Posts in Italy
Trio of Adami Proseccos

The Adami family has been making single vineyard wines for 85 years. That’s remarkable considering that the region is known for its blended wines. Moreover only a decade into production, founder Abele Adami realized the superiority of hillside vineyards. It’s been all about the hills, or the “rive” in Italian, ever since.

My number one take away from this tasting is how remarkably finessed the impression of the bubbles are in all of the wines.

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Garofoli Eyes Greatness

About 12 years ago, I vividly remember tasting a non-Friulian, Italian white under $20 that was head turning. It was a Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi. I was taken aback as non-Friulian Italian whites didn’t usually excite me. Yes, there were some exceptions, but for the rest, I largely clumped Italian whites together as “high acid and lightly bitter, lemony and nutty.”

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Fontanafredda 2013 Barolo Duo

On the first night, I was surprised to find that this was an unremarkable set of wines. The next night, however, the wines began to expand in the glass and show more verve. If you can’t bear to wait, give them an aggressive splash decanting a few hours before serving them. In their current state, these Piedmont bottlings are definitely wines for a table laden with hearty fare.

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Soave Single Vineyard Wines

Rocca Sveva 2015 Soave Castelcerino: YES! This is a delightfully full-flavored wine with oodles of lemony acidity balancing the creamy, custardy palate. The beautifully scented nose starts with heather and anise then veers into Canary melon, Meyer lemon, pomelo and mirabelle plums on the rather weighty (for Soave) palate.

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Sixty Harvests + Five Native Grape Varieties = 100% Piemontese

The family-run Michele Chiarlo has been harvesting native Piemontese grape varieties for over sixty years. Today, Stefano and Alberto, the sons of Michele, run the winery. I taste the Chiarlo wines from time to time, admittedly mostly at industry tastings. So, I appreciated this opportunity to “work through” a bottle of the family’s Barbera over a leisurely dinner.

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Tremendous Value in Alto Adige

I love wines from Alto Adige. Lodged between the rest of Italy and Austria - with a sliver of its borders against Switzerland, the region’s producers craft wines with Italian exuberance and Austrian precision. Moreover, the dynamics of the Alpine duo of chilly temperatures and sunshine taste delicious in the glass.

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GOOD Vermentino

I adore Vermentino (aka Rolle, Pigato and Favorita) for its floral nose scented with honeysuckle, yellow pears and sometimes star fruit. While I’ve tasted it in its many forms for a long time, my keen interest began only about six years ago, as I noticed that many places other than Tuscany, Sardegna, Corsica and the Languedoc were making Vermentino.

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The Pinnacle of Prosecco: Conegliano Valdobbiadene

Prosecco recently has seen a tidal wave of change at every quality level. The popularity of the DOC wines has driven global markets for sparkling wines in recent years, making even Champagne sweat.

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Paolo e Noemia d’Amico

Hailing from a corner of Lazio that overlaps Umbria – almost smack in the center of Italy, this family-run estate makes wines primarily from international grape varieties. Whereas most Italian wines made from “outsider” grapes tend to be rich and boisterous, these are all incredibly graceful.


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