Northeastern Pennsylvania is widely known to have a passion for light sweet wine. The “home-made” flows from vats up the line made by the old timers while younger enthusiasts enjoy bottles of nationaly known delicate brands purchased from local state stores. It is a known fact among professionals in the wine and spirits business that CK Fortissimo a sugary, sweet red wine which is as close to home-made as you can get, is a staple around here and the bulk of that wine’s production ( from California) is shipped to our region. Lambrusco, an exellent sweeter red from Italy has a loyal following here and it is said that as the Lambrusco market goes in Pennyslvania, so goes the national market. Yes folks, we love our sweeter wines.
The chatter from consumers these days though is about a wine which was always around but suddenly has come out from behind the curtains, Moscato. From those who love to drink dry wines to those loyal to the sweetness of their Red Cat, more and more consumers men and women, are trading into Moscato and making it their new wine of choice.
Moscato, made from the Muscat grape and few other less prominent grapes which are in the final blend, can be sourced from many places around the globe. Originally farmed in Alsace, today’s shelves are filled with Moscato from Australia, the US, Italy, France, even Canada. The wine in the bottle, no matter the sourcing, is similiar in that the refreshing, zesty sweet white wine is filled with beautiful aromas of Mothers Day flowers and Georgia Peaches. The flavors are similiar as well because the nuances of the vanilla bean and the ever so slight taste of nutmeg are present regardless of the terrior. However differences will arise as you sample through different Moscato’s. Many offer a touch of “frizzante”, a sparkling wine characteristic, others are “still” with no bubbles. There are even a few company’s today who market a red Moscato. When companies decide to engage in line extensions like adding a twist to an existing product, thats the smoke behind the fire, you now they are onto something hot and Moscato right now is so hot the sales of the wine are trending upward on a chart much like when white zinfandel came around many years ago. All indiactors are pointing north on skyrocketing sales and consumers just cant get enough of the wine.
I would like to recommend a few Moscato’s for your enjoyment. There is Gallo Family Vineyards $7.99 for a 1.5 ltr, Beringer $6.99 for a 750ml and check out the new Barefoot 4 pack $5.99.
You should always chill down Moscato and enjoy the wine while cold. Pair the wines with traditional fruit salads, steamed clams, birthday cake and fig newtons. Yes, fig newtons.
Until next time, Salute!