Noir's a little bit more earthy. I am going to go with a three on this one.

Speaker 2:

I actually like it a lot. I'm going to go for. I think it's perfect for summer. I think it's you know, if you're somebody who wants that red wine in the summer but don't want that heavy, that we were talking about.

Speaker 4:

Oh, this is a great summer, red.

Speaker 2:

Perfect, it's light, it's bright And it has enough fruit, because in the summertime you want that little bit, but it's not bubblegummy fruit, Oh no, it's not bubblegum at all. It's that cherry and tart fruit And it does have some savory and earthiness to it, so I think I like it And Pinot.

Speaker 4:

Noir is very enjoyable. Yeah, absolutely.

Speaker 2:

And I like the fact that it's 13 and a half on the alcohol contents. Very rare to find a red that is that low. that has some good flavor to it And the roundness of it.

Speaker 4:

So if you do like the roundness and the fullness, it does still have that And it's got definitely fruit forward with a little bit of forced on the back. Yeah, okay, all right.

Speaker 2:

Well, we hope that you enjoyed this episode. We hope that you'll stick with this Alpine series and check out that upcoming episode that we talked about. We will talk about Austrian wines And we hope that, if you did enjoy this, you will share it with your wine-loving friend or family member and that you'll join us next time on Wines to Find.

Speaker 5:

Thanks for joining us on today's episode of Wines to Find. For today's show notes, visit us at wwwpicaprojectcom. Follow us on social media for bonus and live content Instagram at Wines to Find, podcast, Facebook at Wines to Find and Twitter at Wines to Find. And don't forget to join us next time on Wines to Find.

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