That's right, even Brazil has wine and I gotta admit, it's pretty damn good.
Yesterday the Wines of Brazil, an organization created by Brazil's most contemporary wineries in 2002, hosted an importer search tasting at Platforma in NYC featuring 13 of the member wineries.
In all honesty, I knew Brazil made wine, but I didn't know what wine... I was excited to find out.
In the morning seminar, Nora Favelukes, marketing consultant for the Wines of Brazil and Argentina, lead us through the country explaining it's origins, vine covered area, size of the vineyards and the blended Italian and Portuguese background that span the country.
Here are some facts:
- Winemaking began in Brazil in 1875 by Italian immigrants.
- Most of the vineyards are located in Serra Gaucha (90%) and include the geographical indication Vale dos Vinhedos.
- Brazil's top grapes are Chardonnay & Merlot
- Brazil is a country of sparkling wine, including the grape Prosecco best known to Italy
- There are 204,012 acres of vineyard covering in Brazil
- Most of Brazil's grapes fall under Vitus Lambrusca, not Vitus Vinifera
- There are seven wine regions in Brazil and 1200 wineries
- Brazilian wine tourism is big for native Brazilians - nearly 92% of Brazilian wine is currently consumers in Brazil
- Brazilian wines are known to be fresh and fruity with moderate alcohol content
I then moved on to the whites - primarily Chardonnay - and the reds: Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Ancellota and many others.
Overall consensus? Fresh, fruity, balanced, vibrant and entirely enjoyable. Unfortunately, pricing was not available as none of the wineries at this tasting are currently imported, but most of the wines sell for about five dollars in Brazil.
Nora explained to us that due to the organizations infancy, we can not expect the wines to be every where just yet, but she did say this infant is one that consumes a lot of protein and it won't be long before there is an explosion of Brazilian wines on the market.
Personally, I can't wait ;)
Saude! - CC