It is no secret that I am a fizz fan. At a recent tasting, this was one of my favourite finds.
Firstly some background. Franciacorta in Northern Italy is a great source of fizz that, partly because of the strength of our own domestic sparkling wine selection, is still as yet relatively unknown here in Australia outside of the bar and restaurant trade. I believe that this is a sure sign though that these wines will start to appear on more shelves. Franciacorta DOCG wines are quite different to many other Italian regional appellation wines in that it revolves around French grapes, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir in the main plus Pinot Blanc, rather than native Italian grape varieties. Many also have ripeness and richness that is not achieved by the North-East Italian regions.
Giulio and Lucia Barzanò (pictured) are the current faces of the historic family winery, Il Mosnel. The name of this wine, EBB, is an amalgam of their mother’s initials and was first released in 2003.
Franciacorta wines tend to be richer in weight and texture and this wine is no exception. 100% handpicked Chardonnay from 40+ year old vines has been fermented in small seasoned oak barrels for 5 months with some malolactic fermentation for extra dimension. Being a vintage wine, it has also had at least 36 months character building, resting on lees in the bottle.
There is no doubt when you taste this wine
that it has seen full service pampering. It is a delicious and gracious fizz with an intensely fragrant nose of citrus lemon and mandarin, toffee coated cashews and custard tart with a flaky sweetly spiced pastry offset with some oyster shell savouriness. The complexity continues in the mouth where some riverstone comes in to bracket the richness.
What makes this such a hard to resist fizz is that all this richness and complexity is kept fresh by curvaceously soft but refreshing acid. This acid line extends that intense flavour experience to linger and entice another mouthful. You could make this wine a meal in itself, or you could certainly drink it with a light meal.
To discover more about Il Mosnel, click here.