Moxie and I just dropped off our daughter at university in NYC. We had a last dinner with her at this amazing Italian restaurant. I dined on herb-infused papardelle with an oxtail ragout that screamed for a juicy, yet not overly tannic red. My choices included this $20 (at retail) bottle of Montepulciano. No notes were taken but from memory I recall it being the perfect choice. Red fruit driven with medium (+) acidity, a modicum of tannic grip and a medium body. The freshness of the fruit was evident as was a touch of spice, some herbs and a hint of oak. The finish was medium in length with red fruit driving the flavors. It was thoroughly enjoyed and I will be looking for more, at that price-point this 90 point wine is getting 5 stars. I would drink it with all manner of pasta until 2025. Salut….
Pasta for dinner means an Italian wine but I’m afraid this one might be a touch young. Made from Montepulciano grapes it is medium opacity with garnet hues. The nose is medium (-) in intensity and gives me aromas of red licorice, cherry, smoke, nutmeg, red plum and cherry cola. The palate is not what I was expecting- much more approachable. Dry, with medium (-) tannins, juicy acidity and medium weight body. The flavors are medium intensity with notes of cherry, cola, strawberry, nutmeg, and a hint of red plum. I don’t get the smoke component any more. The tartness of the cherry is evident on the finish, which is relatively short. I like this wine as a basic, no frills red that will serve the pairing well. It gets 88 points from me and for the entry-level price of $11 it is worthy of 4 stars. Keep a few on hand for a weekday spaghetti night. Drink now. Salut….
Tonight I am preparing stuffed shells on a bed of Kale with meatballs on the side- the classic Italian dish that this varietal was made for. It’s a bit murky in the glass and semi opaque. The nose is brimming with red fruit, rose, violets, walnut and cedar. There might be a hint of tea in there as well. The palate is dry, acidic and carries some medium tannins. The red currants, red cherry, raspberry and pomegranate notes are all there along with the florals and oak notes. It’s quite tart on the back end but that’s what I was hoping for. It’s labelled Reserva, which means nothing officially but it’s a way the producer tries to identify a superior product in this region. I did a bit of research following my tasting- it’s interesting that three different pros described three different fruit profiles. One said red fruit, one said blue and the last stated black. Either way, it got decent scores and I would agree with the 91 pointer. For $25, it’s a good Friday-with-Pasta wine that gets 5 stars from me. Drink till 2028. Salut….
Another in the latest series of inexpensive Costco finds- a Montepulciano Reserve. I think I paid a whopping $10. It shows a decent purple, pretty opaque. On the nose I get tar, black berry, licorice. On the palate it is somewhat brighter than I had imagined. Uplifting blackberry extract, star anise, mint. Sour cherry kicks in on the mid palate and makes me pucker ever so slightly. Medium tannins balance the finish off which is short to medium in length. This is the perfect wine for tonight’s burgers and tater tots. Refreshing, somewhat lighter in style yet offering a juicy cut to the fatty patties. Generally speaking this is an everyday drinker that deserves 87 points but get 5 stars from me for its value and easygoing style, perfect for summer. Salut….
I drank this over the 4th of July weekend, took notes, a picture but forgot the name. No idea of pricing either as it was my friend’s offering. It was good, but young.
Nearly black in the gas with a nose is of blackberry and tar. More black fruit, tar and earth on the initial attack. Tannic and brooding. Mid palate had some vegetal, herbaceous and acidic components. Longish finish of black cherry and tannins. 2017-2025, 90 points. I can’t give it a star rating as I don’t know the price. If you have seen this or know it’s name please comment! Salut….