My Kind of Wine: Mionetto Il Ugo Elderflower Cocktail

IL UGO!Review of Mionetto “Il” Ugo Elderflower Cocktail: In  a word, get yourself some!

Many of my favorite wines have a good back-story, and here’s one: Earlier this spring, I was taking a walk with my good friend Tamara. This adventuresome woman is a bonafide vagabond; in fact, she left Amerique profonde two years ago, ostensibly for the summer, and didn’t return for nearly 24 months. Life just kept happening elsewhere, in London, Iceland, Amsterdam, and Austria and other choice places.

After her long overdue return in May, we were walking through a local park, catching up, when we came across some beautiful elderflower bushes. She stopped to smell the fragrant, white blooms.

Beautiful elderflower blooms. Who knew you could eat them? Well, Europeans, that's who.

Beautiful elderflower blooms. Who knew you could eat them? Well, Europeans, that’s who.

“Ah…” she mused. “These take me right back to Austria.”

She went on to explain that in Austria, cooks often lightly batter and deep fry the blooms for a snack. Or, she said, they boil the blooms with sugar and lemons to make an elderflower syrup. which they often mix with Prosecco, that wonderful sparkling wine that’s made in the not-so-far-off region of the Veneto in Italy.

Suddenly, a light bulb went off in my head. “I think I have something like that at home,” I said.

Yes, you could make your own Elderflower Syrup but the Il Ugo product is much, much easier!

Yes, you could make your own Elderflower Syrup but the Il Ugo product is much, much easier!

Because I’m a wine writer, wineries sometimes send me wines for consideration. I knew that in my tasting line-up, there was a bottle of something with elderflower flavors in it.

Indeed—we went home and there was this beautifully frosty and luminous light-green bottle of Mionetto Il Ugo Elderflower Cocktail waiting for us. I chilled it up and invited her over for some apéritifs later in the day.

One sip of it, and she said “Yes. This is it.”

I loved it too. Here’s why:

• The softly sparkling wine is utterly refreshing. While the fact sheet accompanying my sample suggested serving the drink on ice, we sipped it from Champagne flutes, no ice. It was heaven.
• The added flavors of elderflower, pear, peach, and citrus were delightfully subtle and lightly sweet—and there’s something about a lightly sweet sparkler that’s especially refreshing in summer.
• The wine is only 8% alcohol—lift-inducing without doing you in for the night. Perfect for day-drinking, too.
• This retails for just $12—an affordable way to treat yourself to something truly special.

The only thing I don’t like about it is that it’s hard to find. I can’t locate any here in Amerique profonde, but if you see any out and about—and my description leads you to believe you’ll like this kind of wine—grab a bottle. And let me know what you think!

PS: With this posting, I’m starting a new, occasional series called, “My Kind of Wine,” in which I detail a great wine that I’ve found. What makes this different than all the other wine recommendations out there? Hopefully, you’ll get to know my tastes, and you’ll know whether my tastes jibe with yours. Rather than reviewing for everyone, I’ll just review for us. More on this later! Also read my disclosures about wine samples and such, if this interests you. 

Photo of elderflower blooms by Staticgirl via Flickr.
Photo of steeping elderflowers by Swan Scott via Flickr.

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