lunedì 2 settembre 2013




2010 Fattoria Selvapiana Chianti Rufina

The LA Times‘ wine writer, Irene Virbila, The Chianti region is large, and while the wines from the Classico region are the best known, for price and quality, look to the lesser-known Chianti Rufina, a small area in the northeastern corner of Chianti proper.

Selvapiana is one of the best estates in Rufina, turning out first-rate Sangiovese-based reds. I’ve been buying its Chianti for years, keeping it on hand for pasta nights and grilled skirt steak or chops. A deep ruby in colour, the 2010 Selvapiana tastes of bright cherries and plums, but a touch of earth gives it some weight. A great everyday Chianti.


Montevertine Le Pergole Torte 2009

John Mariani, for Bloomberg, recommended this wine, writing: “Finding Tuscan wine laws too restrictive in the 1960s, Sergio Manetti withdrew from the Chianti Consorzio and in 1971 bottled a 100% Sangiovese from a vineyard he called Le Pergole Torte.

He added: “The wines tend to be supple even when young, and this is a delicious example of what caused all the fuss in Tuscany four decades ago, when ‘super’ was a novel descriptive.”


Tenuta di Arceno, Chianti Classico 2010

This wine is recommended by Rebecca Murphy in the Dallas Morning News. She wrote: “You’ve most likely heard of Kendall-Jackson wines, the original wines of the late Jess Jackson. He was a bigger-than-life entrepreneur who created many a new wine drinker beginning with his K-J chardonnay in the 1980s. Over the years, he and his wife, Barbara Banke, and other family members have created an international wine empire. Tenuta di Arceno in Tuscany is part of that empire.”

In describing this wine, she added: “This is a rich and supple Chianti with ripe cherry and strawberry flavours and notes of liquorice and cedar. The ripeness of the fruit is balanced with zesty acidity and dusty tannins. It’s sophisticated enough for a formal dinner with roasted or grilled red meats, but it won’t talk down to a sausage pizza.”

Lamoresca I.G.T. Sicilia Rosso 2009

In the New York Times Eric Asimov featured wines from Sicily, writing: “The transformation of the world of wine in the last 20 years has been simply astounding. Consumers have been blessed with a profusion of wonderful wines from sources that few would have predicted as recently as the turn of the century. Case in point: Sicily.”

In terms of this wine he added: Our number one wine, the 2009 Sicilia Rosso from Lamoresca, was spicy, earthy and structured, pleasantly funky yet alive and deep in the glass.

Arianna Occhipinti I.G.T. Sicilia SP68 2012

Asimov also wrote of Sicily: “Now Sicily is one of the most exciting wine regions in the world. That goes particularly for the reds, which are not heavy at all but fresh and lively. Whites, too, are emerging, especially those made from the savoury Carricante grape on Mount Etna.”

He added: “Number two was the 2012 SP68 from Arianna Occhipinti, fresh, bright and surprisingly complex for a wine intended to be drunk young, with long-lasting floral, fruit and mineral flavours.”


Burchino Genius Loci 2005

This wine was recommended by Dave McIntyre in the Washington Post. He wrote: “This is very Old World in style: earthy, with sour cherry and cocoa notes typical of a Sangiovese that picks up balsamic notes from ageing in large casks.

It reminds me of a Brunello, at a fraction of the price, and shows how well a ‘simple’ Tuscan Sangiovese can age. We don’t have to worry about cellaring it; that’s already been done for us.”



2010 Vietti Nebbiolo “Perbacco”

In the LA Times, Irene Virbila wrote that she was “impressed with this Nebbiolo from Barolo producer Vietti.”

She added: “Think of it more as a youthful cousin of Barolo, made with the same grape varietal, picked from vineyards in the Barolo region with an average vine age of 35 years. So this isn’t exactly young vines but a wonderfully structured, delicious Nebbiolo that doesn’t need the excuse of a big occasion for you to pop the cork.

“Complex and elegant, it’s supple enough to drink with a roast chicken or a hearty pasta dish, and will hold its own against anything from the grill too.”

UK Press

Tenuta San Guido Le Difese 2011

David Williams picked out this wine in The Observer. He wrote: “In a sense, this high-end red from the acclaimed producer of one of Italy’s swankiest wines (Sassicaia) is the vinous equivalent of a fashion designer’s diffusion line.

But this Bordeaux-meets-Tuscany mix of mostly Cabernet Sauvignon with Sangiovese has more than a touch of the original’s quality: with its herb-flecked, black and red fruit, it is polished, fresh and stylish.”


2011 Langhe Fresia Giacomo Borgogno

In the Daily Telegraph, Hamish Anderson looked at red wines that are good for chilling. This was one of the wines he picked out, writing: “This is a versatile red just as happy at room temperature in the cooler months as with a chill on it when the sun is out.

Made by one of the great traditionalists of Piedmont, it is light-bodied yet with flavours of bitter dark cherry and damson. Again, cool [best with only an hour in the fridge] rather than completely chill.”



Valdo Marca Oro Extra Dry Prosecco NV

Atkins also recommended this wine, writing: “Well-known, reliable Prosecco currently on very good form, crisp and orange-scented with bright and breezy, mouthwatering flavours of kiwi and green grapes.”

Asian media

Castello Romitorio Morellino di Scansano DOCG 2007

This wine was picked out by Damon Yuen, on the Wine Buzz Hong Kong. He wrote: “Brilliant clear garnet, nose of fresh flowers, earth and plum. On the palate, bitter cherries end in a steady silky finish. 

This wine pairs well with (1) pea sprouts stir-fried in garlic (2) mushroom, beef or pork rice noodle wraps (Cheung Fun) with a light soya sauce (3) steamed prawns dipped in soy sauce with chillies and (4) fish steamed with ginger and green onion, bathing in hot oil and soya sauce.


Masciarelli Trebbiano d’Abruzzo DOC 2011


Amanda Barnes, writing for winebuzz.hk, described this as a, “lovely wine from a family winery”. She added that the wine, “has fresh apple and apricot aromas and you can order Italian food from Buonissimo to go with it.”



Casale Mattia N/V

Barnes also picked out this wine, writing: “For something a bit different you can try this sweet wine made from Trebbiano with a blend of other white wines. Candy, nuts, honey, good with cheese and pate.”


China’s best selling online

Cantore Di Castelforte Primitivo del Salento IGT 2010

Primitivo is a variety characterised by its high sugar levels and, consequently, high alcohol levels and this was a wine that was rather polarising among Wangjiu users.

While many consumers enjoyed the intense aromas of ripe fruits, others found it “too heavy” due to its alcohol level.
In spite of the divided views on the wine itself, most consumers still gave the wine a positive rating as they found the wine label “classy” and appropriate as a gift.

Price on Wangjiu: ¥109.00 (£11)
Wangjiu customer reviews:
“Italian wines are honestly too heavy, and some are simply unbearable. Perhaps it takes time to get used to them.”
“Rich and luscious with gentle tannins. The design of the bottle goes very well with the design of the wine label. Excellent.”
“The black bottle makes it very cool–what a dignified gift for a friend.”

Casa Vinicola Morando Montepulciano d’Abruzzo DOC 2011

The fourth best-selling wine on Wangjiu.com, the Morando Montepulciano d’Abruzzo is praised for its moderate acidity levels and its earthy, aromatic notes.

Price on Wangjiu: ¥365.00, (£39)
Wangjiu customer reviews:
“A full-bodied, fresh, and floral style. Dry with firm tannins.”
“Fresh on the palate with fruity aromas. Acidity is not too high considering it is an Italian wine, and makes for a pleasant food wine.”
“Good value for money with just the right amount of acidity.”


Morando Moscato Spumante NV

Perhaps to the surprise of most people, this sweet, sparkling Italian tops the list of Wangjiu’s sales with more than 5,000 bottles sold in July alone. 

With 6% alcohol by volume, this wine was cited by many consumers to be a crowd-pleaser and a refreshing aperitif to cool down with in the Chinese summer.In addition, the popularity of the Moscato Spumante also serves to debunk the misconception that Chinese drinkers only spend money on wines that are red, premium, and from Bordeaux.

Price on Wangjiu: ¥120.00 (£12)
Wangjiu customer reviews:
“Great value for money, and tasty too especially when drunk chilled in summer. It pairs well with all kinds of food.”
“Superb value, cheap, delicious, and the preferred drink for gatherings.”
“A wine that reminds me very much of Sprite.”