Cake Sagrantino is a wine you won’t forget. Sagrantino is an Italian grape from Montefalco in Umbria. The wine is often big tannins, fruitcake like and needs about two decades to mature. What you have with Cake Sagrantino is a pretty awesome view into the world of Sagrantino without having to wait two decades. They have purposely made this wine with softer tannins by leaving it on skins for an extended period.
Further helping is the fact it is already 3 years from vintage. Look for plums, blackberries, still big tannins. And a high degree of moreishness (it’s a word, trust me). Drink Cake Sagrantino from now and until 2026.
Cake Wines are small-run, high-quality, artfully-packaged wines. Everything I’ve had has been engaging and highly drinkable. Some of the wines are exceptionally good. The Sagrantino is a trendsetting wine.
The Adelaide Hills region is big and varied. It stretches from the top of the McLaren Vale all the way to the bottom of the Barossa. The sheer size means there is a big scope for climatic conditions. In the central part where its altitude is quite high, you can get some of the best sites in the world for Sparkling wine. In the slightly warmer parts of the centre, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir reign supreme with Riesling, Shiraz and Sauvignon Blanc worthy of honourable mentions.
Indigenous to the region of Umbria in Central Italy. The village of Montefalco and its surrounding areas is where Sagrantino excels. The grape is one of the worlds most tannic. Creating densely coloured and inky wines. Dark flavours, red fruits, earth and a hint of sweet spice. Until 1976 the grape was primarily used to make a thick, syrupy dessert wine. Australia has examples of Sagrantino planted in King Valley, Adelaide Hills, Barossa and McLaren Vale.
The invasion of “Sunshine in a bottle” put Australian wine on the map. The fruity, easy-going, somewhat samey wines were endearing for a short time. Then the next big thing knocked them off their perch.
This forced producers to increase quality and emphasise the distinctive terroirs of Australia. Of which, there are many. And many more yet to be discovered.
Wine is the result you get from fermented grape juice. There is proof of wine production dating back 8000 years ago. Fashions, innovations and many other factors have influenced the way wine has evolved over the years.
The wine grape is special. It contains everything you need to make grape wine except for the yeast, which lives on the outside of the skins.
Human inputs can influence the final product, including the viticulture (growing) choices. And the winemaker can shape the wine to a point too.
The best wines of the world often refer to terroir. Terroir is a French term that refers to all the climatic, geological and topographical influences on a specific piece of land. And it is true that neighbouring vineyards, grown identically, can taste noticeably different.
Fun fact; most of the colour for wines comes from the skins. There are only a handful of grapes that have red juice. Alicante is the most well known of these grapes.
By macerating the juice on the skins, the wine gains tannins, and flavours. Certain compounds change the chemistry of the wine too.
Red wines tend to have higher alcohol. More tannin and more oak flavours compared to other styles of wine. But the thousands of grapes and terroirs they grow in influence this.