Tenuta San Leonardo
Terre di San Leonardo
Tenuta San Leonardo
Trentino-Alto Adige, Italy
Why We Like It
Forget what you know about Cabernet and Merlot. This red is medium bodied, elegant and fresh- not at all like the Bordeaux-blends you might know now. However, Tenuta San Leonardo has been making wine in the Dolomiti mountains for over 1000 years, so don’t let a preference for full-bodied reds deter you from this.
What We Taste
Red cherries, blackcurrant, bramble bush and wild herbs backed by refreshing acidity. This wine is both very classic (in its approach to winemaking and the grapes used) and very atypical (for what we know about the varieties), so I think an atypical wine pairing is ideal for this wine.
What We Smell
Wild raspberries, sage, and rosemary. The nose on this wine smells like the open mountainside on which the grapes were grown. The delicate herbal aromas give way to a more animalistic, earthy nose when decanted, however, which I would recommend for this wine.
When looking for a wine to pair with Chambar’s infamous Lamb Tagine, we look for a fruit-forward red with soft tannins and spicy notes. The Terre di San Leonardo has all that, and I love pairing a lighter (and less tannic) red with a rich dish like Tagine. With its aromatic honey-fig broth, the wine feels refreshing in contrast to the intense flavours of the dish. Order the perfect pairing from Chambar HERE.
Trentino-Alto Adige is a mountainous region where Italy, Austria, and Switzerland collide, and their cultures intertwine. As its name suggests, it is made up of two areas: Trentino (mainly Italian- speaking) and Alto Adige (mainly German- speaking). The combination of cultures and traditions is what allows this region to produce a wide variety of wines including Pinot Grigio, Chardonnay, Gewürztraminer, and Schieva. You’ll never get tired of trying wines from this region.
San Leonardo’s history dates back 1500 years, where the wine cellar was once a monastery that gave shelter to the destitute. However, the history doesn’t stop there! The estate then acted as headquarters in both world wars before finally serving as a fully operating winery and vineyard. San Leonardo is today owned by the Guerrieri Gonzaga family who have taken advantage of the historical grounds and perfected the Bordeaux- inspired blended wines. It’s not just the crazy history, but it is the 6 months in Slovanian oak, 24 months in French oak, followed by a year of bottle ageing that makes San Leonardo’s wines so spectacular.
Wine Vikings Team Tip*
This wine has it all. A perfectly balanced blend like this one deserves to be enjoyed fireside. This looks like a long day of skiing in Whistler and returning back to your Airbnb to warm up by the log burning fireplace. Forget the hot cocoa, this bottle of red is calling your name. What’s for dinner? Any juicy meat- especially beef or lamb.
*This tip does not necessarily reflect the thoughts or opinions of our featured Wine Viking but is instead how our team in the background likes to enjoy these wines, along with a few simple hacks.