Sticky/Fortified

The World of Stickies and Fortifieds is a tasty one indeed.

In Australia we tend to end a meal with them. In other parts of the world they start with them! Think the delicious fortifieds of Banyul’s in Southern France, or, the Sauternes and Barsacs of Bordeaux.

You’ll find styles that made from grapes that are left to hang on the vines, concentrating their sugars, often under the influence of botrytis AKA ‘noble rot’, like Sauternes and Tokaji from hungary. Following fermentation they are left with considerable residual sugars.

You’ll often see the name ‘Late Picked’ or ‘Late harvest on the labels of these wines.

Then you’ll find fortified wines both dry and sweet like Port, Sherry, and Maderia where 75-98% ethanol spirit is added to increase the alcohol levels and in some cases stop the fermentation leaving the desired amount of sugar in the wine.

Fortifieds make some of the most unique Australian wines.

Rutherglen in Victoria is home to exceptional fortified wines that undergo long barrel ageing, including:

Topaque also known as Muscadelle after the grape variety they are made from (previously named Tokay with the name changed to meet EU naming laws).

Muscat named after the grape from which it is made also goes by the names: Moscato Bianco, Moscatel, Muscat Blanc à Petits Grains, Muscat of Alexandria and White Frontignac.

All of these are just the tip of the iceberg … which reminds me there’s Ice Wine too, made in very cool climates by letting grapes freeze on the vines pressing them to extract the concentrated juice leaving the frozen water behind! I feel for the pickers harvesting those grapes!

All of the Sticky/Fortified!

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