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A very tasty wine from Umbria

Simply put if you need a red wine for daily drinking or a large party then look no further than the 2011 Castello Monte Vibiano Vecchio,  MonVi, Colli Perugini Rosso.  This is a Sangiovese based Bordeaux blend with a bit of bitterness and cocoa but it is very tasty.  It delivers a lot of satisfaction at only $13 per bottle.  I must thank Tim for pointing it out to me.  These wines are available at MacArthur Beverages.

2011 Castello Monte Vibiano Vecchio,  MonVi, Colli Perugini Rosso – $13
Imported by Vini Inc.  This wine is a blend of 55% Sangiovese, 22% Merlot, 15% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 10% Cabernet Franc which is fermented in stainless steel then aged in a mixture of stainless steel and oak.  Alcohol 14.5%.  This is really tasty.  For those in search of more information this a  moderately ripe wine with ripe texture, a black bitter element, and cocoa aftertaste.  It has watery acidity and a billowy structure which should support development for a year.  But why wait?  **(*) Now – 2019.

2015 Castello Monte Vibiano Vecchio,  Villa, Umbria – $10
Imported by Vini Inc.  This is 100% Sangiovese made from the youngest vines and raised entirely in stainless steel.  Alcohol 14 %.  This is a firm wine with slightly bitter black fruit, acidity, and fine texture.  *(*) Now.

A Smorgasbord of Wines!

Bloch1

2003 Domaine / Maison Vincent Girardin, Charmes-Chambertin
Wow. This is just a great bottle of aged Burg. Tannins have all but disappeared leaving a rich palate of sweet and ripe dark fruits without any of the heat of the vintage. Secondary nuances include some earth, mushroom decay and some umami that makes this wine something special.  From a producer better known for his whites, this is a lovely Grand Cru. DB.

NV Jean Velut, Champagne Blanc de Blancs
I liked it more as a wine than a Champagne. Very small, almost imperceptible bead – just a fine delicate fizz.  Golden yellow. Citrus. Bright.  Nice mineral cut.  A lot of acid to balance out the richness. DB.

Bloch2

2000 Lamborghini (La Fiorita), Campoleone Umbria IGT
A great mature Italian.  Very distinctive in that the blend (half Sangiovese/half Merlot) really packs a punch in terms of richness and depth.  Beautiful floral nose.  Some ripe red fruit  and blueberry when first sipped, turning toward older leather and spice on the mid-palate.  A big wine with a long finish.   Still youthful but developed. DB.

Two Vigorous Italian Wines

I have been having great fun drinking Italian wines this Spring and these selections are two reasons why.  The Antica Enotria was good fun because it has just enough bottle age to lose its edge while simultaneously show some mature notes.  It proved quite satisfying for both Jenn and I.  We have been consistently pleased with the wines from Sagrantino di Montefalco so I grab any affordable bottle I can find.  Tim has a good selection of slightly older more expensive wines that I cannot wait to try but he also looks out for the affordable bottles.  The Colsanto is one of his tasty, affordable selections.  Right now it is a vigorous drink with all of the components for aging.  I would buy a few bottles try to several years from now, though I imagine this will easily live for a decade.  These wines were purchased from MacArthur Beverages.

2006 Azienda Agrobiologica Antica Enotria, Aglianico, Puglia IGT – $19
Imported by Farello Wines.  This wine is 100% Aglianico which was harvested in mid-October.  The fruit is fermented in stainless steel, undergoes malolactic fermentation for six months followed by aging for eight months in oak barrels.  The Italian nose had aromas of red fruit and sweaty leather.  In the mouth the black fruit was quite linear, taking on some wood box flavors along with very juicy acidity.  The dry black fruit was matched by the drying tannins on the teeth, lips, and cheeks.  The flavors were tart in the finish with a long aftertaste of low-lying wood and mature notes.  Pleasing in a rustic manner.  *** Now-2017.

2008 Fattoria Colsanto, Sagrantino di Montefalco, Umbria – $18
Imported by Siema Wines.  This wine is 100% Sagrantino sourced from vineyards in Montarone on soils of clay and lime.  The fruit is harvested at the beginning of October, fermented in stainless steel, then undergoes malolactic fermentation in 70% wood casks and 30% stainless steel.  The wine is then aged for 15 months in wooden casks followed by a further 12 months of aging in stainless steel tanks.  The slightly heady nose reveals aromas of very subtle candied rose.  In the mouth the stoney red fruit immediately starts with integrated drying tannins.  Cool blue fruit comes out, which is lighter in weight, as the inside of the lips dry out and the tongue salivates from underneath.  There is some midpalate warmth, a bit of a racy personality, and some sweetness to this young wine.  *** 2015-2022.

We Try the Sagrantino Grape from Montefalco

Montefalco is located between Florence and Rome in the region of Umbria.  The red wines of this area may be made from the grape Sangrantino.  This grape is generally found only in the towns surrounding Montefalco.  While there are different views about its origins it was first specifically mentioned in a document from 1598.  Grown for centuries on the local hillsides, the Sagrantino grape was typically used to make a sweet passito wine or fortified wine.  In the 1990s several winemakers started producing a dry red wine which was complex and long-lived.

The Italian Appellation system includes table wine: Vino da Tavola (VDT),  Indicazione Geografica Tipica (IGT), along with quality wines from specific origins: Denominazione di Origine Controllata (DOC), and Denominazione di Origine Controllata e Garantita (DOCG).  These apellations require increasingly specific vineyard origins, permitted grape varieties, and  production requirements.  Today there are several different types of wines made around Montefalco including several Umbrian IGT and a Montefalco Sagrantino Passito DOCG.  The two red DOC and DOCG certified wines are Montefalco Rosso DOC and Montefalco Sagrantino DOCG.  Montefalco Rosso DOC is an earlier drinking wine made from 60-70% Sangiovese, 10-15% Sagrantino, and 15-30% Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot.   Montefalco Sagrantino DOCG is comprised over 500 hectares of vineyards and accounts for 6% of the Umbrian wine production.  These wines must be made from 100% Sagrantino which is aged for 30 months, 12 of which must be spent in wood.

I really enjoyed both of these wines.  The Cantine Novelli, Montefalco Rosso DOC is definitely a more approachable, earlier drinking wine.  The Colpetrone, Montefalco Sagrantino DOCG ratchets up the flavor and concentration. While it is quite enjoyable with just a few hours of air this wine will certainly age and develop for many years to come.  I believe both of these wines represent a good introduction to two styles of wine from Montefalco and are good value for the price.  Both of these wines, along with several others from Montefalco, are available at MacArthur Beverages.

2006 Cantine Novelli, Montefalco Rosso DOC – $17
Imported by Red Ink Imports.  This wine is a blend of 70% Sangiovese,15% Sagrantino, 7% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 8% Merlot.  The fruit is sourced from a vineyard on soils of clay with a pebble/gravel mixture.  The varietals are fermented separately, undergoes malolactic fermentation, with 15% aged in oak barriques.  Ont he second night there was a light nose of jammy, red fruit.  In the mouth the red fruit had a bit of lift before making way to cool blue fruit with a racy middle.  The flavors were slightly jammy in the finish, with stone-like flavors, and gutsy acidity which picked up.  This was fresh and enjoyable.  *** Now-2017.

2007 Colpetrone, Montefalco Sagrantino DOCG – $26
Imported by Vias Imports.  This wine is 100% Sagrantino which was aged for 12 months in French oak barriques.  The fruit is sourced from 35 hectares of vineyards on soils of limey soil with clay deposits at 350 meters.  This slowly opened over several hours.  There were focused, black fruit with air, stoney ink flavors, and a hint of licorice.  Towards the middle there were concentrated red fruit flavors, leather notes, and a little wood box to this wine where power lurks.  The finish revealed lifted, blue fruits which were racy and inky.  This young wine has an expansive finish with fine ripe tannins and some warmth.  ***(*) Now-2022.

Kobrand’s Tour d’Italia

September 21, 2011 Leave a comment

The Occidental

Thanks to Phil and Gary I was able to attend Kobrand’s Tour d’Italia held in Washington, DC.  This was the sixth of ten stops for the tour and was located in the Occidental Grill & Seafood.  I arrived shortly after the event started and found that a line to check in had already formed!  The event was well-organized with all of the winemakers and Kobrand employees in a cheerful mood.  I worked my way through most of the wines then went back a second time with Tim.  I tasted most of the wines but there were a few I neglected to write any notes for so I have left those out of this post.  For detailed background information please refer to the Kobrand website.

Tenuta Sette Ponti

Giovanna Moretti

I rather enjoyed these wines.  The Crognolo and the Saia offer good value while the Oreno and Maharis ratchet things up in both taste and price.

2009 Tenuta Sette Ponti, Crognolo, Toscana IGT
This showed dark red berries, herbs, and racy flavors in an enjoyable wine.  The flavors turned darker and harder in the finish, though young, it drank well. Not Rated.

2009 Tenuta Sette Ponti, Oreno, Toscana, IGT
This was even more aromatic than the Crognolo with blackberry, racy, ripe fruit, and a dark profile.  Nice. Not Rated.

2009 Tenuta Sette Ponti, Poggio al Lupo, Maremma IGT
This was fruitier with red berries, less structure, and a more forward, early drinking style.  I preferred the Crognolo. Not Rated.

2007 Feudo Maccari, Saia, Nero d’Avola, Sicily
This was the most aromatic thus far with redder fruit, good acidity, and underlying structure.  Young, strong value.  You may find an earlier post about this wine here. Not Rated.

2006 Feudo Maccari, Maharis, Sicily
I rather liked this, with obvious red fruit and a dark berry cork, quite enjoyable.  The addition of Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah create a different wine than the Saia.  There is a fair amount of tannin but lively acidity keeps the wine polished.N ot Rated.

Tenute Silvio Nardi

Emelia Nardi

The Rosso di Montalcino was a good start but I kept circling back to the regular Brunello di Montalcino, it is worth seeking out.

2009 Tenute Silvio Nardi, Rosso di Montalcino DOC
This was youthful with cherries, confection, well-integrated acidity, and fine tannins that left a spicy note.  Quite pleasurable. Not Rated.

2006 Tenute Silvio Nardi, Brunello di Montalcino DOCG
A strong earthy nose, dark red berries, complex, and structured so cellar for several years of development.  Quite captivating. Not Rated.

2006 Tenute Silvio Nardi, Manachiara, Brunello di Montalcino DOCG
This was quite different from the regular Brunello.  A delicate perfumed nose gave way to redder, brighter fruit with fine, powerful tannins.  It was not as complex as the Brunello. Not Rated.

Fernando Pighin & Figli

I never buy Pinot Grigio so it was a pleasure to drink these two completely different styles.
2010 Fernando Pighin & Figlio, Pinot Grigio, Friuli Grave DOC
A light straw color.  A medium aromatic nose of ripe fruit then an about-face as zesty, fresh, floral fruit, and acidity fill the mouth. Not Rated.

2010 Fernando Pighin & Figli, Pinot Grigio, Collio DOC
This was less aromatic with a darker nose.  Full of citrus and pineapple it was riper in the mouth with good texture. Not Rated.

Ambrogio e Giovanni Folonari Tenute

Giovanni Folonari

I tasted all but the two least expensive reds.  This is a strong portfolio all around.  I enjoyed the strong value in the Villa Nozzole and the high quality with the Tenuta La Fuga Brunello di Montalcino and Il Pareto.

2010 Tenuta Campo al Mare, Bolgheri Vermentino DOC
This had a light nose, flavors of crisp citrus, herbs, and good texture.  Quite nice.N ot Rated.

2009 Tenuta del Cabreo, La Pietra Chardonnay, Toscana IGT
This had a dried grass nose.  The green fruit immediately delivered flavors of toast, more austere than the Vermentino but it had a creamy texture and a long aftertaste. Not Rated.

2007 Villa Nozzole, Chianti Classico DOCG
This was a great start to the red with its earthy nose.  Soft red flavors, balanced, easy to drink. Not Rated.

2007 Tenuta di Nozzole, Chianti Classico Riserva DOCG
This does not have th earthy characteristic of the Villa Nozzole.  Instead it is driven by red berries and reveals the structure from its upbringing. Not Rated.

2009 Tenuta Campo al Mare, Bolgheri DOC
Assuredly more modern with ripe black fruit, good texture, and approachable. Not Rated.

2007 Tenuta di Nozzole, La Forra, Chianti Classico Riserva DOCG
This had flavors of dark red berries, a bit of forest, a powerful wine, definitely structured for age. Not Rated.

2006 Tenuta La Fuga, Brunello di Montalcino DOCG
What can I write?  Lovely, complex, red fruit on the nose and in the mouth, tight but well defined components, cellar this for several years before trying again.  You may find my post on the 2004 here. Not Rated.

2008 Tenuta di Nozzole Il Pareto, Toscana IGT
Fairly complex with rose, spices, and herbs in this medium to full-bodied wine.  The mixture of black and blue fruits are still young and though it will develop for several years, it is quite approachable right now. Not Rated.

The Wines of Piero Incisa

Some Wines of Piero Incisa

The Turlo is a good value with quality elevated at Guidalberto and Barrua.  The Guidalberto is a strong alternative to the more expensive Sassicaia.

2009 Tenuta di Salviano, Salviano di Salviano, Umbria IGT
Notes of toast, creamy green fruit with some citrus. Not Rated.

2009 Barda, Pinot Noir, Patagonia, Argentina
A curve ball!  Strawberries, a little spice/texture, forward profile. Not Rated.

2009 Tenuta di Salviano, Turlo’, Lago di Corbara IGT
This has ripe, red, tooty-fruity nature, in a rich but soft wine.  A crowd pleaser. Not Rated.

2008 Tenuta di Salviano, Solideo, Lago di Corbara IGT
This had a more distinct, pure fruit nose with Merlot notes as compared to the Turlo. Not Rated.

2008 (?) Tenuta San Guido, Guidalberto, Toscana IGT
The ripe, red fruit is balanced, youthful, a sweet spice component, and easy to drink.  An excellent alternative to the Sassicaia if you need a more affordable wine. Not Rated.

2008 Tenuta San Guido, Sassicaia DOC
There were dark red fruits and a tad more complexity than the Guidalberto.  Well balanced, remarkably approachable. Not Rated.

2009 Agricola Punica, Montessu, Isola dei Nuraghi
No detailed note, just that I preferred the Barrua. Not Rated.

2007 Agricola Punica, Barrua, Isola dei Nuraghi
Fun stuff, stoney blackberries, lithe, and almost rich but tempered by refined tannins and acidity. Not Rated.

Michele Chiarlo

Alberto Chiarlo and the Author

I enjoyed started with the Barbera d’Asti Le Orme but was really captivated by the La Court.  Of the Barolos I preferred the Cerequio over the Cannubi.  But I am no Barolo expert so I am interested in your opinion.

2007 Michele Chiarlo, Gavi Le Marne DOCG
I found clean flavors of apricot and apple in this crisp wine.  Not my style. Not Rated.

2009 Michele Chiarlo, Barbera d’Asti Le Orme DOCG
This had red berries, good acidity, and some interesting flavors in the finish.  Young but easy to drink.  Good value. Not Rated.

2007 Michele Chiarlo, Barbera d’Asti Superiore Nizza La Court DOCG
This was quite engaging.  The interesting nose of dark berries and blackberries makes way to red fruit in the mouth, the acidity comes out as the enjoyable tannins develop.  There is a long earthy finish, and interesting aftertaste.  Good stuff! Not Rated.

2007 Michele Chiarlo, Reyna Barbaresco DOCG
This was more subtle with a lighter nose that leaned towards dry red fruit and tea notes.  There are very fine, assertive tannins.  A nice wine that I would age because the current profile would complement bottle aged notes. Not Rated.

2007 Michele Chiarlo, Barolo Tortoniano DOCG
Young, brambly fruit! Not Rated.

2007 Michele Chiarlo, Barolo Cerequio DOCG
An adolescent with powerful, young tannins.  I found a bit more spice and texture fruit and ultimately felt there is more complexity here. Not Rated.

2007 Michele Chiarlo, Barolo Cannubi DOCG
These tannins were more intense and drying.  It tilted towards primary fruit and floral notes. Not Rated.

Tim and the Author