Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Grace Wine

This is the first time I experienced wine (other than Sake) from Japan. Grace Wine is perhaps the most reputable of the over 200 Japanese wineries. It started in 1923 and is now fronted by young 5th generation winemaker Ayana Misana.

The signature indigenous grape is Koshu. The 2014 Grace Kayagatake wine is the 100% free run entry wine. It is transparent, light, relatively low alcohol, very pure and delicate, tasting of white flower and a little citrus (90 points).

The most serious wine in the line-up of about seven wines is the 2012 Grace Toriibira Vineyard Koshu. It is a single 1.6 ha vineyard wine from a high altitude property (450 metres)  with clay and volcanic soils. The wine is clear and very pure, with flower aromas and minerality on the palate. There is some length on the finish. If you wanted to make a comparison, this would have some similarity to a good Pinot Grigio (92 points).

If you have ever seen the fruit displays in Japanese stores, you will appreciate the care that would be taken in the sorting process. Not one bad berry would ever enter the tanks.

I find it interesting how local wines often are the perfect fit for the local cuisine, think Sangiovese and pizza, or Bordeaux and red meat. Koshu is absolutely ideal with sushi.

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