When a PR rep reached out to me and asked if I’d be interested in tasting a “prickly rosso” I said, “Hell yes!” It wasn’t that I expected it to be a spectacular wine, but it was something different and that’s one of the things I love about wine – exploring different ones.
By “prickly” what they mean it’s a semi-sparkling wine and the “rosso” means it’s a red wine. I’ve had a few red sparklers over the years, but I don’t come across many. And while I can’t say I’ve had any that I love, it does make for a fun wine.
This wine is a blend of 51% merlot and 49% dolcetto. Despite the fact that it’s made with dolcetto (an Italian grape variety) and it has “rosso” in the name (making it sound Italian), this wine comes from Australia.
In addition to being semi-sparkling, this is a semi-sweet wine and is meant to be served chilled.
My first impression of it is that it reminds me of Cold Duck – or at least my distant memory of it. Cold Duck is a red sparkling wine that was popular in the 1970’s. My parents would drink it every now and then and I remember smelling & tasting it (just a small sip) way back then. This wine brought back the olfactory memories of Cold Duck. Of course there’s probably just some characteristic found in sparkling red wine that came to life in both of these. To be clear, I’ve not tasted Cold Duck in over 30 years and it is just a childhood memory. I’ve heard that Cold Duck quite disgusting, which is not how I would characterize Frisk Prickly Rosso.
Blueberry, black cherry and plum aromas that are pleasant and gentle give the wine a nice nose. The palate brings a slightly frizzante mouthfeel up front with a drier tannic feeling after that. The flavor is slightly sweet with loads of ripe blueberry flavors along with some plum and other berries. It’s not what I would call an “elegant” wine, but it’s fun and tasty.
If you want to mix things up over the holidays, this would be a definite conversation starter. Cheers!
Wine: Frisk Prickly Rosso
Variety: 51% merlot, 49% dolcetto
Disclosure: This wine was received as a media sample.