2008 Marco Marengo Barolo Brunate Annata

2008 Marco Marengo Barolo Brunate Annata

2008 M. Marengo BaroloKnew as soon as I sniffed this wine that it’d be right up my alley. Garnet in the glass, the earthy aromas were sweetened with dark fruit. In the mouth, it’s round and velvety with plummy, dark cherry flavors with mocha notes.

Pairings: Pasta with meaty sauce, duck, roasted mushrooms

Style: Red Wine

Grape Type(s): Nebbiolo

Region: Piedmont, Barolo, Italy

Price: $60

2005 Podere Rocche dei Manzoni Barolo Vigna d’la Roul

2005 Podere Rocche dei Manzoni Barolo Vigna d’la Roul

2005 Podere Rocche dei Manzoni Barolo Vigna d’la RoulThis wine was aerated then decanted for an hour prior to tasting. In the glass, it’s deep garnet. Bouquet wasn’t as prominent as I’d expected. Light aromas of cherry cordial with earthy notes. In the mouth, it offers great fruit flavors with black licorice, leather and blackberry notes. Smokey finish with the tannins one would expect from such a young wine.

I’d like to try this wine with another 5 years of aging. 94 points Robert Parker.

Pairings: Game, beef, duck, pasta with mushroom or red sauce, cheese course

Style: Red wine

Grape Type(s): Nebbiolo

Region: Piedmont, Italy

Around $100

2007 Tolaini Al Passo Toscana

2007 Tolaini Al Passo Toscana

2007 Tolaini Al Passo ToscanaBrick red in the glass, this Italian red wine offers intense aromas of cherries, fresh dirt, leather and mocha. This full-bodied Super Tuscan tastes of ripe dark berries, anise and chocolate and offers a silky mouth feel. Long, spiced finish with light tannins.

Pairings: Grilled beef or lamb, sautéed mushrooms.

Style: Red Wine

Grape Type(s): Super Tuscan Blend of 80% Sangiovese and 20% Merlot

Region: Tuscany, Italy

Price: $25

2008 Allegrini Palazzo Della Torre

2008 Allegrini Palazzo Della Torre

In the glass, this affordable Italian wine is inky red. On the nose, it is bold with ripe cherries and dried cranberry aromas. Just hard to stop sniffing in order to take a sip.

In the mouth, it has blackberry and dried fig flavors with licorice and leathery notes. The 2008 Allegrini Palazzo Della Torre has great balance and nice level of acidity. Finish is long and spicy.

90 points Wine Spectator.

Pairings: Pasta with red sauce, deeply-roasted meats, cheese course.

Style: Red Wine

Grape Type(s): Corvina Veronese, Rondinella and Sangiovese

Region: Valpolicella, Italy

Price: $17

2009 Poggio alle Sughere Morellino di Scansano

2009 Poggio alle Sughere Morellino di Scansano

This Italian wine is dark purple in the glass. It offers aromas of dark, ripe cherries and Chinese five spice and flavors of stone fruit and dark berries with hints of leather. Soft tannins with a nice level of acidity.

Lovers of Chianti will enjoy this affordable Sangiovese.

Pairings:  Grilled beef, cured meats and cheese platter, pasta with red sauce.

Style: Red

Grape Type(s): Sangiovese (90%) and Cabernet Sauvignon (10%)

Region: Tuscany, Italy

Price: $20

Pasqua Treviso Extra Dry Prosecco

Pasqua Treviso Extra Dry Prosecco

This is just one of those affordable sparkling wines that is great as an aperitif and also paired with food.

This Prosecco is golden in the glass with tons of tiny bubbles.  On the nose, it offers big fruity aromas and in the mouth it’s creamy, foamy with bubbles with a very dry, pleasant finish.

Pairings:  Bubbly pairs well with many things ranging from a cheese and cold cut platter to lobster to beef tenderloin to dessert.

Style: Sparkling

Grape Type(s): Prosecco

Region: Veneto, Italy

Around $10

 

2010 Villa Calcinaia Comitale Grechetto

2010 Villa Calcinaia Comitale Grechetto

Had this wine with both lobster pasta and grilled Branzino and it complimented the dishes perfectly.

In the glass, this Tuscan wine is pale yellow with a slight greenish tint.  On the nose, it’s very faint, almost non-existent.  In the mouth, it’s delicate with fruity aromas of green apple and pear with bright acidity for a crisp finish.   Really enjoyable.

Pairings:  Seafood, grilled fish or chicken.  Pasta with olive oil and garlic.

Style: White

Grape Type(s): 90% Grechetto and 10% Vernaccia

Region: Tuscany, Italy

Around $15

 

2005 Fattoria La Lecciaia Brunello Di Montalcino

2005 Fattoria La Lecciaia Brunello Di Montalcino

Bought a 2-pound porterhouse steak to share with my guy last week and wanted a special wine to pair with it.  The 2005 Fattoria La Lecciaia Brunello Di Montalcino fit the bill beautifully.

On the nose, this Italian wine is an explosion of ripe dark berries and Bing cherries with earthy notes.  On the palate, this full-bodied wine is big and beautiful.  Lots of ripe blackberry and stone fruit flavors laced with exotic spices, almost chewy in consistency with classic Brunello silkiness.  The finish is long with a little pepper to end a great sip.

Pairings:  Grilled red meat, slowly-simmered red sauce.

Style: Red

Grape Type(s): Sangiovese

Region: Tuscany, Italy

Around $30

 

2009 Coltibuono Chianti Classico

2009 Coltibuono Chianti Classico

This Italian wine is vibrant red in the glass.  The 2009 Coltibuono Chianti Classico offer spiced red berries on the nose and big berry flavors on the palate with a little chocolate and some earthiness.  Nice level of acidity and long, pleasant finish.

Pairings:  Pasta and red sauce. Grilled meats.

Style: Red

Grape Type(s): Sangiovese

Region: Tuscany, Italy

Around $15.

 

2010 Arnaldo Caprai Grecante Grechetto Colli Martani

2010 Arnaldo Caprai Grecante Grechetto Colli Martani

I had the pleasure of sipping this wine last week, first, paired with oysters on the half shell, then, with seared halibut atop risotto.  This grape was new to me and I loved it both as an aperitif and as a food-friendly wine.  Think – unoaked Chardonnay meets Sauvignon Blanc.

In the glass, it is golden yellow and just very pretty.  On the nose, it offers bright floral, fruity notes.  On the palate, there are layers of ripe honeydew melon, peach and papaya matched with a nice level of acidity.  The finish is long and dry.

At this price point, it is a great white that everyone will enjoy.

Pairings:  Sauteed halibut or cod. Raw oysters, clams or mussels.

Style: White

Grape Type(s): Grechetto

Region: Umbria, Italy

Around $20

This wine was provided to me for sampling and I am adding to my repertoire as it is truly enjoyable.