Friday Sips

Italian Wine Friday Sips Tasting
Today July 26, 1:30 - 6:30
Umbria, Piedmont, Friuli & Puglia

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$16.99 BTL./$203.88 CASE

Never one to be short of an opinion, these days my belief is that the three finest producers in Montefalco are Paolo Bea, Antonelli and Perticaia. Unlike the other two luminaries listed, Perticaia is a young estate, only founded in the 90s. Meaning plow in Umbrian dialect, the name chosen by owner Guido Guardigli is very apropos given this property’s commitment and devotion to the soil and environment of Umbria.

What I am most taken with this wine is the refusal to add in any French varietals such as Merlot, Cabernet or Syrah; it is all from native varietals. 70% Sangiovese, 15% Sagrantino & 15% Colorino, this wine combines traits of Mikhail Baryshnikov and Mike Tyson. Spice-laden aromas that possess penetrating ripe black and red berry fruit, full-frontal exotic spice and underlying balsamic and underbrush aromas. Polished and debonair, but with excellent thrust and dynamic strength. Modern-tinged without ever losing its sense of place, this flamboyant, spice-bomb thrills from the instant that it is poured. Have with roasted meats, maybe with a touch of spice. Drink through 2025.

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$19.99 BTL./$239.88 CASE

The region of Puglia is quite vast and there is a definite divide in styles with the wines from the northern and southern portions of the region. In the south, Negroamaro, Primitivo and Salice Salentino rule the day but in the north around the small city of Lucera, it is the Nero di Troia grape that drives the wines.

Like the Motta Del Lupo, Agramente is a DOC wine from the specific region of Cacc’e Mmitte di Lucera and has considerably more stature and complexity. 60% Nero di Troia, 15% Sangiovese, 10% Montepulciano and 10% Bombino. The Nero and Montepulciano give the wine a smoked violet/plum aspect white the addition of Sangiovese brings about fresh red tones. Bombino is a white grape and this is what brings vibrancy to the wine. Full flavored yet having excellent poise, this wine carries to the Italian dinner table so well. A few years back I had it with a piece of halibut smothered in a tomato caper sauce and it worked so well. Also something to pair with meat driven pasta dishes.

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$25.99 BTL./$311.88 CASE

The heart and soul of Vietti's Barbera D'Alba Tre Vigne is three apex Barolo villages (Castiglione Falletto, La Morra & Monforte) with a bit coming from other villages in the Langhe all to make an impressive blend. More and more we are seeing more finesse to this wine as it is only sees barrique for malolactic fermentation followed by aging in large botti, all of which has enhanced the wine in this warm vintage that is very favorable to Barbera.

The 2017 is very on form. Outstanding refined and sophisticated aromas of prominent blueberry, violet, subtle licorice, strawberry, herbs and dusty earth follow through to a smooth, graceful, suavely textured palate that spreads out on the sultry finish that hangs around and flirts well after the wine is swallowed. This downright delicious wine can be enjoyed with a wide range of foods from roasted pork to barbecued chicken to risotto jacked with mushrooms. It is also sneaky with how it will age. Drink and enjoy this offering over the next 5-7 years.

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$25.99 BTL./$311.88 CASE

Friulano (the grape formerly known as Tocai Friulano) is a white grape native to the Northern reaches of Italy believed to originate in the Veneto region, a neighbor of Friuli. However, it is in Friuli where this grape thrives beautifully. After World War II (as well as previous eras that Friuli was occupied by various empires), it was Livio Felluga who was one of those responsible for restoring viticulture to the region. Up until his passing in 2016 at the age of 102, he and his family have been tireless promoters of the region as well as their superb wines.

One of the benchmarks of this varietal, the 2018 combines concentration with succulence. Scents of cassis leaf, peach pit, apple, lime, perfumed mineral from the sandstone in the soil and saline step forward at various times as this complex white opens in the glass. Virtually viscous but contradictory as there is ample structure and vibrancy which then folds inward and becomes very linear and food friendly on the long, drawn out and elevated finish. Truly a grand scale Italian white wine it pairs beautifully with cured ham, Proscuitto San Daniele in particular. It will also marry up nicely with grilled prawns as well as grilled eggplant or asparagus dishes.