Showing posts with label Barbaresco. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Barbaresco. Show all posts

Tuesday, September 28, 2021

A Brief History of Italian Wine





AMARONE Producer Owners of BOTTEGA del VINO


People have enjoyed drinking wine for thousands of years ever since its ancient origins in Mesopotamia, near present-day Iran. Italian and French wines are among the best and Italy is the largest producer of wine. This makes sense because the Romans made the most contributions to the ancient art of viniculture.

The Greeks, who settled in southern Italy and Sicily, exported the art of wine-growing to Italy. They were so impressed with the mild Italian climate which was perfect for producing wines that they called Italy, Oenotria, or the land of trained vines.

The Etruscans, who settled in central Italy, also produced wines. The Romans improved the techniques that the Greeks and Etruscans used.

Demand for wine increased greatly with the population explosion in Rome from 300B.C. to the beginning of the Christian era. It increased to over one million people and, as even the slaves drank wine, much more wine had to be produced.

The Romans loved their wine, drinking it with every meal. However, as the alcohol content was stronger than ours, they mixed it with large quantities of water. They preferred sweet wine and strangely enough their most prized wine was white. This came from the area that they thought was the best wine-growing region, the Falernian region near Naples.

Unusual flavors were often added to the wine. The Romans liked to mix honey with this drink to make an aperitif called mulsum. They often added herbs and spices, but were known to mix wine with salt water which must have given it an extremely bitter taste. Even chalk was sometimes mixed with wine to reduce acidity!

The many contributions the Romans made to the art of wine-growing included using props and trellises, improving the Greek presses used for extracting juice, classifying which grapes grew best in which climate, and increasing the yields.

The Romans exhibited good taste by deciding that aged wines tasted better and preferred wines that were ten to twenty-five years old. They discovered that wines which were kept in tightly closed containers improved with age and became the first to store it in wooden barrels. They may also have been the first to use glass jars and they also used corks.

They exported their excellent wine-growing techniques to other areas of Europe and these were not changed for centuries. But demand for wine decreased with the fall of the Roman Empire. Surprisingly Roman Catholic monks continued to produce wine during the Dark Ages but it only became popular again during the Renaissance.

During the nineteenth and twentieth centuries Italian wine was often criticized for its poor quality and the government decided that steps had to be taken. DOCG or new wine regulations were introduced to improved the quality of the wine.

Today Italian wines are considered by critics to be amongst the best in the world. As there are twenty different regions to choose from, each with different varieties, it is never difficult to find a fine Italian wine!






Sunday, May 16, 2021

Maccheroni Pasta Peppers Recipe


Rosina making homemade Maccheroni Pasta

In Calabria




Saturday, February 29, 2020

The Perfect Barolo

Luigi Einaudi  BAROLO "CANUBI" 2015

"This was my Pick for TOP WINE of The Entire Show"


February 28, 2020

Yes the Barolo Canubi 2015 produced by the wine estate of Luigi Einaudi absolutely blew me away. It was absolutely incredible, and what I would describe as the perfect Barolo. "Yes it was." Still is. Wow, I couldn't believe it, right out of the gate, the first wine of the day as I sauntered into the Metropolitan Pavilion on 18th Street. The doors weren't open yet, but I wrangled by way in for some early tasting before the crowds  came.  I have for the past 12 years or so gone in one hour before the trade, as as a journalist they let you in an hour before everyone else, but this year they change their policy. The lady at the registration desk asked me if I wanted to go to The Master Class Seminar which was starting at 1:30, it was now 1:15 and the doors officially weren't opening until 2 o'clock, 45 minutes away. "I wanted in now," so I told, yes, I wanted to go to the seminar, and I did, but changed my mind once I went in and started tasting some lovely Italian Wine. Oh they were great this year, much better than the few years past. I absolutely adored some of the wines I tasted today (yesterday), starting with "The Most Perfect Barolo of All," the Luigi Einaudi BAROLO "CANUBI" 2015 ... Yes it was that good, and yes it was perfect. The wine, everything was in perfect balance: the fruit, the tannins, acidity, the weight, it was "The Perfect Barolo" and one I'll never forget. Barolo's just do not get any better than the one I had yesterday at tre Bicchieri New York 2020, I was literally in 7th Heaven.

Over the years I have been quite fortunate to have drinking numerous vintage of Cannubi Barolo from all of the wine producers who make Barolo Cannubi from vineyard plots that they own on this one of the Barolo regions most famous hills. I have for some time loved Barolo from the 1996 vintage which is my own personal favorite Barolo vintage of them all, even more so than the more highly acclaimed 2000 and 2001 Vintages of Barolo. I have tasted my friend Alberto Chiarlo's Michele Chiarlo Barolo Canubi of several vintages as well as those of Paolo Scavino, Marchesi di Barolo (my 1st ever Cannubi tasted), Francesco Rinaldi 96 (Awesome!) and more. And now after drinking this wonderful Einaudi Barolo Cannubie 2015 it easily ranks up there with the best Barolo Cannubi I've ever tasted, and may very well be my favorite one of all. It certainly was my favorite wine of all those I tasted at Tre Bicchieri 2020, and as of those that I didn't get around to tasting, and there's no one person who could taste every wine at the show, I'm very sure that even if I did taste every single wine there, there is not a one that could possibly be better, "I'm sure this was the Best!"

Basta !

Luigi Einaudi Estate

Serralunga d' Alba

This Gets My Vote for BEST in SHOW 


Poderi Luigi Einaudi BAROLO CANNUBI 2025







"JUST for the FUN of IT"


Monday, January 6, 2014


94 on a 100 Point Scale

Barolo Aldo Conterno "Cicala" 2001 ...  It's a classic Barolo from one of Barolo's finest producers, Aldo Conterno .. Cicala is a single -vineyard Barolo .. I'll take this oportunity for those who may not know, a single-vineyard wine is one in which all the fruit that goes into that particular wine comes from one sight-specific vineyard area .. These single vineyard vineyards are located on an estate in small plot that has the best growing conditions for wine within a larger area .. The sight is usually special because it gets the best sun light and is usually on a southern faceing vineyard, possibly on a hill and has good drainage and other terrain elements beneficial to maximum grap growing ...
  Back to the Aldo Conterno Barolo Cicala 2001 .. As we've already stated, Aldo Conterno is a great Barolo producer and this wine comes from a famous single-vineyard .. Now moving on to the vintage, 2001 in Barolo and Barbaresc was one of the greatest Barolo vintages ever, along with 2000, 1996, 1989, 1990 and others ..
   We opened a couple a few bottles at this party, and they were all in great condition, properly cellared for the whole of their lives. Decanted, the color and aroma were marvelous and no signs of any faults such as Bret, oxidation, be cooked or corked. Yes the bottles were in excellent conditon. The aromas were classic Barolo as was the taste, of which the wine had many marvels, including; Alcohol Soaked Cherries, Truffle, tar, and Licorice .. I loved the wine, one of the finest Barolo's I have ever tasted and I've tasted many running the Inoteca at Del Posto, Bar Cichetti and Barbetta Wine Director for 4 1/2 years were I tasted the likes of Ceretto Bricco Rocche Barolo 1990,  Renato Ratti Barolo Riserva 1990, Marcarini Barolo Brunat 1996, Bartolo Mascarello Barolo 1996, 97 and 1990, Gaja Barolo "Sperss" 1990, Giacamo Conterno Monfortino 1978  1989 1990, and Cavolotto Barolo Bricco Boschis 1990 and 1996. Mascarello barolo "Monprivato" 1990 1989 & 1996 just to name a few of the many I have had over the years ... With all this said and done, I'll tell you this Conterno Barolo "Cicala" 2001 is the best Barolo I've had in the past 5 years or so, and I'd deffinately rank it way up there with all the great Barolo I've tasted over the years including many from the great 1989 1990 1996 1997 2000 and 2001 vintages .. I'd rate this Cicala 2001 about a 93 on a 100 point scale if I was forced to do so .. But my best way of describing this or any great wine is; that I Loved it, I couldn't get enough of it and wanted more, when all was gone. The wine was memorable and a joyous pleasure to drink. Bravo Ado!

Daniel Bellino Zwicke

photo Daniel Bellino-Zwicke

Friday, September 19, 2008

Picture Perfect Barbaresco from Cortese

Tiziana Cortese with a bottle of her families great Barbaresco Rabaja Riserva 2001
right; Daniel Bellino Zwicke with one of Italy's "Greatest Winemakers" Vittorio Fiore holding a bottle of his famed
"Il Carbonaione" 2004

Tiziana Cortese was in town with 2 selections of Barbaresco from her families vineyards in Peidmonte. Both Barbaresco examples from Cortese are from their Vineyards on the fame site of Rabaja.

Cortese Barbaresco Rabaja 2003 blew my mind when I tasted it. This wine is a "Text Book Perfect Example" of what Barbaresco should taste like, but very often does not. This Barbaresco is "Elegant" with just the right amount of concentration of fruit and body to give it some fullness without it being manipulated or overly concentrated. The weight of the wine, as of the aromas, and flavor palette was absolutely perfect, "could not get any better. Is it apparent I LOVED this wine?" The wine has wonderful Red Berry and Violet aromas in the nose. In the mouth, the Barbaresco "Rabaja" Cortese 2003, tasted of Raspberry and Violets with nice hints of leather and Spice with nice firm tannins that linger to a long finish.

The Cortese Barbaresco Rabaja 2003 is a "Absolute Stunner" that I rate a 97 on a 100 point scale. "Yes, it's that GOOD!" Grab some if you can.

Cortese Barbaresco Rabaja Riserva 2001 is quite a gem as well. It has just been released after 4o months aging in large Slovenian Cask (where all Barolo and Barbaresco should be age, not in 225 liter Barriques that "Ruin" the wine), with a additional 3 years in bottle before being put on the market. I will paraphrase the WB tasting notes as they perfectly describe the wine;

"An ethereal bouquet of plums, prunes, cinnamon, cocoa, tobacco, leather, and spice. Dry and full-bodied, with robust flavors developing on the palate and subsequently unveiling this wines very solid structures." I will add that it is a joy to drink, will age well, and rates a impressive 93.

by Daniel Bellino Zwicke