Tuscany In The City

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I attended an event on Saturday afternoon presented by wine writer Antonio Galloni and his wine blog Vinous. The event was titled “Tuscany in the City, Tuscany: A Study in Terroir”.

Fifteen wines were poured with the owners and or wine makers from those properties on hand to talk about their respective wines and properties. The event was held at Del Posto restaurant located at 85 10th Avenue. The wines were poured by several of the city’s top Sommeliers that were in attendance.

It was a sit-down tasting and the wines were poured and tasted in four flights with each flight a different expression of Tuscan wines.

Flight 1: Chianti Classico Reserva

2010 Fontadi Chianti Classico Reserva “Vigna del Sorbo”. Dark red with a nose of violets and toasted sweet cherries with dusty fruit and firm tannin on the finish.

2010 Fattoria di Felisina Chianti Classico Reserva “Rancia”. Dark red with an amber robe with grapey, black licorice and a bit of cooked fruit on the nose, I thought the grapiness blew off after a few minutes. It was tight with a dusty finish. In my opinion the wine needs some more time to come together.

2008 Castell’in Villa Chianti Classico Reserva. Medium red with a nose of dried herbs, thyme and was very tight with crisp acids on the finish.

Flight 2: 100% Sangiovese

2010 Isole e Olena “Cepparello”. Dark red with a big nose of black cherry with toasty and dried herbs notes on the fruit.

2010 San Guisto a Rentennano “Percario”. Dark red with a floral perfume of red cherry and cooked vegetable with tight and dusty fruit with a mouth-full of tannin with mineral and salty notes.

2010 Poggio Scalette “Il Carbonaione”. Dark red to black with notes of roasted meat and burnt rubber on the nose and was chunky and somewhat unbalanced.

2010 Podere Forte “Petrucci”. Medium red with a perfume of red cherry and dried herbs with juicy fruit framed with balanced tannin and acid.

Flight 3: Sangiovese & Bordeaux Blends

2010 Antinori “Tignanello”. Dark red to black with black cherry and mint with a dash of barnyard on the nose.

2009 Castello dei Rampolla “Sammarco”. Medium to dark red with a big perfume, floral, tar, slate with some barnyard, tight with a big hit of mouth puckering tannin, a bit jarring.

2010 Agricola Querciabella “Camartina”. Dark red with red cherry, mint and dried herbs with some barnyard on the nose, chunky, tight with firm and balanced tannin and acid at the end.

 2010 Castello di Ama “L’Apparita”. Dark red with prunes, dark plums and mint on the nose with bright, tart fruit.

Flight 4: Bordeaux Blends

2010 Tenuta San Guido “Sassicaia”. Dark red with red cherry and roasted meat on the nose and was plummy with tart cherry on the finish.  A little disappointed in the wine.

2010 Le Macchiole “Paleo Rosso”. 100% Cabernet Franc, dark red to black in color with bell pepper and tar on the nose and was chewy and dusty with mint notes and a big grip at the end.

2010 Tenuta dell’ Ornellaia “Ornellaia”. Dark red to black with roasted coffee and dark chocolate on the nose, velvety with notes of crushed rock, slate and dark berries on the fruit with mouth filling tannin on the finish.

2011 Tenuta di Trinoro “Rosso Toscana”. Dark red with a purple robe with roasted, ripe vegetable on the nose with bright cherry fruit that was chewy and chunky with tight tannin and firm acids on the finish.


Long Island Wine Expo

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On Saturday late afternoon I attended the Long Island Wine Expo. The expo was held at the Cradle of Aviation museum in Garden City Long Island. The museum commemorates Long Island’s part in the early history of aviation. It seems that part of Long Island was conducive to flying since the geography was flat and tree-less. In fact, Charles Lindbergh took off on his famous flight to Paris about a mile from the museum where the Roosevelt Field Mall is located now. The museum itself is pretty cool, covering the history of aviation from the first flying machines to the space age. I liked the World War II fighter aircraft as well as Lunar landing that was scheduled to land on the surface of the moon.

The Expo itself wasn’t as exciting as the museum. Billed as “the largest wine event on long island”, I don’t feel it was all it could have been, long lines and for the most part, forgettable wines. The crowd did seem to be having a good time though.

Some of what I enjoyed:

2005 Sparking Point “Brut Seduction” (North Fork). Sparking wine from a producer that only produces sparking wine. Nose of lime and melon and nicely crisp with citrus notes on the finish.

2012 Cambria Pinot Noir “Julia’s Vineyard” (Santa Maria Valley). Medium red with dark berries on the nose and was juicy with coffee notes on the finish.

2011 Ferrero Roso di Montalcino (Piedmont). Dark amber with dark cherry notes and was silky with some sour cherry on the finish.

2012 Salentein Reserve Malbec (Mendoza). Dark red with a concentrated nose of dark plums and sweet spices and was juicy and dusty with some mint notes on the finish.

2008 Faustino “V” Reserve (Rioja). Dark red to black with an old world nose of dried leaf and cigar box, tight with sweet cherry fruit and sour cherry on the finish.

2009 Santa Rita Cabernet Sauvignon  Reserva (Maipo Valley). Dark red with an amber robe with bell pepper on the nose and was concentrated and juicy with black licorice notes with a firm grip.

Le Deux Chateau poured a couple of their wines, the 2012 Pinot Noir and the 2012 Chardonnay. I was told that the grapes are French but were bottled on the North Fork of Long Island. The wines are available in bottles but my samples were poured from kegs. Both the wines were inexpensive with not much character to them but were easy drinking, which is what I suppose you would want in a budget glass of wine.



Industry Event

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On Monday evening I attended an event sponsored by Culintro which was billed for “NYC’s Industry Elite”. Mighty fancy words and since I’m in the biz I decided to stop by. The event was held at Hearth restaurant located at 403 E 12th Street. The night tastings are usually a lot of fun and this time was no different. Beer, spirits and wines from the Rhone Valley to drink and the people at Hearth put out a nice spread of various salumi  and cheeses. And on at midnight, the roast pig made its grand entrance.

It was more cocktail party than tasting so I stuck with a few wines to keep me busy:

2012 Prieure de Montazargues Rosé (Tavel, Rhone). My starter wine, dark pink with notes of cantaloupe melon on the nose and was full bodied with cherry flavors on the finish.

2011 Andre Brunel Cote du Rhone Villages “Cuvée Sabrine” (Rhone). Notes of roasted coffee with a good grip on the finish.

2010 Vidal Fleury Crozes-Hermitage (Rhone). Looking forward to drinking this, was a little disappointed, the wine tasted tired, older than the vintage. Notes of tobacco and slate on the nose with ripe fruit followed by mint and pencil shavings on the finish.