Italian Wine Reviews

Posted by Keith Wallace

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Tenuta Roveglio Lugana…Trebbiano is one of the more maligned Italian varietals, sometimes deservedly so. But when done right, such as this Trebbiano di Soave branch of the family tree, it can be crisp, fruity, and provide texture and depth. Peach and focused pear flavors stand out but give way to a juicy citrus finish that keeps it refreshing. Has a semi-amabile feel.

Zamo Ribolla Giallo…A masterful blend that includes Friulano, Sauvignon Blanc, and Riesling. Mildly herbal with a hint of the pungent aromatics of the Sauvignon allied with the subdued fruitiness and creamy texture of Tocai. It picks up Riesling’s lemon/lime acidity, along with the crisp minerals you’d expect from a Colli Orientali Bianco. Great with seafood.

Colli deo Bardellini Vermentino” U Munte”…There’s some decent heft in this smooth, mouthcoating Ligurian wine. Less of the usual coastal salinity, but lively acidity lifts the peach and tropical melon flavors and maintains the bright, zesty feeling throughout. Some hints of chalky minerals add interest and complexity.

Girolamo Dorigo Schioppettino….Ribolla’s Friulian cousin carries peppery and floral aromatics up front before delivering full-bodied and smooth dark plums and blackberries bolstered by scorched earth and minerals. The tannins stay mild and support cassis and black raspberry undertones on the finish. 

Eraldo Viberti Langhe Nebbiolo…While this doesn’t have the breadth or depth of other versions from the area, it stays true to its varietal and sense of place. Typical subdued nose, only with more herbal notes, which continue on the palate and give the fruit flavors a rustic, forest feel. Smooth, light tannins play off the tart and juicy acidity. It actually becomes drier as it proceeds, adding a bitter earth aftertaste.

Emidio Pepe Montepulciano d’Abruzzo…. When you reach the point where you feel that all Italian wines are starting to taste the same, and you can’t tell a Chianti from a Cali Cab (which hopefully never happens!), this is the wine to lift you from the depths of standardized despair. Though the fruit is slightly more concentrated, the uncompromising authenticity that marks this producer remains true given its hot vintage. Deep, bold, evocative….try a bottle and supply your own adjectives.

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