23 September 2006

Paul Marcus Wines Tasting: France and Italy

2002 Dm. Fontainerie Vouvray Sec $20
Nose turning to an interesting bouqet of minerals and caramel with classic honey suckle overtones; mouth has some honey and caramel interplay with great streaks of tartness that would go well with food. Drink now and save one for the road since 2002 was such a great vintage in the Loire.

2003 Dm Berthoumieu Madiran $18
No light is getting through this brooder. The wine has Tannat grapes which are still quite Tannic. The nose is all black fruit but it really that really opens us in the mouth. Drink now and put one away. It's not often that you can get a decent wine for aging so cheaply.

2004 Le Ciciole Chianti classic $22
Nose is straighfoward with a slight resin and anise character with black cherry; once in bocca, releases lots of just ripe and refreshing bing cherry. Medium tannis and light ot medium body. Grab a flank steak and go!

2004 Siro Pacenti Rosso di Montalcino $30

A baby Brunello! Great nose to mouth cohesion. This wine reminds me of a wonderful risotto I had in Piemonte of just ripe blackberry with porcini mushrooms. Nose: those balckberries, touch of fresh porcini and a hint of plum cake (Merlot?). Medium body that's plush and savory. The wine will give you all the joy of a Brunello at half the price.

2004 Amphorae Montepulciano d'Abruzzo $7.99

This wine is from the region of Abruzzo (not Toscana as the Montepulciano in the grape name misleads). Simple with yummy ripe black fruit and soft tannins. Joel says it has a "barn-yard counterpoint." Try it with a pasta or pizza with carmelized onions, olives, and gorgonzola.

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