GRAPE: Aglianico REGION: Campagnia COUNTRY: Italy AVE PRICE: $29
Before spending the evening with Drogone. I had a previous late night encounter with Cantina Giardino’s 2006 Nude. The Nude is confident and seductive. Deep purple in color and fragrant. It’s a bit slutty, yet pure. The Nude is President, which makes the 2012 Drogone the Secretary of Defense. Like the Nude, Drogone gives you depth, confidence, and provides palate security. This wine has a solid well defined lines. There is layer upon layer of flavor. Musky and a bit herbal. Some black fruit and charcoal. The vines are old as chaos. Grown on volcanic soils. And aged 4 years in chestnut barrels.
My favorite meal. This Aglinico’s acidic, tannic, and muscular structure calls for a bloody, well salted grilled piece of meat. Burn the meat. The saltiness and bitterness of the charred flesh combined with the bloody interior followed by a sip of Drogone with it’s slightly bitter finish is nothing short of ecstasy.
I love all the wines I’ve had from Cantina Giardino. Their wines feel pure. Well cared for from inception to graduation. They must be receiving a gentle and intelligent guidance to be so perfect.
WEB: Scuola di Vino
GRAPE: Schioppettino REGION: Friuli COUNTRY: Italy AVE PRICE: $55
A tiny sniff of this wine will not only brighten your day but also will send you deep into your memory bank. At leasts that’s what it did for me. I remember my great aunt greeting every single individual who walked into her restaurant with love. Her place was called Sergi’s Ice House and was located in Little Italy, Baltimore. Her father immigrated from Sicily at the turn of the Century. He arrived in Philadelphia and made his way to the Anthracite coal mines. I can’t begin to imagine the hell at these camps. The shit I like to complain about these days is cupcakes and daisies compared to that life. When telling his family about his experiences he told them that the coal mines, “It wasn’t for him”. He then moved on to Philadelphia and sold day old fruit out of a cart. One day his cart was hit by a vehicle and destroyed. The owner of the vehicle gave him some cash and he headed to Little Italy in Baltimore and started making cheese. The health authorities shut him down. So he then started a business delivering ice. That’s where my Aunt got the name for her restaurant, Sergi’s Ice House.
I remember how much love she showered every person who walked through the door. Her restaurant had a heart and a soul. She’d go from table to table in making sure everyone had what they wanted. I can still smell and taste of her salads, pasta, and last but not least, the pizza! And more than that I remember her strength, honesty, love, and amazing stories. She passed away on June 1, 2017 at the age of 99.
I found warm memories of family and love in Bressan’s 2011 Schioppettino. It’s charming and elegant. It’s philosophical. It’s beautiful and has a fragrance resonating of dried rose, pine, with a subtle herbaceousness. It would definitely be worn as a perfume. If wine-making is a dance with nature then drinking this wine should be like a slow dance with a lover. You’ll experience some dried rose, mint, spices, along with a delicateness of warm berries.
If you’re not down with decanting, you better drive this wine slow. An hour or two of air you’ll feel it penetrate every fiber of your body and soul. You’ll experience a velvety explosion of pleasure in your mouth. There is no spitting this juice. This wine is free jazz when it comes to expression. Although I do not know the winemaker personally, basing it on this wine alone, I have to believe he is man of great emotion and passion and possesses a special relationship to the land.
WEB: Scuola di Vino & Bressan