Lucchetti Lacrima di Morro d’Alba DOC 2015

Estate: Passionately revitalizing indigenous varietals, Mario Lucchetti was one of the original Lacrima winemakers in the Lacrima di Morro d’Alba DOC. He began with only a few hectares and now crafts 4 different wines all from the Lacrima grape. Today the estate has increased to a total of 18 hectares and Mario’s son Paolo works by his side “to carry the family tradition into the next decades”.

Winemaking: Grapes are from vines 15-30 years in ages, in clay soil at 180/220 meters [590/755 feet] in elevation. Aged for 3 months in stainless steel tanks, then an additional 3 months in the bottle.

Tasting Notes: Inky red-violet in colour with emphatic aromas of strawberry, cherry and warm summer earth. Jammy strawberry, raspberry, cherry and a floral streak are complimented by good acidity and dry tannins. Dark chocolate and tobacco linger between each sip. Packed with plush, rich flavour, however it’s light on its feet and easy drinking.

The label is a limited edition, “quarter century” design entitled #LucchettiPopWines.

100% Lacrima
Lacrima di Morro d’Alba DOC
Produced by Azienda Agricola Mario Lucchetti
13.5% Alcohol
$15 [average price]
Enjoy now thru 2018

Statti Gaglioppo Calabria 2011

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Since 1700, the Baron Statti family has been living and farming on the same 500 hectares of land in the Calabria region of southern Italy. Today, under the leadership of Alberto and Antonio Statti, the estate is one of the top wine producers in Calabria, focusing on a blend of their tradition, native varietals and technological innovation. With an emphasis on their bond with the land, they believe “that a great wine, as well as the nice one, born, first of all, into the vineyard”.

Dark red-violet in colour with intriguing aromas of fennel, cherry and candied violets. Aged in stainless steel to preserve fruit purity, bright cherry and raspberry flavours joined Indian spices and smooth tannins. Licorice, smoky herbs and hints of dense black cherry lingered compellingly between each sip. Engaging and expressive, this is a fantastic companion at the table.

100% Gaglioppo
Estate Bottled by Cantine Statti
13% Alcohol
Enjoy now thru 2015

Rated 89 points by Wine Spectator

Conti di Buscareto Lacrima di Morro d’Alba 2011

A snowy, blustery evening found both my husband and myself feeling as though we were coming down with colds. My solution was to make a healthy soup with heirloom carrots and parsnips, and open a hearty bottle of wine. The Conti di Buscareto estate was founded in 2002 by Enrico Giacomelli and Claudio Gabellini, wine lovers and entrepreneurs with a vision of rediscovering native Marche varietals, and to “produce wine with a new, modern method”. Morra d’Alba is located in the Marche region on the eastern coast of Italy, it is the nearby village where the Lacrima vineyards are. Lacrima translates to “tears” in Italian and is thought to refer to the fact that the grape’s skin weeps drops of juice when it is fully ripe. [Hence the apt tear depicted on the label.]

Dark violet in colour with abundant aromas of candied violets, dark berries and earth. Blackberry, cranberry and floral notes comprised the full body, whilst smoky earth and meaty elements lingered lavishly between each sip. With an engaging contrast of delicate floral notes and dense meaty flavours, this is a focused glass that will keep you reaching for more.

100% Lacrima
Morro d’Alba/Marche
Bottled in Ostra by Conti di Buscareto S.R.L.
13% Alcohol
Enjoy now thru 2018

Fontezoppa ‘Dirosaetdiviola’ Lacrima Nera 2008

Fontezoppa ‘Dirosaetdiviola’ Lacrima Nera 2008 arrived a few months back as part of one of the wine clubs I had been signed up for. It could probably stand to cellar for another year or so, but after enjoying a Gaglioppo [Lacrima Nera] at Otto Enoteca a couple of weeks ago, I was eager to give it a pour. Cantina Fontezoppa is located in what is considered to be one of the best vineyard sites in the Marche regions, between the towns of Serrapetrona and San Severino. Giovanni Basso has been growing grapes for over 20 years and always produces wines “of traditional character that respect the territory”. The grapes for the Dirosaetdiviola were sourced from 25 year old vines located 500-600 meters above the Adriatic Sea.

Inky red-violet in colour with aromas of cherry, olive and hints of funky barnyard. Tart cherry, red currant, and blackberry flavours gave way to spicy black peppercorn, balsamic and traces of baked blueberry in the moderate finish. This is a well-balanced multi-layered glass that doesn’t want to be over analyzed; it is content to just be enjoyed along with your favourite pizza or pasta.

100% Lacrima Nera [Gaglioppo]
Estate Bottled by Azienda Agroforestale Fontezoppa di Piero Luzi & C. Soc. Agr. In A.S.
13.5% Alcohol
Enjoy now thru 2017

Forgotten Grapes at Otto Enoteca

Last Saturday I attended the “Forgotten Grapes” Wine tasting at Otto Enoteca in NYC. It was a fantastic tasting and class led by Sommelier Dan Pucci that focused on a handful of wonderful yet rare, obscure Italian grapes. One of the featured grapes was Schiava [or Vernatsch] which is one of my favourite grapes, another was Pigato, a grape I had never tried and now have fallen in love with and will scour the shops for more. Following are the truly amazing bottles we had, for the Schiava, Gumphof Südtiroller Vernatsch click here.

Alberto Tedeschi Col Fondo 2010
Emilia Romagna
Col Fondo is a made in the traditional manner, bottle-fermented, lees-aged Prosecco. The wine is natural, unfiltered, with only natural yeasts used and no sulphur added.
Cloudy, opaque pale yellow [it spends a lot of time with the yeasts] with a fizzy apple cider-like flavour and a funky, earthy, bitter finish. [What I would imagine if Prosecco and Hefeweizen had a kid.]

Poderi Foglia Falanghina 2010 $20
Produced from old vines with sunny aromas of lemon and hay, flavours of lemon zest and apple blossom run atop a bright acidity, all supported by a smoky, basalt mineral base.

Poggio dei Gorleri ‘Cycnus’ 2011 $22
Pigato is distinct to Liguria and is thought to be the cousin of Vermentino. The steep hillside vineyards are located just to the east of Provence on French-Italian border.
Almost creamy honey and sea salt minerals cushioned angular flavours of green papaya and mango, whilst clean vegetal notes and honeysuckle comprised the crisp finish. Fantastically easy drinking, a wonderful companion for shellfish and light summer dishes.


San Francesco Ronco dei Quattroventi Ciro’ Rosso 2005 $23
[Gaglioppo] Calabria
Brick garnet in colour with dates and baked black cherry flavours merging into a spicy finish of black pepper, licorice, and tobacco. With a light body, this is an excellent red for summer.

Podere il Palazzino Grosso Sanese Chianti Classico 1998 $37
Was intended for immediate enjoyment, yet it still displays a sound acidic backbone and has aged wonderfully. A well balanced undercurrent of barnyard and forest supported dense raisin and baked plum flavours, whilst warm leather and traces of smoky oak comprised the plush finish.

Caffo Del Capo Amaro $23
Crafted from an ancient Caffo family recipe using traditional methods, Vecchio Amaro del Capo is produced with 29 different Calabrian aromatic herbs and roots, such as juniper, chamomile and bitter orange, many known for their tonic and digestive properties.
Hearty, earthy notes of autumn woods, fresh herbs and baking spices, with sweet honey, cinnamon bark and bitter orange lingering invigoratingly between each velvety sip.