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Tuesday 25 May 2010
Ok, we live here, and we know Umbrian wines are fantastic. But we don’t expect you to take our word for it.
Robert Parker wrote in ‘The Wine Advocate’ issue 152:
"... Montefalco Rosso, which shows much Sangiovese redcurrant fruit and floral notes on the nose and a firm, ample, and ripe palate, has an important continuity from the attack to the solid finish. "
He also wrote in issue 164:
"... Montefalco Sagrantino, warm, ripe, and intense, offers raspberry fruit and an important spiciness in a packed and mouth-filling format, dense and solid in its flow and with a rising warmth, amplitude, and breadth on the finish. It will easily last another 15 years."
Here’s what’s written on page 243 of Dorling Kindersley’s Wines of the World (2006):
"The beefy entry level Montefalco Rosso DOC is an earthy-tasting wine which these days is often softened by a drop of Merlot. One step up, there is also a full-bodied Rosso Riserva which delivers the authentic Central Italy wood-aged style at a fraction of the cost of its Tuscan counterparts."
The superstar, however, is the immensely powerful Sagrantino di Montefalco DOCG. Sagrantino is a grape variety which grows only in this corner of Umbria.
It is a wine with a heady aroma of blackberries and toffee apple, and with massive tannins that need at least three or four years to mellow, especially since the top producers give their wines the full new oak treatment.
And this is from Gambero Rosso (2009) Slow Food Edition’s section on Italian Wines regarding one particular Sagrantino di Montefalco:
"The ’05 growing year has produced a wine that alternates very complex nuances of forest fruits with earthiness and refined spices. The palate unfolds confident and tangy, showing breadth, unrivalled depth and perfect tannins. This is a Sagrantino with balance and refinement, stamped by its territory of origin and also by a truly distinctive style."
And this from the same book, in 2008:
"...a marvellous interpretation of the variety that is almost stunning for its bouquet, packed with blackberry tightly wrapped in pungent, balsam-like medicinal herbs and lush spices. The palate fulfils that promise: spacious and deep, dense-packed yet dynamic, with a ultra-luxe skein of tannins. Still young, of course, it will reveal its true soul down the years...."
My Sagrantino di Montefalco DOCG hasn’t been opened yet (but it will be very soon). Uhm, do you want to taste it?