Mirum est notare quam littera gothica, quam nunc putamus parum claram anteposuerit litterarum.
Gravner’s Ribolla Gialla Amfora’s copper-orange color is completely unique in the wide world of contemporary wine. There’s a luminous brightness to the wine’s appearance that defies its many years of age. Matured in clay amphorae, this pure expression of Ribolla Gialla delivers a softer approach than Gravner’s Breg (a white blend) and amazingly intense aromas of resin, pine nut, caramel, graham cracker and candied fruit. Firm structure and determined flavors mark the long close. You can drink it now or hold 10 more years.
The White Label Casanova di Neri 2014 is extraordinarily unique throughout the history of Casanova di Neri. The difficult weather of the vintage led the winemaker to blend fruit from all of the crus into one wine. For the first time since 1978 this Brunello is a blend between White Label, Tenuta Nuova and Cerretalto 2014 grapes. The black and bronze bands on the historical label remind that the last two have not been bottled in this year.
The 2014 vintage is one of the most elegant, complex and finest of ever. The color is bright red, and fresh hints of young red fruits mark the intense bouquet. In the mouth everything is perfectly balanced, from the vibrant acidity to the creaminess and the silky consistency. Tannins are extremely fine and precise. Persistent finish and endless aftertaste.
Occasionally you open a wine and a few minutes after you pour the first glass it suddenly dawns on you just how extraordinary it is, and you wonder why you didn’t buy a magnum of it. I’m of the belief that context is a momentous factor in discerning whether a beverage is merely “good” as opposed to “pleasurable” or even “life-affecting,” but those are emotional statements rather than qualitative. It takes a wine that combines both approaches for me to think of it as monumental in the grand scheme of things. And the 2015 La Monacesca Verdicchio di Matelica is one of those wines. And it’s only $20.
A burst of transcendental illumination hit me a few weeks ago after we’d stopped for drive-thru fried chicken on the way home from a really long day at work. It was one of those “jeez, it’s only May, can it already be this hot?” Dallas evenings, so we set ourselves up in the backyard (it was at the trailing edge of pre-mosquito season) and pulled a bottle of Monacesca Verdicchio from the fridge.
Now, Verdicchio is an underappreciated grape from central Italy’s Marche region that thrives in two communes: Verdicchio dei Castello di Jesi, and Verdicchio di Matelica, (that’s as in Matelica, the village, not Metalica, the band)(it’s always useful keeping the vowels straight.) The wine is crisp and fresh, yet has a pleasingly luxurious weight to it. No lack of complexity here on the palate, with an almondy-orange tinge to it, all above a minerality that’ll make it work with pretty much anything non-red meat you’d want to serve it with. Fried chicken, yes, scallops, or just bring a cold bottle along with you to Khao Noodle (Fitzhugh and Bryan) and see how well it works with the inspiring Laotian cuisine (and no corkage fee!) For me, this all pushes this wine over from “pretty good juice) over the velvet roped “extraordinary wine” territory. And for $20? A no brainer supreme!
“San Luigi is an excellent introduction to Pecchenino’s line of elegant Dolcetto wines which showcase their unique profile. The color is ruby red with violet highlights. The bouquet is fruit-forward with notes of currants, raspberries, blackberries and prunes. The flavor is well-balanced with sweet tannins and good acidity. Pairs well with appetizers, pastas, white meats, red meats and roasts.”
A refreshingly sweet summer sparkling, with light effervescence, pleasantly crisp acidity, and plenty of fruit: flavors of lime, peach, and subtle floral notes with well-balanced sweetness.
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