Friday, April 24, 2009

Azelia Dolcetto d'Alba "Bricco Oriolo" (2006) Piemonte

A knock-out Italian red from Azelia, a small Piemontese winery owned by Luigi Scavino, cousin of Enrico Scavino; legendary owner-winemaker of Paolo Scavino, whose exceptional wines have been winning awards for years. The two cousins share the same rigorous principles when it comes to viticulture and grape selection. Both limit grape production and in difficult vintages, the whole lot may be subject to declassification to non-cru Barolo or Nebbiolo. In addition to an outstanding Barolo, Nebbiolo, and Barbera, Azelia offers more. They own 2.5 hectares of vineyards in the township of Montelupo, long famous for its Dolcetto. From this Luigi produces his stunning Dolcetto d'Alba "Bricco Oriolo", one of the most impressive Dolcetto’s I have ever tasted. The 2006 has a beautiful deep purple (uh uh uh - uh uh uh uh - uh uh uh – uh uhhhhh) color and a fruity, plummy, blueberryish nose. 100% Dolcetto. Both cool and warm on the palate. Nice soft, velvety finish. Unoaked.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Tenuta di Ghizzano “Il Ghizzano” (2006) Tuscany

A very good entry-level Super-Tuscan from Tenuta di Ghizzano, a family run estate located in the north-western part of the Tuscany, halfway between Florence and Pisa, in the Colline Pisane production zone. The estate currently extends over approximately 865 acres with 48 acres of vineyards, 75 acres of olive groves, 370 acres of cereals, and 370 acres of woods and poplar groves. The 2006 Il Ghizzano is a blend of 80% Sangiovese and 20% Merlot that is aged in stainless steel. Intense ruby-red color. Black cherry, cola, plum nose. Nubile (my new favorite word) body. Nice balance of tannins, alcohol and acidity. The experience of this wine belies (my second new favorite word) its low price.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Bocchino Cortese dell’Alto Monferrato (2007) Piemonte

Another good everyday Italian white wine from Giuseppe Bocchino. Made from the Cortese grape which is mainly seen in the Gavi DOCG in Piedmont. The Cortese dell’Alto Monferrato DOC, bounded by the Bormida and Scrivia rivers and the Ligurian Apennines, received its status in 1979. Since then, wines from this area have made a big contribution to the expansion of Piemontese white wines. The 2007 is light, crisp, citrusy and priced for everyday drinking.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Bocchino Arduine Barbera d' Asti (2007) Piemonte

A very nice Barbera d' Asti from Giuseppe Bocchino, a family owned winery run by son Beppe and the grandchildren of patriarch Aurelio that is located in the town of Canelli in the province of Asti in Piedmont. 100% unoaked Barbera. 13.5% alcohol. Deep, ruby red color. Nice fruit on the nose. Nice body and balance. It's nice to be nice to the nice.