Grape Republic - Bailey A Yamagata Red Wine (2020)
Grape Republic's 'Bailey A' is a light bodied red that is both soft and fruit driven but also carries deeper coffee and cola inflected notes. A nice blend of...
Grape Republic's 'Bailey A' is a light bodied red that is both soft and fruit driven but also carries deeper coffee and cola inflected notes. A nice blend of refreshment and mystery. The fruit notes on display are ripe dark cherry and blackberry. The nose is primarily cola nut and cacao, along with the fruit, and the palate is gentle and sweeping, wafting through layers of fresh electrifying fruit, pillowy tannin, and fertile black earth soil. Overall, it's not a deep and complex wine, but I really like how the rich fruit notes are carried along by a bit of mystery and earthiness. The balance is a perfect mix of fun and funky. (And we know Major Tom's a wine junkie.)
Grape Republic is located in Nanyo-shi, Yamagata, Japan. They grow their own grapes, as well as work with neighboring farmers, and take pride in the micro-climate that they reside in. The specific Nanyo-shi environment allows for sufficient acidity and sweetness to make high quality, terroir-driven wines. Grape Republic made their first vintage in 2015 and finished construction of their winemaking facility in 2017. Their wines are made in Spanish amphorae and stainless steel tanks using zero additives and only native yeast fermentation. Their wines are not fined nor filtered before bottling.
100% Muscat Bailey A from Yamanashi prefecture. 20% whole bunch grapes were spread in the bottom of the tank. The rest was destemmed. The wine was skin fermented for 8 days then pressed. Aged in stainless steel vat for 9 months.
The grape, Muscat Bailey A, was bred by the grandfather of Japanese winemaking, Kawakami Zenbei, in the 1920's. He was after a wine grape that was disease resistant and could withstand the snowy winters, while still producing enough ripeness and acidity to make delicious wine. Now, Muscat Bailey A is one of the most widely planted wine grapes in Japan. For those interested in the genetic heritage of Muscat Bailey A, well, it's complicated and I'll just leave you with grapes names such as Black Muscat, Bailey, Triomphe, and two American grapes called "Extra" and "Big Berry".