Wine Selections – Raise a Glass to Celebrate Love

Valentine’s Day weekend is upon us. You may be looking for a wine to pair with a special meal, give as a gift, or to raise a glass in a virtual toast with your galentines and valentines. We have a list of wines that are accessible and can be purchased at a wide variety of price points. One thing is for certain. These choices will please even the most discerning wine drinker.  Cheers! 

Séptima Malbec 2018 –This 100% Malbec from Argentina is Valentine’s Day ready with deep-red hues and rich aromas of red and blackberries blended with notes of coconut and vanilla resulting from aging in oak barrels. The wine is aromatic and sensual with great acidity and round tannins. It pairs exquisitely with your special meals that include grilled lean meats, pasta with tomato sauce, and semi-hard cheese. (SRP $15) Visit: Bodega Septima.

Balletto 2019 Rosé of Pinot Noir – French style Rosé from California? Yes, it exists! That’s the style winemaker, Anthony Beckman and owner, John Balletto, love to drink. It’s “a Rosé made with purpose,” as Anthony likes to say, using 100% estate-grown Pinot Noir specifically farmed for Rosé production. Why? Because the fruit from these vineyard blocks offers bright acidity and soft tannins. It’s fun and lively, replete with savory guava, watermelon and lime that combine with a light, delicate texture. The balance is heavenly with just enough acidity and weight to make you crave the next taste. (SRP $20) Visit: Balletto Vineyards.

Aperture Cellars 2018 Bordeaux Red Blend – A stunning expression of their most complex Bordeaux blend, this wine is composed of one-third Cabernet Sauvignon, one-third Merlot and expertly balanced by the remaining blend of Malbec, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. The tannins are well integrated and the texture elegant and silky, making this a wine that is drinking beautifully now and will continue to reward with cellaring. (SRP $55) Visit: Aperture Cellars.

Enate 2015 Crianza – The countryside of Somontano is defined by a rural stretch of foothills and mountains in the northeast corner of Spain. It is a beautiful area that is well recognized for producing fine wines. The Enate 2015 Crianza, comprised of Tempranillo and Cabernet Sauvignon, has a vibrant red color that is ideal for the festive holiday season. The wine has an intense complex aroma and is rich in spicy notes against the wine’s background of ripe red fruit with a balanced tannin structure. It’s long finish makes it ideal to be served with a robust charcuterie platter that includes hard cheeses, smoked fish, and meats. SRP $15 Visit: Enate.

Whitecliff Pinot Noir 2019 – This vintage is one of the best that they have produced in decades due to the fact that the fruit was in perfect condition. White Cliff Pinot Noir 2019 has exceptional color and intensity with aromas of dark cherry, boysenberry, and chocolate. The wine is a nice match for a charcuterie platter or with entrees such as roast duck and lamb dishes. (SRP: $20). Visit: White Cliff Wines.

Mionetto Prosecco Rosé DOC – Mionetto, one of the world’s favorite Prosecco producers, is thrilled to announce the launch of their Rosé DOC, now available. This is one of the first Prosecco Rosés to hit the U.S. market following the approval of Prosecco Rosé DOC production by the Prosecco DOC Consortium in May of 2020. With continued growth in both the Prosecco and Rosé categories, this new offering has something for everyone: bubbly lovers, longtime Prosecco loyalists, and rosé devotees can rejoice. With both Prosecco and Rosé in the name, a new category has emerged. (SRP $15). Visit: Mionetto.

Meyer-Fonne Gentil d’Alsace 2018 – Alsace Riesling is one of the most widely planted varieties in the region and is known for its zesty and dry flavor profile. With structured acidity and notes of lime, white flowers and stone fruit, Meyer-Fonne Gentil d’Alsace 2018 is a crowd-pleasing sipper that will complement a wide variety of foods from smoked salmon to roasted pork. (SRP $18). Visit: Meyer-Fonne.

Marina Cvetic Montepulciano d’Abruzzo Riserva 2016 – The Marina Cvetic Montepulciano d’Abruzzo represents an intense and remarkable expression of Abruzzo’s main variety. The 100% Montepulciano d’Abruzzo comes from eight of the estate’s top parcels and represents the summit of what Montepulciano can achieve. This mono-varietal wine, according to Masciarelli’s production philosophy, ferments in stainless steel and matures in French oak for over a year and then continues its refinement in bottle. Today, it is one of the most representative Masciarelli products, celebrating numerous awards received over the years, including the prestigious “World Top 100” list by Wine Spectator. The aromatic texture ranges from mint, fresh thyme, hints of underbrush, red fruits, olive tapenade, grilled herbs, aniseed, and dark chocolate. It is full-bodied and extremely versatile with food to share with family and friends. (SRP $32) Visit: Vintus.

Marina Cvetic ISKRA 2015 – Fruit of pure Montepulciano grapes harvested from a single vineyard in Controguerra (province of Teramo), this wine tells with its dark ruby red color tones, velvety softness and intense aromas of ripe red fruit, one of the most interesting terroirs of the entire Abruzzo region. This gentle slope of the land enjoys a full Mediterranean climate. The manual harvest, carried out in the first half of October, is followed by the fermentation in steel tanks at controlled temperature and a first 12-month aging in French oak barrels. Afterwards, at least 24 months of aging in the bottle follows. Dense and full-bodied, it has vivid notes of blackberries, plums, blueberries, and black currant. The wine is a match for roast lamb and stewed meat or for rich and spicy Asian foods. It is among the Marina Cvetic line of wines, which Gianni Masciarelli created for his wife. Pair with stews, cured meats, and a variety of cheeses and entrees. (SRP $38) Visit: Vintus.

Tussock Jumper Chenin Blanc 2020 – This 90 point (Blue Lifestyle, Fall 2020) rated wine is off dry in style with flavors and aromas of lime zest, guava, and tropical fruit, along with a crisp, elegant minerality and finish. It is made with minimal cellar intervention, with the grapes for this wine coming from select vineyards in the Helderberg and Paarl regions of South Africa, as well as bushvine and trellised vines from the high slopes of the Du Toitskloof mountains. Each parcel was harvested at optimum ripeness and vinified separately. After brief skin contact, free-run juice was transferred to the tank for cool temperature fermentation using select yeast strains. The wine spent an additional 120 days on the lees prior to final blending.  Careful canopy management was exercised so as to encourage even ripening and sun exposure. A late winter with good rainfall and warmer than usual temperatures contributed to an early bud break. Cooler temperatures returned in August, which slowed bud break and contributed to a later growing season. Made from 100% Chenin Blanc grapes, it is the perfect wine for Caribbean fare like shrimp pasta, poultry, grilled pork chops, or vegetable dishes. (SRP $11.99) Visit: Tussock.

Two Angels Petite Sirah 2018 – Two Angels Petite Sirah is very dark purple in color and boasts savory aromas of blackberry pie, plums, currants, vanilla, and hints of toasted herbs.  The flavors mimic the aromas on this well-balanced Petite Sirah.  It is a big wine whose supple mid-palate belies the weight, structure, and powerful, firm tannins. The finish is long and luxurious. This is the fourth vintage of Two Angels Petite Sirah to come from the highly-acclaimed Red Hill Appellation in Lake County.  Serve at room temperature with robust dishes, including beef, venison, turkey, game birds and semi-soft or hard cheeses. (SRP $26.99) Visit: Quintessential Wines.

2019 GEYSER PEAK Sauvignon Blanc – Clear and bright pale straw in the glass, the 2019 California Sauvignon Blanc has a fragrant aroma, displaying grapefruit and grassy characteristics as well as a touch of melon. As it crosses your palate, crisp, lively acidity with citrus flavors including lime, lemon, and tangerine. This is a beautifully balanced wine with crisp, clean acidity and a lingering finish. Serve this wine chilled, pairing it with sushi, grilled fish, chicken or other white meats, Asian dishes or Greek salads. (SRP $13.99) Visit: Quintessential Wines.

JUSTIN Vineyards & Winery 2019 Rosé – The 2019 JUSTIN Rosé is a dry, aromatic, refreshing wine that reminds us that while rosé is great on a hot summer day, it is also a versatile wine worth reaching for all year long. A Rosé of mostly syrah that is whole cluster pressed and fermented like a white wine, it shows a beautiful salmon color in the glass with bright red fruit, crisp apple and subtle herbal notes. It’s a perfect match for a wide variety of pairings or just on its own and is a wine that is meant to be enjoyed at the table, poolside, beach-side, outside, but especially with someone by your side. (SRP $20) Visit: Justine Wine.

Landmark Vineyards 2018 Overlook Chardonnay – The 2018 Overlook Chardonnay was crafted from 42 separate blocks of grapes sourced from premium Sonoma County vineyards. Working closely with grower partners throughout the growing season in such prestigious appellations such as the Petaluma Gap, Sonoma Carneros and the Russian River Valley gives winemaker Greg Stach the high-quality fruit this bottling deserves. Enjoy this award-winning Chardonnay with family and friends. (SRP $27) Visit: Landmark Wine.

Top photo: Bigstock

About Marina P. Kennedy (39 Articles)
Marina Kennedy currently writes for Broadwayworld.com, JerseyBites.com and the Hemlock News in Pennsylvania. She likes to do articles and blog about the culinary scene, theatre, and travel. Marina and her husband Chuck enjoy the rich cultural experiences of the metropolitan area. She is absolutely delighted to contribute to Woman About Town.