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Recommended Wine Values from Vinska Klet Goriška Brda

IMG_1564During my recent journeys through Slovenia, and visit to the Vinska Klet Goriška Brda winery, I was exposed to many excellent wines at great value points. You can read about that trip by clicking here, or here, or even here. This is an up and coming wine region, and Vinska Klet Goriška Brda is an up and coming winery. Whites excel across the board, but you can’t discount the reds. Many are rather insanely cheap. So what’s the catch you ask? Unfortunately you cannot get them all in the U.S., or in your state. Hopefully that will change going forward but right now it’s a limited selection on our shores. I’ve verified what is available where, and the retail ranges. Based on that you should be looking for the following wines. If you don’t have them near you, have your local wine shop ask their distributors to get in touch with Laureate Imports and change it. Laureate’s website is : http://www.laureateimports.com/.

There are really three lines which I sampled across the board and which find their way to the United States. These

View from lunch - Bagueri Cabernet comes from the sloping vineyard in back

View from lunch – Bagueri Cabernet comes form the sloping vineyard in back

are the low cost Avia line, the middle range and high quality Colliano line, and the premium Bagueri wines. Avia is available pretty much all along the East Coast, spreading west a bit into Texas, Louisiana and towards the Midwest. Colliano is a little more scarce, available through much of the East Coast region, although only RI and Mass currently have it in New England. Bagueri is tough, with Maryland, D.C., Texas and South Carolina stocking it. I am starting a campaign to get it into RI.

Here’s what we suggest you buy and try if you can:

Avia

The Avia line is flat out great from a value perspective. We are talking about $5-$7 a bottle here, and they all make wonderful options as an everyday house wine. There’s a bottle of the current vintage Avia Riesling in our fridge as I write this, and more in the cellar. We regularly buy this brand. The whites have been excellent, and the latest reds are really making a push as well. We recommend them all at this price point (the Sauvignon Blanc and Riesling are slight favorites), and that includes the following sampled during the trip:

2014 Avia Sauvignon Blanc

2014 Avia ChardonnayAvia SB

2014 Avia Pinot Grigio

2014Avia Riesling

2013 Avia Cabernet Sauvignon

2013 Avia Merlot

2013 Avia Cabernet/Merlot

Colliano

This was our first exposure to the winery, as we ran across Paul Monte from Laureate Imports at the Newport Mansions Wine and Food Festival in September of 2014. We were actually on our way out and decided to stop at one more table or two. We’re glad we did and the Colliano White and Red Cuvees made our top ten lists from the event Newport Wine Colliano Ribolla Jailla(see the reds here and the whites here). Our appreciation for their wines has only grown, and the recent Newport event saw them place several wines again in our Top Ten list (Top Ten Whites list here). While in Slovenia I had the chance to try most of the Colliano line, if not all. This is another line we suggest you buy and try. They’ll check in more in the $12-$15 range, but still represent great quality to price. They also have an excellent value sparkling wine.

Colliano Rebula “Peneca” – sparkler! and a good one

2012 Colliano Sauvignonasse – a local grape and a refreshing, well made wine. If you buy the 2015 in the future, I picked some of the grapes on my recent trip to the vineyards!

2013 Colliano Ribolla Gialla – bright and fruity with some body and texture

2013 Colliano Cuvee White – elegant and crazy value here, substitute for your everyday white burgundy

2013 Colliano Cuvee Red – nice fruit, medium bodied, pleasing red wine

Bagueri

The Bagueri line gets some of the best grapes. Not the best of the best, as they do make the super premium A+ red and white, as well as the Motnik, a pseudo-orange wine with an unreal herbal component. You can’t get the A+ wines here but you can get Motnik in select states. Still, Bagueri wines are extremely high quality. These will run you $25 – $30. We really recommend the Brut, Pinot Grigio and the Cabernet, but they’re all excellent.

Bagueri Brut – mix of Chardonnay and Rebula, a classic method world class sparkling wine.

The Bagueri Brut

The Bagueri Brut

2012 Bagueri SIVI Pinot Grigio – one of the best Pinot Grigios I have ever tried

2011 Bagueri Chardonnay – for the Chardonnay lover, this is a beautiful wine

2011 Bagueri Sauvignon Blanc – bright and elegant at the same time

2011 Bagueri Merlot – quite tannic this needs some time to open.

2011 Bagueri Cabernet Sauvignon – this is an excellent, medium+ bodied rich and balanced Cabernet. Think mountain fruit in Napa, or a good South African Cab. I loved it and will buy some when it gets to RI.

With Paul Monte from Laureate Imports in Newport, RI

With Paul Monte from Laureate Imports in Newport, RI

We’ll wrap this up by saying it again, these are some of the best value wines we’ve encountered in a long time. Try some and see.

A votre santé!

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