Friday, June 18, 2010

My Picks: Vintages On-Line Exclusives -- June 18

Here’s my shopping list for this week’s Vintages On-Line Exclusives Release.  The folks at Vintages were late with this week's release.  Watching World Cup matches can be a real time sucker, eh?

GUICCIARDINI STROZZI CUSONA 1933 2008, DOCG Vernaccia di San Gimignano (Tuscany, Italy); #172726; 13% ABV; $25
They used to say that Vernaccia di San Gimignano was the only good white wine from Italy. No longer true, bit here’s a chance to find out why that used to be the case. 100% Vernaccia, a local varietal. Known for crisp acidity and a nicely bitter finish. In this case, they concentrate the flavours by drying the grapes before fermentation.

MAYOR DE ONDARRE RESERVA 2004, DOCa Rioja (Spain); #169094; 13% ABV; $22
A blend of Tempranillo and Mazuelo (Carinena). Four weeks in fermentation vats with pumping over daily. Malolactic fermentation. It’s Reserva so that’s 3 years of aging, at least one year in oak casks. Decanting recommended.

PLANETA COMETA 2008, IGT Sicilia (Italy); #031047; 14% ABV; $35
100% Fiano, one of those superb white varietals from the south of Italy. This one is from a relatively new winery in Sicily. Fermented in stainless steel. Look for exotic fruits, dried herbs, and minerality. Should be excellent with seafood.

RAMÓN BILBAO LIMITED EDITION CRIANZA 2006, DOCa Rioja (Spain); #168666; 14% ABV; $18
100% Tempranillo, aged 14 months in American oak, followed by 8 months in the bottle before release. A classic Rioja red. One of their vineyards is La Cañada, so why not?

TENUTA DI SESTA 2007, DOC Rosso di Montalcino (Italy); #172775; 14% ABV; $22
Here’s another chance to pick up Rosso di Montalcino from a great vintage. Hooked on Chianti? Try this instead. Made from Sangiovese Grosso, the same varietal used to make the “older brother”: Brunello. Manuel harvest. Aged for 10 months in 20-hectolitre Slovenian oak barrels, 2 months in stainless steel vats, and two months in bottle.  Ready to drink now.

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