Sunday, November 8, 2009

2008 Falernia Pedro Ximenez Elqui Valley, Chile

Before today, I had never been to Wine Expo in Santa Monica. I don't really know why, I've just never been there. It's a pretty wacky place. It's for the most part, all weird Italian wine and Champagne. I absolutely love it. They direct import a lot of the stuff, so it's all pretty unique. I bought quite a few interesting things, which will obviously show up here in the future. Some of them are way off the beaten Italian path, especially if your only frame of reference is Chianti, Brunello, Barolo, and Barbaresco...they're going to be interesting., and of course, probably better values too. You gotta have some love to be bringing these things in, right? Anyways, definitely worth a look.

I picked this wine up too, at the recommendation of Erik, who is far too knowledgable about all the weird Italian stuff. Seriously. Guy can drop some major cork. Anyways, this is weird for Wine Expo, which should probably tell you something about it. It's from Chile after all. Why would an almost exlusively weird Italian shop bring in something from Chile? Becuase it's really good. That's why. 9$ with a screw-cap. Pedro Ximenez, obviously, is a sweet dessert Sherry (and if you've ever had one, with all of its' raisiny goodness, you're in for a treat. I had a '79 years ago at Portalis in's still etched in my memory after all these years.). Wikipedia tells me that this version of Pedro Ximenez might not actually be the same grape, but whatever. They also use this grape to make Pisco. This is a unique and different wine, whether it's the same grape they use to make Sherry or not. Extremely floral nose, with pear accents. Racy acidity, great body (this wine is aged on the lees in stainless steel) lots of pear flavors, a good apple-pear finish, and a little bit of stone mixed in. Very much reminds me of a mutant cross between a new world Sauvignon Blanc and a Chardonnay. Absolutely worth checking out, and a great value. Delicious. A


CabFrancoPhile said...

I wonder if this grape is related to Torrontes. I've generally liked Torrontes since it's floral but with good acidity like Sauv Blanc. This sounds really similar. If only Wine Expo was closer . . . .

Jeff said...

Kinda far away from Santa Barbara huh? There might be someone else that distributes it in the US. You know what's funny? I just went to the website (, and the Wine Spectator scored it an 86. Kind of funny...It was delicious for 9$, and I bet there are a whole boatload of retailers that won't touch it because of that "problematic" score. Too bad. It was great. Went really well with fish.

Tricerapops said...

glad you got to wine expo - roberto is a good guy to get to know as well. try your hand at some of the calabrian wines they have, those have been some of the gems I've picked up there.

@cabfrancophile - haven't tried torrontes yet, but i'm hearing more and more about it (seemed to be pretty hot this summer), so i might have to check it out.

CabFrancoPhile said...

86 = wine FAIL! How can I drink so few points?!? I guess I'll go to Costco and get me a magnum of Yellowtail for $5 to chug instead!

Ah points, the insanity.

Yeah, Santa Monica is a bit far for a wine shopping trip. Woodland Hills is about as far as I'd go, I think. Italy is this exotic land of undiscovered varietals, however. Aglianico, Sagrantino, Lacrima di Morro, and these are just the ones I've heard of. Wine Expo beckons.

Jeff said...


Yeah, I don't know why I've never been to Wine Expo before. I picked up a bunch of random stuff that I'm excited to try. I will check out some of the Calabrian wines that they have next time. This time I bought some weird stuff--a Schiopettino and a couple of other things. I'm super stoked to try them.

CFP--I've had one Lacrima di Morro, a few Aglianico's, and I think one Sangrantino a couple years back. The Lacrima was interesting, but not that distinctive. (I think it's on VLW, actually). Aglianico and Sangrantino are things that I would like to explore in much more detail. It is a long drive to come to Santa Monica just for wine. That's dedication!