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WTN: Various Italian wines


futronic
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I haven't posted notes in a while, so here are some Italian wines that I've had over the past couple months:

2000 Marchesi Incisa della Rocchetta Barbera d'Asti Superiore Sant'Emiliano

This is a Barbera produced by the same group that makes Sassicaia.

Deep garnet colour; aromas of tar, earth, cherries, and rose petals. Medium-bodied, fresh tasting, with bright tar, and cherry fruit. Nice finish, ~30s, with a slight peppery, juicy note. 87 points (03/06/2004).

2000 Allegrini Palazzo della Torre

75% Corvina, 20% Rondinella, 5% Sangiovese.

Deep ruby /garnet colour. Pretty nose of violets, black cherries, earth, and spice. Medium-bodied with candied fruit and cherries. Well-integrated tannins. An easy drinking wine with a moderate finish of cedar and cherries. 87 points (03/15/2004).

It's definitely a food wine, in my opinion. I would drink this wine over the next 2-3 years. Hopefully it puts on a little weight and gains complexity on the palate.

I was discussing this wine with Marilisa Allegrini when she poured it for me. I said I liked the wine, but preferred the La Grola over the Palazzo della Torre and explained why - it was a little more rich and would be better with roasted meats and risotto.

Her response was interesting - she said I have a more European palate in that the La Grola is more popular in Europe, while the Palazzo della Torre is much more popular in North America (the US in particular). Approximately 60% of the production of Palazzo della Torre goes to the US, with only about 20-25% staying in Italy.

2002 Maculan Dindarello

From Veneto

100% Moscato

~ $14CAD/375mL

Honey-gold colour. Aromas of petrol, honey, lemon and orange peel. Medium-sweet, medium-full bodied with apricot, honey, and lemon/orange replays from nose. Good 30s finsish. 87 points (03/15/2004).

NV Bellavista Franciacorta Cuvee Brut

From Lombardy

90% Chardonnay, 10% Pinot Grigio and Pinot Nero

Loose bead, pale yellow colour. Aromas of granny smith apple. Good mouthfeel, but seems restrained. Apple and yeast notes dominate. Short finish. 82 points (03/15/2004).

1999 Barone Ricasoli Casalferro

Dark ruby-red/garnet colour. Aromas of vanilla, black cherry, tar, earth, and raisin. Palate replays from nose, but adds hints of mocha. Moderate length finish, ~ 30s. Made from Sangiovese and Merlot. Hold for another year or so. 90 points (02/20/2004).

1998 Podere Poggio Scalette Il Carbonaione

100% Sangiovese (Lamole clone)

Not decanted, but allowed to breathe for an hour. Medium-dark ruby red to a rose rim. Aromas of tar, vanilla, grilled meat, violets, mint, black cherry, fenocchio, and a bit of raisining. Medium-full bodied, silky smooth, refined wine with tar, black cherry, mocha. Well integrated tannins, and a long, lingering finish, ~ 45-50s with mocha and cherries. Drinking wonderfully now! 93 points (02/20/2004).

What a wonderful wine! I hope I get the opportunity to visit Juri Fiore and the Scalette estate when I am in Italy in a couple months.

2002 Braida Moscato d'Asti Vigna Senza Nome

Pale yellow colour. Sweet nose with petrol, honey, lychee and pine needles. Medium sweetness, very easy to drink. Palate replays from nose and ha a moderate finish. 88 points (03/15/2004).

2000 Castello di Ama Chianti Classico

Medium-ruby red. Aromas of tart red fruits (cranberry, red chery), violets, and earth. Medium-bodied, very soft, with red fruit on the palate. Moderate finish, ~20-25s. Decent Chianti, but nothing special. 86 points (03/15/2004).

NV Zardetto Prosecco di Conegliano Brut

Pale yellow. Very aromatic, with apples, pears, cream, biscuit. Off-dry, with pear and cream; soft-mouthfeel. Moderate-finish, ~30s. This is a really tasty summer sipper that just screams for lounging on a patio. 87 points. A steal at $16CAD per bottle (03/15/2004).

1999 Allegrini Amarone

75% Corvina, 20% Rondinella, 5% Molinara.

Dark garnet colour, almost opaque. After 10+ minutes of swirling, aromas of cedar, cherry, alcohol, flowers, raisins, cigar box, and vanilla appeared. Full-bodied, rich wine still in a very primary stage. On the palate, bourbon vanilla bean, cedar, dark chocolate, black fruits (figs), fenocchio. Very present tannins, but there is a nice creaminess to the wine. Long, lingering finish, 60+ seconds with notes of black figs. Easily needs 10 years, a fact confirmed by Marilisa Allegrini who was in attendance at the tasting. 93+ points with potential to add at least a few more with age. (03/15/2004).

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2002 Maculan Dindarello

From Veneto

100% Moscato

~ $14CAD/375mL

Honey-gold colour. Aromas of petrol, honey, lemon and orange peel. Medium-sweet, medium-full bodied with apricot, honey, and lemon/orange replays from nose. Good 30s finsish. 87 points (03/15/2004).

NV Bellavista Franciacorta Cuvee Brut

From Lombardy

90% Chardonnay, 10% Pinot Grigio and Pinot Nero

Loose bead, pale yellow colour. Aromas of granny smith apple. Good mouthfeel, but seems restrained. Apple and yeast notes dominate. Short finish. 82 points (03/15/2004).

First, the Dindarello. Now there's a wine you don't see a note on very often. I'm a big fan of Maculan's stickies. Sadly, the last one I had of this wine was fizzy -- see the secondary fermentation discussion in the Carbonation thread.

Next, Bellavista. I must confess to not being a big fan of their wines. Similar somewhat to your experience, it's not that there's necessarily anything wrong with them. It's more that they are serviceable, but unremarkable. And I have trouble with that fat-bottomed bottle in my racking.

We cannot employ the mind to advantage when we are filled with excessive food and drink - Cicero

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Brad,

I agree. I really enjoy Maculan's dessert wines as well. The Torcolato is wonderful, and I've yet to taste the Acininobili. I'm still mulling over buying a bottle, but trying to restrain myself at $70CAD/375mL for the '99.

Sorry to hear about the off bottle of Dindarello.

My thoughts about Bellavista are also similar. Nothing wrong with the wine, but I'd rather spend the money on something else.

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Thanks for the notes, futronic! Were all of these wines were sampled at a tasting or were some purchased?

Also, what is a "sticky"? Sorry to ask you two such a neophyte question, but I've seen this written a couple of times recently on the site and am interested to know what it refers to. Thanks.

JJ Goode

Co-author of Serious Barbecue, which is in stores now!

www.jjgoode.com

"For those of you following along, JJ is one of these hummingbird-metabolism types. He weighs something like eleven pounds but he can eat more than me and Jason put together..." -Fat Guy

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Also, what is a "sticky"? Sorry to ask you two such a neophyte question, but I've seen this written a couple of times recently on the site and am interested to know what it refers to. Thanks.

Sticky is a wine geek slang term for dessert wine.

We cannot employ the mind to advantage when we are filled with excessive food and drink - Cicero

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jogoode,

My pleasure. I purchased these wines (the Barbera a few months ago, the Casalferro and Il Carbonaione a couple years ago), and the rest were at a tasting.

2000 Marchesi Incisa della Rocchetta Barbera d'Asti Superiore Sant'Emiliano

1999 Barone Ricasoli Casalferro

1998 Podere Poggio Scalette Il Carbonaione

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Thanks, guys.

Is every wine you drink with dessert considered a sticky? I tried passito for the first time yesterday and it impressed me as very sticky -- and also not particularly interesting -- the way a late harvest wine served for dessert does not.

JJ Goode

Co-author of Serious Barbecue, which is in stores now!

www.jjgoode.com

"For those of you following along, JJ is one of these hummingbird-metabolism types. He weighs something like eleven pounds but he can eat more than me and Jason put together..." -Fat Guy

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Thanks, guys.

Is every wine you drink with dessert considered a sticky? I tried passito for the first time yesterday and it impressed me as very sticky -- and also not particularly interesting -- the way a late harvest wine served for dessert does not.

I've seen and heard it applied to wines served with dessert regardless of origin. Regarding the passito you had, I'd be curious to know more about it. I'm finding many moscato passito wines of late that are positively lovely, but I'm sure there are many that aren't.

We cannot employ the mind to advantage when we are filled with excessive food and drink - Cicero

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I was given a small glass of the wine with biscotti. It was extremely sweet. I can't say I know anything else about it. Sorry, Brad.

JJ Goode

Co-author of Serious Barbecue, which is in stores now!

www.jjgoode.com

"For those of you following along, JJ is one of these hummingbird-metabolism types. He weighs something like eleven pounds but he can eat more than me and Jason put together..." -Fat Guy

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  • 4 weeks later...
Brad,

I agree. I really enjoy Maculan's dessert wines as well. The Torcolato is wonderful, and I've yet to taste the Acininobili. I'm still mulling over buying a bottle, but trying to restrain myself at $70CAD/375mL for the '99.

Sorry to hear about the off bottle of Dindarello.

My thoughts about Bellavista are also similar. Nothing wrong with the wine, but I'd rather spend the money on something else.

jay/fut - the LCBO recently dropped the prices on many of those maculan's. whichever was previously 89$ is now 64$ (i think the 97 acininobili but don't quote me). anyways, served one at passover dinner (accompanied by lemon meringue pie, coconut/apricot macaroons, and a seriously gooey mont d'or) it was a big hit so i put another into the 'cellar' - do sweet wines like this age to any great effect (beyond the 7 years it's already had) ?

"There never was an apple, according to Adam, that wasn't worth the trouble you got into for eating it"

-Neil Gaiman

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Good to have you over here, EH. The Acininobili available at Summerhill is the 1999. I have been tempted to pick up a bottle or two since it's on sale, but I'm off to Italy in a month, so all my wine purchases are on hold.

My understanding with the Acininobili is that it's like a top quality Sauternes, and will likely last 20 years (if you can keep your corkscrew off it that long).

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