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THE CHICAGO WINO | June 2017


RENDEZVOUS WITH LITTLE BLUE I recently read an article making a case for why you should not be afraid of ordering wines made with grapes that you may have not heard of, or produced in countries that aren’t considered “mainstream” for wine. With over 10,000 varieties of grapes, and wine production in almost every country, chances are there are some gems out there that you’ve never heard of, let alone had an opportunity to try. When you’re at a restaurant or just walking through the aisles of your favorite liquor store, roll the dice once in a while and grab a bottle of something new to you!

Recently, I had an absolute gem from Croatia named “Little Blue” after the grape’s appearance. Interestingly, Croatia is an expert in wine making. Wine production has been attributed to the ancient Greek settlers, arriving on the Croatian coast in the 5th century BC. In other words, Croatians have been making juice a lot longer than we have in the states.

I tasted “Little Blue” by Zlatan Otok Vineyards from Dalmatia, Croatia. On the islands and the Dalmatian coast, local grape varying microclimates, and the rather harsh nature of the vineyards, leads to some highly individual wines and some of Croatia's best known. Little Blue is made with 100% Plavac Mali (Plah-vatz mah-lee) which is a cross between Crljenak Kaštelanski (Zinfandel) & Dobričić grapes – indigenous to Croatia.

This charming and super affordable wine has notes of black raspberry, tobacco, white pepper, smoke, dried fruit, and a hint of prune. Little Blue is a fun light-hearted wine which will be my 2017 #SummerJam for sure! Retailing for around $13, you can try something new for a bargain! Sláinte!

ABOUT THE WRITER

Eric McMillan, The Chicago Wino, is your source for lighthearted reviews of wine. thechicagowino.com also features links to fun tools like wine/food pairing, ideal serving temperatures, and "must try" bottles! Visit thechicagowino.com for a simple look at some complex flavors. "Like" Eric on Facebook–The Chicago Wino

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