This list includes a Spanish variety that is quite popular in the Philippines.
No one needs an excuse to partake of good wine, we know. But today being National Wine Day and all, we thought of getting the recommendations of an expert. Christopher Urbano, the managing director and chief sommelier of Winery.ph, came to mind.
Here, he shares some of his favorites from the past decade, what they could be paired with, and their tasting notes. At any rate, we’re pretty sure we had you at “wine.”
Chrismont La Zona Pinot Grigio 2018
“An Australian wine, the Chrismont La Zona Pinot Grigio is crisp, refreshing, and very balanced. You’ll get a good taste of white peach and pear, as well as grapefruit flavors. This makes for a great aperitivo, or served with your appetizers on these hot summer days—especially if said appetizers include prawn and scallop.”
Claudia’s White Reserva 2017
“This is a rich, white wine—I would even say that it’s dynamic and powerful. It has intense aromas, and its flavors are charged with citrus, with a good amount of spice and acidity. You could drink this by itself in the middle of the week, but it’s a super match for cream-based dishes, poultry, and seafood, as well as a variety of hors d’oeuvres.”
“Fun fact: Rioja is one of the top-selling wine varieties in the Philippines. Filipinos love Rioja, and this is a classic, properly-aged 2014 vintage. In its perfect drinking window, I would say that this is probably the best-value Reserva that there is right now. It’s very layered, with flavors of smoky blackberries and touches of tobacco. Very satisfying.”
“South Africa is a very underappreciated red wine region, and this wine is proof that it produces world-class wines. It’s on par with wines from Australia and the USA, which are typically twice the price—in other words, this is outstanding value for money. Its profile as a Cabernet Sauvignon falls somewhere between the powerful ones from Napa Valley and the more subtle takes from France or Australia. This is one bottle of wine that I genuinely enjoy and get for myself for special occasions, or when I’m planning on having a good rib-eye steak.”
Terrazas Reserva Malbec 2018
“This is a solid choice for drinking in the middle of the week. This Malbec comes from the Uco Valley in Argentina, where the high altitudes help give it a very layered profile. It’s fruity and juicy, with delicate tannins and dark chocolate notes. I’d pair this one with roast pork or a tomato-based pasta.”
All of these wines are available from Winery.ph. Purchases of 12 bottles and more are subject to discounts, and delivery within Metro Manila is free for a minimum purchase.