Mixing with three cool Italians


Triade (or triad, but skipping the gang associations) is a new wine available at Waitrose.

A blend of three grapes, of course; Fiano, Falanghina and Greco this wine is an attempt to bring us something new and modern from the south of Italy.

It has been created by what seems to be a very 'international' wine business, in the positive sense of it being aware of the needs of the international wine consumer but attempting to deliver something uniquely Italian, called Orion Wines (sorry about the Flash on the link – they're not yet *fully* aware of customer needs obviously).

Like the wine, the company itself seems to have a thing for the number 3, with 3 names behind the business (a winemaker, a marketer and a logistics specialist … hmm, sounds like the beginning of a joke), and a "team of 3 full time winemakers" who go around Italy creating these wines.

This particular wine is easy to drink and pleasant, with lots of tropical fruit flavours of ripe pineapple, apricot and a hint of vanilla & honey too. As a drinking wine with more robust foods it is attractive, although it is not a "cheap" alternative coming in at over £8.50.

My only niggle would be that it is a bit TOO international. The fruit is attractive and ripe, but I don't know at all whether it speaks to me of Italy, but maybe that's my own limitations. The real south of Italy (such as this from Campania, but also Puglia and my personal favourite, Sicilia) are very different climates to the more 'classic' areas that tend to be from the centre or the North of the country. 

I love the idea of blends, but as with an increasing number of wines, I find that barrel fermentation, which was done on 20% of each of these grapes before blending, masks a lot of what makes a wine unique to that region. Unless, of course, it is the oak ageing that you are after, like in Rioja, Bordeaux, etc. In this case, the wine already seems to have a decent "roundness" (a sensation of being full bodied) from the fruit, which with a higher level of alcohol (it says 13% but could be a bit more), means that it probably didn't need any more from the oak and distracts from being a fresher wine. But I'm probably being over-critical.

In any case, it seems to be doing well, because although I only bought my bottle on Saturday, they appear to be out of stock as I write this on Tuesday. I am assuming there will be more available soon.

Three cheers for all the threes at Orion, and I look forward to trying more of their wines at some point.