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The very concept of Italian wine is so vast and varied and distinctive, it’s like a world unto itself within the world of wine. And, given its vast array of unique indigenous varieties, the appreciation of fine Italian wine is an undertaking that could well keep one occupied for a lifetime.

 
Quick-links to featured wines:
2016 Barolo Castiglione Vietti   2013 Barolo Fratelli Seghesio   2015 Brunello di Montalcino Caparzo   2015 Brunello di Montalcino Il Poggione   2018 Etna Rosso Tenuta della Terre Nere   2016 Ornellaia Bolgheri Superiore   2016 Antinori Tenuta Tignanello   2016 Fontodi Chianti Classico Gran Selezione Vigna del Sorbo   2015 Fontodi Flaccianello della Pieve   2012 Brunello di Montalcino Conti Costanti   2012 Brunello di Montalcino Eredi Fuligni   2014 Barbaresco Gaja   2017 Dogliani Superiore Vigna Tecc Poderi Luigi Einaudi   2017 Aia Vecchia Lagone Toscana Rosso   2019 Soave Brigaldara   2018 Pinot Grigio Alto Adige Valle Isarco Abbazia di Novacella   2018 Colterenzio Chardonnay Altkirch Alto Adige  
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2016 Barolo Castiglione Vietti

The 2016 Barolo Castiglione is a dazzling wine that will show readers just how compelling this vintage is, even among entry-level wines from top producers. Rich, ample and explosive, the 2016 possesses tremendous richness and resonance from the very first taste. Bright red cherry and red plum fruit, wild flowers, mint, blood orange and spice build as this sumptuous, dramatic Barolo shows all it's got. As always, the Castiglione is built on a core of fruit from Ravera. In 2016, the Castiglione benefits from the inclusion of several new sites, including Ginestra, Mosconi, Bricco Ravera (in Monforte), Le Coste, Costabelle, Meriame, Briccolina and Codana. All I can say is: What a wine! Drink 2024‑2041. Rated 94. - Antonio Galloni, vinous.com, February, 2020

$50.00 the bottle  $255.00 the case of 6

2013 Barolo Fratelli Seghesio

Seghesio's 2013 Barolo is absolutely gorgeous. An exquisite bouquet laced with orange peel, Christmas cake, rosewater and kirsch makes a strong opening statement. Deceptively medium in body and light on its feet, the 2013 offers a lovely interplay of aromas, flavors and textures. Because of its light to mid-weight structure, the 2013 can be enjoyed with minimal cellaring, although naturally there is some tannic grip to the wine. This is a very strong vintage for Seghesio's straight Barolo. Drink 2018-2025. Rated 91. - Antonio Galloni, vinous.com October, 2017

$35.00 the bottle  $357.00 the case

2015 Brunello di Montalcino Caparzo

One whiff speaks volumes. The vintage of 2015, l'annata solare is, if certainly ripe, a vintage of real consequence in this part of the world. And this 2015 Brunello from Caparzo, their 50th anniversary bottling, is just superb, demonstrating the gravitas of this hallowed appellation what with the "elegant and forceful"☨ aromas so very signature to Sangiovese from Montalcino: burnished leather, tart cherry, Italian blue plum, a parched vineyard floor, macchea mediterannea and much, much more (Henry noted for himself characteristic sun-dried tomato); starting out merely ample, the wine seems to build, expanding on the palate to more potent and full yet still supple and caressing in texture with flavors that follow the aromas straight down the path, both savory and satisfying. And Caparzo has always offered itself up as splendid value among the various superb Brunello di Montalcino that we might propose.

$40.00 the bottle  $408.00 the case

☨ from Wine Grapes by Jancis Robinson, Julia Harding & José Vouillamoz


2015 Brunello di Montalcino Il Poggione

The Il Poggione 2015 Brunello di Montalcino shows a darker and more concentrated appearance than many of its peers. The wine is beautifully abundant and fragrant in the most exuberant and expressive manner. You will recognize aromas of moist soil, tobacco and smoke. Candied cherry hovers over the entire bouquet. Fruit is sourced from older vines (all over 25 years old). Il Poggione occupies a special spot within the Montalcino appellation, and the area always produces slightly more concentrated and powerful wines. I find that to be particularly true in this gorgeous 2015 vintage. I am also very attracted to that almost dusty note of crushed mineral that rides long on the full-bodied finish. Il Poggione's Brunello is also distinguished by firm, youthful tannin that need a few more years to unwind. Luckily, there are quite a few bottles to go around, with some 200,000 made. Drink 2021‑2045. Rated 97. - Monica Larner, Wine Advocate January, 2020

$80.00 the bottle  $408.00 the case of 6

2018 Etna Rosso Tenuta della Terre Nere

Etna Rosso is, for us, a most wonderful if somewhat recent discovery of some, um, magmatude. And Tenuta delle Terre Nere have emerged a favorite producer of the wine among our discerning clientèle. This Etna Rosso, their opening salvo among a number of delicious bottlings, is produced from a preponderance of Nerello Mascalese along with a dash of Nerello Cappuccio fruit from the young vines of the estate cropped at low yields of around 35 hectolitres per hectare and growing on the hillsides of the famous volcano on the eastern edge of the island of Sicily. Absolutely gorgeous translucent deep ruby in color with a certain vinosità what with almost almost fermentive aromas of crushed ripe berries, rose petals and stone; deceptively supple on entry then building in body with a steady crescendo of substantial ripe tannins, power and volcanic warmth on the tongue. While there has been a good deal of comparison of Etna Rosso to Burgundian Pinot Noir, the aromatic profile is really quite different and the silken-textured opening quickly gives way, builds into somewhat more of a southern powerhouse on the tongue, with fine-grained tannins seemingly carrying bursting flavors right on up that hill, potent and long to the finish. Maybe a comparison to a mythical marriage of Chambolle-Musigny and Châteauneuf-du-Pape would be more apt but, then again, no. Etna Rosso is sui generis. One might say it enters on silken slippers, all carefree, island-hopping light on its feet, but goes out with a firm and forceful resolve, as one might reasonably expect of a wine whose vines' dance partner is the stuff of an active volcano.

$22.50 the bottle  $229.56 the case

2016 Ornellaia Bolgheri Superiore

The 2016 Bolgheri Superiore Ornellaia is a wine of extreme complexity and precision. It offers monumental depth with profound layers of black fruit, coffee, licorice and baking chocolate. I tasted this 2016 vintage beside the less-impactful 2015 vintage (which was reviewed last year). These two editions are very different when compared side to side, and this 2016 release is clearly superior in terms of the quality, clarity and intensity of its offerings. This Ornellaia delivers glossy shine and a polished texture that segues to important richness, concentration and textural fiber. It wraps thickly over the palate, imparting waves of sweet dark fruit and dark spice that linger for many long minutes. This beautiful wine is hitting the market now, but collectors will want to put it straight into their cellars for safekeeping. Drink 2021-2045. Rated 98. - Monica Larner, The Wine Advocate April, 2019

Just bottled, the 2016 Ornellaia is a dense, powerful wine. Naturally, the 2016 is just at the beginning of its life, but I am struck by how polished the tannins are for such a young wine. Ornellaia is at its best starting around age ten, but there is little doubt the 2016 is a hugely promising wine. Black cherry, chocolate, plum, new leather and a range of spice notes all build into a veritable crescendo of aromas, flavors and textures. Drink 2026-2041. Rated 96+. - Antonio Galloni, vinous.com March, 2019

$237.50 the bottle  $1,211.28 the case of 6

2016 Antinori Tenuta Tignanello

The 2016 Tignanello is flat out stunning. Dark, dense and resonant, the 2016 is a wonderfully complete wine that will provide readers with decades of pure drinking pleasure. The 2016 is especially dark and brooding, and yet the tannins are incredibly polished to the point of being perceptible. In the glass, the 2016 is complete and regal, perhaps because of the super-classic blend of 80% Sangiovese, 15% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Cabernet Franc. The pedigree of the vintage comes through in the wine's extraordinary balance and total sense of finesse. I don't think there is another wine anywhere in the world made entirely from estate fruit that can match Tignanello for quality, consistency and value within its peer group of top-flight reds. Drink 2022-2046. Rated 98. - Antonio Galloni, www.vinous.com August, 2019

$132.50 the bottle  $675.78 the case of 6
$67.50 the 375ml half-bottle  $688.56 the case of 12
$300.00 the 1.5-litre magnum


2016 Fontodi Chianti Classico Gran Selezione Vigna del Sorbo

The 2016 Chianti Classico Gran Selezione Vigna del Sorbo is a wine of tremendous aromatic intensity, freshness and nuance. Sweet floral and spice notes meld into a core of blue/purplish fruit, lavender, licorice and leather, with veins of bright acids that perk things up nicely. Readers need to be patient with the 2016, as it is going to need at least a few years to come into its own. But I have seen this before with Vigna del Sorbo. Sometimes the more reticent vintages turn out the be the most complete and thrilling wines with cellaring. I imagine that will be the case here as well. Drink 2022-2041. Rated 97+. - Antonio Galloni, www.vinous.com August, 2019

$112.50 the bottle $1,147.56 the case


2015 Fontodi Flaccianello della Pieve

The 2015 Flaccianello della Pieve is even more stratospheric than it was last year. Rich and ample on the palate, Flaccianello captures all of the best qualities of this radiant vintage. The blend of sites, all in higher altitude spots near the center of town, yields a gorgeous, riveting wine of the very highest level. Dense and brooding, with magnificent energy as well as nuance, the 2015 Flaccianello is positively stunning. Drink: 2025-2040. Rated 99. - Antonio Galloni, www.vinous.com August, 2019

The 2015 Flaccianello della Pieve is truly remarkable. An exotic mélange of black cherry jam, chocolate, grilled herbs and spice melds together in a huge, beautifully layered wine of exceptional class and pedigree. The 2015 manages to be dense and rich, but never overdone. The 2015 spent 20 months in French oak, 80%, followed by 6 months in cask. It is the final phase of aging in large wood that seems to help integrating the smaller oak influence. The 2015 is shaping up to be a modern-day icon. There's not much more to it than that. Drink 2022-2045. Rated 98. - Antonio  Galloni, www.vinous.com February, 2019

$150.00 the bottle  $1,530.00 the case (Quantities may be limited.)

2012 Brunello di Montalcino Conti Costanti

Vivid dark red. Ripe aromas of red cherry, blood orange and stone fruit. Smooth, dense and juicy, with flavors similar to the aromas but complicated by notes of fresh herbs, sweet spices and hints of flint. Long and suave, with noble but youthfully chewy tannins providing support. Knockout classic Brunello, in fact, one of the year’s best. Drink 2024-2034. Rated 94+. - Ian d'Agata, vinous.com March, 2017

$75.00 the bottle  $765.00 the case

2012 Brunello di Montalcino Eredi Fuligni

Good full red. Complex, penetrating aromas and flavors of red cherry, strawberry, minerals and violet, plus a complicating hint of cinnamon. Rich and dense but with a strong mineral underpinning giving this a very precise, lifted mouthfeel. Long and very clean on the vibrant finish. Outstanding, classic, refined Brunello. Drink 2024-2040. Rated 93+. - Ian d'Agata, vinous.com March, 2017

$75.00 the bottle  $765.00 the case

2014 Barbaresco Gaja

Gaja's 2014 Barbaresco is rich, super-dense, and inviting, with serious underpinnings of structure and the same classicism that made the 2013 so compelling. Dense and powerful in the glass, with explosive energy and tons of tannin, the 2014 is built for extended cellaring. Expressive floral and savory notes hover out of the glass in this super-expressive Barbaresco. This is one of the most tightly wound, intense versions of Gaja's Barbaresco I can remember tasting. Don't miss it. Drink 2024-2044. Rated 96. - Antonio Galloni, vinous.com October, 2017

$200.00 the bottle  $1020.00 the case of 6

2017 Dogliani Superiore Vigna Tecc Poderi Luigi Einaudi

"Dogliani" is a new(ish) DOCG which denotes highest quality wines produced from Dolcetto grapes in this cooler, higher elevation growing area in this southern part of Piemonte. Vigna Tecc «pronounced tetch» is produced from 100% Dolcetto fruit from vines planted to the marl/calcareous and clay soils from 2 hectares of favored south facing old hillside vineyards on the estate near the village of Dogliani. Deep ruby in color with fermentive aromas of grape pomace and pencil shavings, bitter almond and a waft of liquirizia; at once, ample grapey and firm on the palate, with an almost crunchy fruit character and that telltale hint of bitter almond on the mouthwatering finish.

$24.99 the bottle  $254.88 the case

2017 Aia Vecchia Lagone Toscana Rosso

A lovely if modestly modern claret-inspired Tuscan red wine from La California, as it is called there on the Tuscan coast near Bolgheri and Magliano. Produce of 60% Merlot along with an admixture of Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc, the wine undergoes a temperature-controlled fermentation, manual punch-downs and pump-overs. It is aged one year in barrique and a minimum of six months in bottle before release. Lovely ruby red in color with typical claret aromas suggesting ripe cherries, wild berries, a hint of spice, a scent of vanilla from barrel aging, but with a telltale and toothsome seaside saline quality; medium-bodied on the palate with a gentle richness and structure and long, smooth finish. Superb value, too!

$14.99 the bottle  $152.88 the case

2019 Soave Brigaldara 2019 Soave Brigaldara

We've recommended Brigaldara for years for the quality and value of various of their red wines from Valpolicella. Their splendid white wine from Soave is a more recent discovery. Produce of 100% Garganega fruit hand-harvested from vines in Marcellise east of Verona and trained in the Pergola veronese fashion, the fruit undergoes temperature-controlled fermentation including selective cryoextraction (a partial freezing of the grapes) that protects them from oxidation and furthers all the eventual wine's aromatic potential; brilliant light yellow gold in color with hyper-fresh aromas that conjure a cool morning harvest of just ripened green grapes with further suggestion of straw, chamomile, peach and citrus (Ian sensed a kind of golden delicious apple); supple and just rounded in texture with all the nerve of fresh acidity keeping everything lively and tantalizing on the tongue. Remarkable value, too!

$13.75 the bottle  $140.28 the case

2018 Pinot Grigio Alto Adige Valle Isarco Abbazia di Novacella

From 100% Pinot Grigio fruit grown in the Bressanone valley basin at elevations of 600m-900m, well on your way into the Alps from Bolzano and what is one of the loveliest vineyard situations one might imagine (there is even a ski area above the town of Bressanone); pale golden yellow with glints of green in color; brisk, mountain fresh aromatics suggest taut cool of the morning grapes, pine, mint, orchard fruits, hazelnut (knowing where this wine is grown really just stirs the imagination); crisp, vibrant and fresh on the tongue yet ample in body, supple and satisfying with a lovely Alpine intensity of flavor that lasts.

$19.99 the bottle  $203.88 the case

2018 Colterenzio Chardonnay Altkirch Alto Adige

Produce of 100% Chardonnay from deep sandy soils on gravelly deposits in the otherworldly gorgeous SüdTirol-Alto Adige of northeastern Italia. Temperature-controlled (read cool) fermentation in stainless-steel tanks (read unoaked), the new wine subsequently matures for several months on the fine lees. The result is a brilliant, shimmering lemon yellow gold with glints of green in color; ultra-fresh aromas suggestive of vines in flower, flesh and skin of fresh green apple, melon and mango; supple and nicely rounded on the tongue with just a hint of citrus and saline mineral tang; both satisfying and refreshing, and all for a price so gulpably easy on the pocketbook.

$14.99 the bottle  $152.88 the case


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