When I saw this wine for $8.99 at Evolution Wines & Spirits, I had to try it – the blend of 60% Merlot and 40% Corvina was too intriguing to pass up. I enjoy Merlot because it is typically a soft easy going wine, and my familiarity with Corvina was from a brief love affair with Amarone de Valpolicella. I wasn’t sure what to expect from the blend, but the result was a soft, bright, and fruit forward wine.
This blend is unusual because Veneto is more well known for its indigenous varietals than it is for Merlot. The label is also unusual. Since the wine does not follow the region’s wine restrictions, they couldn’t legally print the Italian DOC the wine was made in – but they did everything they possibly could to let you know this bottle came from Valpolicella. That said, I think that by shirking the restrictions and regulations, they have produced a fun, high-quality, everyday wine.
The wine has an inviting garnet core with a light cherry rim. The moment you open the bottle you can smell ripe raspberry and strawberry aromas and, once poured, you get a hint of mushrooms and truffles as well. On the palate you get all the fruit you smelled, but it is balanced by good acidity and wet earth notes. The only way I can describe the texture of this wine is soft and light. There are tannins present, but they are very understated; and this light bodied red rests gently on your tongue.
From a pairing perspective, this is a wine you can just enjoy on its own or one that would compliment lamb, simple beef dishes (not steak), pasta in red sauce, and mildly spicy food.