Posts Tagged ‘Morellino di Scansano’

Diverse Italian wines

I admit to being behind in posting my tasting notes.   In an effort to clear some backlog, you will find nine notes from recent Italian bottles in order of preference.  I would try anything rated *** or **(*).  These selections are priced between $15 and $25 at MacArthur Beverages which is quite an affordable range.

2015 Rainoldi, Inferno, Valtellina Superiore – $25
Imported by Winebow. Alcohol 13%. A darker flavored wine with a ripe vein in it. There is some stemmy, supportive structure but it becomes rounder towards the end. The underlying black fruit picks up the chewy tannins to good effect. Satisfying. *** Now – 2024.

2010 Vigne Marina Coppi, Castellania, Colli Tortonesi – $25
Alcohol 14.5%. This wine has power to the black fruited, slightly puckering flavor. There are some astringent tannins and a sour tilt in the finish but this is thoroughly enjoyable. *** Now – 2029.

2015 Pertimali, La Querciolina, Montecucco Rosso – $17
Imported by Le Storie Wines.  Alcohol 14%.  Dark fruited with some red flavors as the slightly lively acidity comes into play.  There is a crisp edge to the mineral flavor but this is a robust wine with cola-like verve before the drier, baking spiced finish.  **(*) Now – 2029.

2015 Conte Guicciardini, Massi di Mandorlaia, I Massi, Morellino di Scansano – $19
Imported by Michael R. Downey. Alcohol 14.5%. There are dark, floral berry aromas on the nose. Rounded flavors of mixed red and blue berries are almost earthy with a stone note. There is fine structure and watering acidity framing the wine. The fruit focuses in the finish. **(*) Now – 2023.

2014 Tolaini, Al Passo, Tuscany – $18
Imported by Banville Wine Merchants. Alcohol 14.5%.  An herbaceous edge before the ripe, blue and black fruit.  The flavors are carried on a dry, acidic edge which makes it fresh in the middle.  This is attractive in a cooler, tannic way.  **(*) Now – 2024.

2010 Villa S’Anna, Chianti Colli Senesi – $20
A maturing wine with firm aromas of cherry and soil. In the mouth it is focused with firm, black cherry flavor and watering acidity. It is still structured but in an enjoyable, integrated way. It wraps up with dry, earthy soil notes. **(*)  Now – 2024.

2017 Coppo L’Avvocata, Barbera d’Asti – $15
A good nose. In the mouth is lively red fruit, red tart fruit with black fruit underlying it. This is acidity driven with a mineral zip at the end. Flavorful with ripe hints of rolly polly stones and some heat. **(*) Now – 2022.

2016 Benanti, Etna Rosso – $20
Imported by RWK Imports. This wine is a blend of 80% Nerello Mascalese and 20% Nerello Cappuccio. Alcohol 13.5%. A good nose with floral perfume. Robust nerello flavors greet but they are a bit simple. The wine is clean and while it retains focus it does reveal some weight which becomes integrated with the dry structure and acidity.  ** Now – 2024.

2016 Leone de Castris, Villa Santera, Primitivo di Manduria – $17
Imported by Winebow.  Alcohol 14.5%.  Sweet vanilla and bakery aromas.  In the mouth are blue fruits with a rounded edge.  This is a ripe wine, bordering on sweet but fortunately becomes more mineral and balanced towards the finish. ** Now – 2021.

From Rondinella White to Sangiovese, Four Good Wines

There has been no shortage of good Italian wines lately.  First up, the 2012 Zyme, From Black to White, Il Biano, Veneto has a significant proportion of Rondinella White in it, something not possible before 1999.  Rondinella is typically a red variety used in Amarone.  When a branch of a vine mutated to provide white grapes it was carefully cultivated for eight year until there was a parcel of vines.  This wine was really well done and reminiscent of an attractive orange-wine or very light red wine.  If you can only afford to purchase one of the wines featured in today’s post, this is the one.   The 2011 Tenuta Ghiaccio Forte, Morellino di Scansano clearly has depth but also needs a few years in the cellar.  Its quite good.  I do not think (and I reviewed my notes) that I have had Aglianico as forward drinking as the 2011 Azienda Agricola San Salvatore, Aglianico Jungano, Paestum.  There is a nice touch from the minerals and earth so why not enjoy this now?  The 2006 Castello di Cacchiano, Chianti Classico is a proper wine for aging.  I suspect it also reflects the strength of the vintage and the then newly banned inclusion of white fruit.  Stick this in your cellar and do not even bother broaching a bottle for a few years.  These wines were purchased at MacArthur Beverages.


2012 Zyme, From Black to White, Il Biano, Veneto – $23
Imported by Banville & Jones.  This wine is a blend of 60% Rondinella white, 15% Kerner, 15% Gold Traminer, and 10% Cross Manzoni.  Alcohol 13%. The color was a light straw.  The nose was rich with aromas of white fruit, sweet nuts, and eventually a waxy note.  In the mouth were rounded flavors of nuts, pastille-like flavors, and there was even a tingling sensation on the tongue.  This wine was creamy with floral notes, and lively acidity but picked up weight and some grip.  It had a long aftertaste with lots of texture.  It had hints of orange-wine character and with one’s eye closed, that of red wine.  *** Now-2015.


2011 Tenuta Ghiaccio Forte, Morellino di Scansano – $20
Imported by Cantiniere Imports.  This wine is 100% Sangiovese aged for 10 months in Slavonian oak.  Alcohol 14.5%.  The nose revealed a good depth of black and red fruit.  In the mouth the flavors were more black with long, textured tannins, good depth, and some polished wood in the finish.  This will be a good wine and while air certainly helped, I would definitely cellar this a few years.  **(*) 2016-2026.


2011 Azienda Agricola San Salvatore, Aglianico Jungano, Paestum – $28
Imported by Banville & Jones.  This wine is 100% Aglianico which was fermented in stainless steel then aged in a combination of tonneau, barriques, and stainless steel tanks.  Alcohol 14.5%.  This was surprisingly ripe and forward with blue fruit and ripe, sweet tannins.  The tannins turned dry with minerals before the earthy aftertaste.  There was lots of flavor, not huge depth, but strong appeal.  *** Now-2020.


2006 Castello di Cacchiano, Chianti Classico – $26
Imported by Masciarelli Wine.  This wine is 100% Sangiovese which was fermented in stainless steel then aged for 30 months in French oak.  Alcohol 13.5%.  The nose revealed pleasing aromas of cherry and strawberry candy.  In the mouth were wood box notes and cherry fruit.  Though the flavors were light and dry it managed to expand through the mouth with good acidity, leaving a minerally finish.  The wine remained firm over a few nights and clearly needs further age. **(*) 2016-2024.