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What We Drank Last Week: Quarantine Chronicles, Volume 4

Updated: Jun 18, 2020

We've had another exciting week in wine! Looking at the partial lineup below, you might think that we were quarantined in Italy - even the white from California was an Italian varietal. Wouldn't it be nice if you could learn the language by drinking the wine?  

2010 Andretti, Brunello di Montalcino Riserva (Tuscany, Italy)

2018 Mastroberardino, Lacryma Christi del Vesuvio (Campania, Italy)

2019 RYME, Vermintino "Hers" Carneros (California, USA)

2018 Costamolino, Vermentino di Sardegna (Sardinia, Italy)

2013 Castelli del Grevepesa, Chianti Classico "Panzano" Gran Selezione (Tuscany, Italy)

2017 Luigi Einaudi, Dogliani (Piedmont, Italy)

Not pictured, but enjoyed:

2015 Quinto do Covão, Reserva Touriga Nacional (Dão, Portugal)

2018, Gabrielle Collection, Rosé of Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley (California, USA)

Looking back on these wines only serves to remind us how diverse the wines are from Italy. There are 350 varietals that are currently authorized by the Italian government, and another 500 documented varietals currently being produced in Italy. It's rather daunting to try to learn about them all, but we will keep trying! 

Our favorite of the week was clear - the 2010 Brunello di Montalcino. We enjoyed this wine after a two-hour decant and it was beautiful. In the glass, this wine showed the slight lightening of color that is typical of red wines as they age. The nose was full and expressive, with notes of dried cherry and leather. And on the palate? Heaven. This 100% Sangiovese wine is drinking beautifully right now, with a smooth integration of flavors and tannins that are well-balanced. At 10 years old, this Brunello is still relatively young, and could easily age much longer, but it sure is drinking well now. We had this with grilled sausage and ciambotta (Italian vegetable stew) for a great pairing. We topped it all off with an incredible homemade tiramisu (thanks to our good friends Gino and Belinda), and we were all happy campers.

Although this Brunello took the top step for us this week, the other wines in the lineup were all truly fantastic, as each one was full of character and life. A special shout out has to go to the Vermintino from RYME Cellars based in Sonoma. This wine was terrific. We had a tasting at their tiny operation in Forestville in the summer of 2019 and were captivated by their wines. Ryan and Megan (RY-ME) have a clear passion for their wines and it shows in each of their bottlings - each one is incredibly distinct and memorable. If you are in the area and are seeking an "un-Napa-like" tasting experience, we highly recommend arranging a visit with them.

What were your memorable bottles from last week? Cheers from both of us at Vinovistas to you!

RYME, 2019

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