Showing 145–156 of 184 results

  • Tenuta di Biserno Il Pino di Biserno 2019


    “The 2019 ll Pino di Biserno is gracious and elegant. The style is much fresher and understated than before. Silky tannins wrap around a core of dark fruit, mocha, spice, licorice and incense. Dark and vibrant in the glass, the 2019 is another winner from Lodovico Antinori. Drinking window: 2022-2031. 92 points

    Lodovico Antinori’s new releases are terrific. They show a move towards a slightly more understated style than in the past, as is common at many properties in Maremma. The wines are still quite opulent and generous, but without the heaviness that marked some previous releases. I find the wines compelling and delicious.”

    Antonio Galloni, Vinous (07/22)

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  • Tenuta di Trinoro Campo di Magnacosta 2013


    “The 2013 Campo di Magnacosta is the first single-vineyard Cabernet Franc made at Trinoro. Dark, powerful and juicy, the 2013 offers plenty of depth and intensity, but less in the way of varietal character. It will be interesting to see if that develops with more time in bottle. Today, the Magnacosta is a work in progress. Drinking window: 2016-2023. 90? points.

    Andrea Franchetti continues to make some of the most compelling wines in Italy. Readers will find much to admire in these new wines from Franchetti’s Tenuta di Trinoro, including a superb rendition of the flagship wine. The Cupole, the estate’s second label, is once again one of the very best wines in its price range. In addition to the 2013s from Trinoro, I also tasted a number of 2014s from barrel. Those wines point to a surprisingly strong vintage at Trinoro. This year, Franchetti debuts his new Pinot Noir project, Sancaba, which is reviewed here separately. Lastly, Franchetti’s 2014s from Passopisciaro, his Mount Etna estate, were positively riveting when I tasted them from cask last summer.”

    Antonio Galloni, Vinous (03/16)

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  • Tenuta di Trinoro Le Cupole 2019


    “The 2019 Le Cupole offers a beguiling mix of immense red-fleshed fruit intermingled with sweet floral, spice and citrus notes that lend brightness. Medium in body and silky, the 2019 is one of the most restrained, polished Le Cupoles I can remember tasting. In that sense, if is the total opposite to the much more opulent 2020. 40% Cabernet Franc, 37% Merlot, 13% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Petit Verdot. Drinking window: 2024-2034. 92 points

    Andrea Franchetti is no longer with us, but his spirit is very much alive in these new releases from Tenuta di Trinoro. I usually don’t have a chance to taste two vintages side by side, but doing so was really quite instructive. In general, the 2020s are quite rich and potent, while the 2019s offer greater aromatic intensity and more finessed tannins. The three Cabernet Franc selections are so individual and expressive, while the flagship Palazzi and Tenuta bottlings are blends that are in a sense more complete. Speaking of the Tenuta, the estate has decided to push back the release of that wine until next year, which is why a review does not appear here. Last, but certainly not least, the Le Cupole captures all the personality of the top wines but at a more modest price. More than anything else, though, what I love about these wines is how distinctive they are. Andrea Franchetti crafted wines of uncompromising character throughout his remarkable career. These new releases perfectly embody that vision.

    Antonio Galloni, Vinous (07/22)

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  • Tenuta San Leonardo 2016


    “Another year in bottle has added unexpected depths and dimension to the 2016 San Leonardo. lt wafts up with an alluring bouquet of smoky black currant and plum skins, complicated by savory herbs, hints of white pepper and fresh tobacco. Its hard chiseled edges have formed into smooth contours now, velvety yet youthfully dense, washing mineral encased dark red and black berries across a core of brisk acidity as a combination of saline-minerals and grippy tannins add tension toward the close. This finishes incredibly long yet also structured, begging for time in the cellar, as hints of licorice and earth tones grumble under an air of inner violet florals. The potential within the 2016 San Leonardo is off the charts, yet it will require a good amount of time to come fully into focus. Bury your bottles deep. Drinking window: 2026-2040. 96 points

    It’s hard to understand just how unique the wines of San Leonardo are, until you see just how unique their location is. Traveling north through Trentino, up from Lake Garda, the valley narrows, with vines that seem to span out directly from the autostrada on both sides and run uphill until they meet the forests at the top. After exiting the main road, and after a few very sharp turns, you arrive at the gates of San Leonardo. Over 1000 years ago, the main building was a monastery, yet for the last three centuries it’s been the home of the Marchesi Guerrieri Gonzaga family. The detailed history of the estate was explained in my piece, “The Grand Vin of the North: San Leonardo.” However, to experience the sight of it is something totally different. The oldest vines of the estate, trained using the pergola system, grow in deep sandy soils on the hills surrounding the winery, soils that were deposited by the Adige River over millennia. As you move further uphill (or shall I say up the mountain), you find stony soils of carbonate rock and limestone, with current plantings using the Guyot training system. This is where Anselmo Guerrieri Gonzaga, the current managing generation, believes that the future of San Leonardo exists, especially due to the onset of global warming. The winery continues to plant at higher elevations, with four new hectares in place, and another three-hectare vineyard being constructed. At this time, the property consists of a total of 30 hectares, all of which are farmed using organic principles. On the topic of change, another progression here is the slow introduction of tonneaux, as opposed to barrique in the aging of San Leonardo’s top reds. However, even the barrique aging consists of a maximum of 20% new wood. It’s going to be very interesting to watch this property progress over the coming years. They’ve already established themselves as one of the top producers of northern Italian Bordeaux blends. San Leonardo also delivers a ridiculous amount of value through their second wine, the Terre di San Leonardo, and their old-vine, varietal Carménère, while very limited, just keeps getting better and better. Frankly speaking, it’s great to witness such a long-lived traditional estate having such an open-minded and progressive view.”

    Eric Guido, Vinous (06/22)

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  • Travaglini Gattinara 2018


    Review to follow

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  • Travaglini Gattinara Riserva 2016


    Review to follow

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  • Travaglini Gattinara Tre Vigne 2016


    Review to follow

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  • Vallone di Cecione Chianti Classico 2017


    “The 2017 Chianti Classico is a jewel of a wine. Fresh, forward and easy to like, the 2017 has so much to offer. Sweet red cherry, plum, mint, spice and wild flowers are pushed forward, but more than that, it is the wine’s freshness and structure that stand out most. This is such a gorgeous wine, and a real sleeper in 2017. Drinking window: 2020-2037. 93 points”

    Antonio Galloni, Vinous (08/19)

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  • Aldo Conterno Barolo Bussia 2017


    “The Poderi Aldo Conterno 2017 Barolo Bussia shows a dark but busy quality of fruit that speaks more to the power of this hot vintage than it does the nuanced side of Nebbiolo. In this respect, the wine is quite typical of the 2017 growing season. It takes a while before the wine finds focus in the glass, but it does slowly come together to reveal broad layers of dark cherry, cassis and plum. There is some tannic tightness that leads to sour berry. A bit awkward at this young stage, it needs a few more years of cellar age to flesh out and reach balance. Drink: 2023-2038. 92 points”

    Monica Larner, Wine Advocate (06/21)

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  • Antinori Pian delle Vigne Brunello di Montalcino Riserva Vignaferrovia 2013


    “This wine reaches into the deep end of the Brunello intensity spectrum. The 2013 Brunello di Montalcino Riserva Pian delle Vigne Vignaferrovia is a compact and robust expression of Sangiovese that presents a thick core of dark fruit followed by savory tones of tobacco, spice and cured leather. You might mistakenly conclude that this vintage offers a more international interpretation of Montalcino (with 30 months of oak aging), but I don’t necessarily believe this to be the case. The wine is instead accurately reflective of Sangiovese with more textural richness, sunshine and structure locked within. This Riserva embodies a sense of place more than it does winemaking style. Drink: 2020-2035. 94 points”

    Monica Larner, Wine Advocate (01/19)

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  • Biondi-Santi Brunello di Montalcino Riserva 2012


    “Luminous garnet red. Perfumed nose of orange peel, cinnamon, sour red cherries, strawberries, talcum powder, and old fine leather, plus sneaky hints of slightly air-dried berries (not surprising, given how hot 2012 was, even taking into consideration that Biondi-Santi is one of the first estates to pick each year). Then juicy and dense with a silky mouthfeel to the flavors of red berries, blood orange and spices. Finishes long and silky now, but this specific Brunello Riserva was especially austere in its youth and so the estate decided to release it one year later than usual for sale. The wine carries an extra label “Dedicato a Franco Biondi Santi” (dedicated to Franco Biondi Santi) who passed away in 2013; CEO Giampiero Bertolino explained to me that everyone at the estate believed this wine was a real snapshot of Franco and the Brunellos he most enjoyed drinking, and so it was decided to dedicate it to him. Actually, there’s an air-dried quality to this wine that is absolutely enchanting, if in my opinion not altogether typical of Franco’s work. No matter, it’s one of the top three Brunello Riservas of the 2012 vintage. Drinking window: 2024-2036. 96 points

    There is a great deal of news coming out of Montalcino’s oldest, most storied estate. In fact, ever since the sale of Biondi-Santi to the EPI group in 2016, the estate has been slowly undergoing changes, with an important focus on the study of their individual vineyard plots. World famous terroir expert Pedro Parra has been brought on as a consultant and among other things, he has proceeded to burrow 33 holes on the estate property to help analyze the characteristics of the property’s various soil types. Based on the results and his indications, twelve specific plots will now be followed closely over the course of the next few years with microvinifications carried out from each one. Clearly, the goal is to gain in precision thanks to the information gathered on each plot and potential wine. The estate has also added small oak 10 and 15Hl barrels (from Garbellotto, the historic Italian barrel supplier) and cement tanks to their vinification and aging arsenal. Also, the estate is planning to uproot part of the older vines that are virus-affected and are no longer producing the quality or volume of grapes they would like (however, they have kept all the extremely old vines planted in the 1930s near the estate). Biondi-Santi has also bought 6.6 hectares of Sangiovese vines designated for Brunello production, an amphitheater in the southeastern sector of Montalcino not far removed from the estate (the vines grow at the same height as at Il Greppo and are south east facing). CEO Giampiero Bertolini told me that in order to decide where to buy, they evaluated sites at 23 different estates (twelve of which he went to see personally). And so Biondi-Santi owns 33 hectares of vineyards today (only of which a little less than 2 hectares are of Rosso di Montalcino-only designated vines). In this light, it is not without interest that Biondi-Santi is thinking of making a little more Rosso every year, given that there is apparently a huge request for the wine and they don’t really make that much currently (only 20,000 bottles/year of Rosso versus 60,000 of the classic Brunello and 15,000 of the Brunello Riserva). And in keeping pace with modern times, the estate has also been working on distribution and labeling; for example the word “Riserva” now appears on the front label, beginning with the 2012 Riserva just released this year (the word “Riserva” was previously only found on the neck label). Last but not least, the estate has also begun bottling magnums (believe it or not, Biondi-Santi had never done so before; in the 2012 vintage, 500 were made as an initial celebratory launch, but in the future, more will be produced). Now that may seem like a lot of changes all at once, but Bertolini underscores everything is being done slowly and carefully, or in his words “… evolution without revolution”.”

    Ian D’Agata, Vinous (04/20)

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  • Elena Fucci Titolo Aglianico del Vulture 2015


    “The 2015 Aglianico del Vulture Titolo is gorgeous and geared toward the lover of all things earth and mineral. Here I’m finding a blend of ripe cherry, violets, crushed stone and ash, giving way to hints of dried orange peel and animal musk. The silky textures are contrasted by balsamic-tinged red berries, inner florals and marine-inspired minerality. The 2015 is energetic and spicy to the core, but so savory as well – more like food than wine. This tapers off long, zesty and vibrant, with saturating black fruits and tannins that come in late but linger for over a minute. This wine is a beast. Drinking window: 2021-2032. 94 points

    Elena Fucci is located in the heart of the Aglianico del Vulture production zone. Fucci is the fourth generation of her family to grow grapes in these soils of volcanic ash, in a location that spans the Titolo lava channel at 650 meters above sea level. It’s one of the highest-elevation vineyards of the region, planted with vines that average 60 years old – and some are even older. These lands were first purchased in the 1960s by Fucci’s grandfather, Generoso, who was a grower more than a winemaker. However, the high elevations of the vineyard, which at that time was known as Solagna, appealed to his common sense as a farmer and his desire to get the best price for his fruit. What he didn’t sell, he would make into wine, which only the family would drink. However, when the farm was left to the next generation, the decision was made to sell. Elena Fucci struggled with the thought of losing her childhood home and, feeling a serious connection to the vines and territory, she convinced her parents to allow her to tend to the vineyard and became a winemaker.

    It all started with one wine, Titolo. Today, the idea of creating a single-vineyard expression in Vulture is common, but this was not the case 20 years ago. Elena Fucci helped to change all of that. When I look back to tastings from only five or six years ago, her wines stood out for their chiseled clarity, purity of fruit and structure. In a region where most producers would sell their fruit to the large houses, for blending into massive productions, Fucci instead decided to use only the best fruit from her family’s vineyards to create a wine that spoke of variety and place. Since that time, the portfolio has expanded, but in all of the right ways. This was my first introduction to the Titolo by Amphora, which is sourced from a selection of grapes in the vineyard, fermented leaving a large percentage of clusters intact, and then matured in terra-cotta amphorae for 18 months. Then there is the barrique-aged 2013 Riserva, which is a selection from within the selection that was made for the flagship Titiolo in that vintage, bottled in magnum, of which there were only 400 made. Also, a new project, SCEG (which means “pomegranate” in local dialect), marries Elena Fucci’s winemaking skills with the fruit of surrounding local farmers who have been family friends since her grandfather’s generation. These are all parcels in close proximity to Titolo with 70-plus-year-old vines. The wine is refined all in 500-liter tonneaux for a year, and it represents a more approachable but still classically styled Aglianico. Lastly, there is the flagship wine, Titolo, which still holds its position at the head of the pack.”

    Eric Guido, Vinous (07/21)

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