Intriguing Piedmont Tasting – Novermber 11, 2016

Terrific tasting on Friday. We started with some bubbles from Giulio Cocchi…who knew that Piedmont made bubbles.

It was a full house and the wines showed beautifully. I have been tasting wines from Italy over that last decade or more. It is always fun to come across another grape that I haven’t heard of. In Italy, that is easy, with more than 1000 different varietals, it is almost impossible to taste them all…I think I am up to 200 or so. You’ll have to try this new grape, Rossese.

Manzone Rossese Bianco 2013 $32.99
Rossese is grown in only a few areas of Northern Italy. The wine is vinified in 500L barrels and left on lees for 12 months before settling and bottling. Floral, orange peel, and apricot are on the palate. Pairs nicely with simple pizza, chicken, and white fish.

The rest of wines as tasted are here below. Instead of the order that they were tasted, I thought I would put them in the order in which the all attendees liked most.

Aldo Conterno Colonnello Barolo DOCG 2011 $189.99
One of Italy’s most famous red wines and a mighty impressive 92 points from Wine Spectator for the 2011 vintage. Eucalyptus and menthol notes shade the cherry and leather flavors in this taut, beefy red with dense tannins that carries to the lingering finish. Pairing: MEAT! the wine is aged in Slovenian Oak for 28 months.

Cascina Sant’Eufemia Barbera d’Alba 2011 $29.99
Notes of roses, black cherry and with ageing – liquorice, tobacco & coffee begin to show. Aged in 400L French oak for 12 months’ wine goes through malo-lactic when aged to smooth out the acidity. Pairs nicely with chicken, pork and pasta Pomodoro.

Montezemolo Langhe Arneis 2015 $29.99
Another cool little grape from Northern Italy – generally found in Piemonte only. Fermented at low temperatures (15C) to retain freshness and acidity. 3 months on lees. Intense bouquet of peach and acacia flowers, chamomile, and melon. Pair with omelletes, veggie soups, stuffed squash blossoms and vitello tonnato (veal with tuna sauce).

Borgogno “NO NAME” Nebbiolo 2012 $48.99
A quiet protest by Borgogno against the bureaucracy that afflicts Italian agriculture – they use 3 cru Barolo vineyards and declassify the wine. Pairs nicely with lamb and beef. Rich, with a lush matrix of cherry, strawberry, iron and tobacco flavors, showing firm tannins and vibrant acidity.

Manzone Dolcetto d’Alba Celiegie 2014 $27.99
Dolcetto is made in steel tanks, released 22 months after harvest. it has an intense nose with blackberry and violet notes. I would say that Dolcetto is Italy’s version of Beaujolais. Pairs well with “primi piatti” and pizza.

Thanks to all those that attended. We’ll see you again at our next tasting…don’t miss out!

- Gino

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