Home | Recent Tastings | Wine Touring | Cellars | What's New

by Tom Hill

A self-admitted wine geek, Tom lives in Northern New Mexico and works as a computational physicist at Los Alamos National Laboratory doing numerical neutron transport & large scale code development. He has been tasting wines since 1971, participates locally with a couple of large tasting groups in his area, and is practically a fixture at most California wine festivals, such as the Hospice du Rhône, Rhône Rangers, and ZAP. Other interests: Tom is heavily into competitive sport fencing (foil & epee), biking, cooking, basketball, skiing, backpacking, mountain climbing.

Some Italian Whites - July 18, 2007


We tasted the other night (7/18/07) Some Italian Whites:

  1. Argicolas Costamolino DOC: Vermintino di Sardegna (13.5%) 2005: Light yellow color; rather
    stony/earthy/minerally bit floral/peach aromatic nose; fairly rich peach/floral/gardenias bit metallic rather hard/stony/minerally flavor; med.long peach/floral some stony/minerally finish; quite a nice vermentino for the price. $12.50
  2. Antica Az.Agr. PaolaBea SantaChiara (Grechetto/Malvasia/Chard/Sauvignon/Garganega; 13.5%) Montefalco 2004: Med.gold color; bit burnt marshmallow rather charred/burnt/toasty/oak
    some earthy bit floral/muscat nose; soft quite floral/muscatty lush rather charred/toasty/burnt/oak slight metallic flavor; long rich/lush some metallic very ripe some floral/muscat finish; a ton of charred oak w/ some pretty floral notes creeping out; bit pricey but at kinda inrteresting. $35.00
  3. Vie di Romans Dessimis PinotGrigio DOC: FriuliIsonzo (14%; www.VieDiRomans.It) 2005:
    Med.gold color; rather caramel/butterscotchy/oak pleasant earthy slight appley/floral/perfumed nose; soft very rich/lush toasty/butterscotchy/oak some appley/floral/perfumed flavor; quite long/lingering caramel/oak creamy/textured appley/floral finish; a Chard wannabe and slammed w/ new oak; very international style. Too pricey at $35.00
  4. EdmundsStJohn WittersVnyd/ElDoradoCnty PinotGrigio (12.7%;www.EdmundsStJohn.com) 2005: Pale yellow color; light appley some earthy/dusty quiet/gentle pleasant nose; tart fairly
    rich/textured earthy/perfumed talc some appley flavor; med.long tart appley slight earthy/dusty finish; a quiet/understated PG that should improve. Well priced at $17.00
  5. Marco Donati Nosiola Bianco SoleAlto DOC Trentino (12%) 2004: Med.gold color; lovely
    floral/fragrant/white peach almost muscatty very perfumed/aromatic nose; soft very floral/
    spicy/fresh white peach almost muscat-like slight chalky/minerally flavor; very long/lush
    very floral/spicy/white peach finish w/ touch of minerality; a beautiful fragrant/perfumed
    white at a great price. $15.00
  6. Conti Sertoli Salis Torre della Sirena IGT: Terrazza Retiche di Sondrio (2 native red skin
    grapes; Frmtd: 80% StainlessSteel, 20% American oak; 12.5%) 2004
    : Med.gold color; very
    strong rotted apple/very ripe/overripe/late hrvst slight oxidized nose; soft very ripe/overripe rotted apple/piney slight oxidized flavor; very long overripe/rotted apple finish; loads of overripe/rotted apple character; rather bizarre wine. $24.00
  7. Devri-Pax Sauvignon Qualitatswein trocken Region: Luttenberg/Slovenia (12.5%)
    Ljutomer-Ormoz-Jeruzalem/Erich Krutzler 2005
    : Light gold color; very strong cat pee/SB some
    citrus/grapefruit bit pungent/metallic/Kansas outhouse nose; very tart cat pee/grapefruity Kansas outhouse pungent/assertive flavor; long very cat pee/Kansas outhouse/pungent some grapefruity finish; pretty intense wine, not altogether pleasant, but somewhat interesting nonetheless. $17.00
  8. Gravner Amfora IGT Venezia Giulia RibollaGialla WW (12%) 2001: Deep gold slight browning
    color; slight oxidized very intense very perfumed/aromatic/honeyed some mead-like very exotic bit piney/resiny/Retsina-like very ripe fruit complex/exotic nose; soft very exotic very intense/complex resiny/mead/honeyed very perfumey flavor; very long honey comb/honeyed/mead-like bit piney/ resiny exotic finish; some like an Ygrec or Kalin Semillon; way out there on the bizarre scale; overpriced at $100.00
  9. EdiKante DOC: MalvasiaCarso (12.5%) 2001: Med.gold color; bit ozone/graphite/WWII beacon/
    carbon arc projector rather floral/muscatty slight cat pee lovely exotic nose; tart/rich/intense some muscatty very floral/honeyed exotic flavor; very long/lingering intense muscatty/malvasia very floral/honeyed finish; plenty of malvasia character w/a lot ofother exotic elements; another bizarity at a more reasonable price. $35.00
  10. Curran SantaYnezVlly/SBC GWT (14.1%; www.CurranWines.com) 2006: Pale yellow color; lovely hair oil/GWT/spicy very lychee very aromatic/perfumed nose; very tart huge hair oil/
    lychee/GWT spicy dry/acid/clean flavor; very long lychee/hair oil/GWT dry/tart slightly bitter finish; a big/intense very varietal GWT; maybe a bit too intense. $26.00
  11. deTarczal DOC: Trentino Muller-Thurgau (12.0%) 2003: Med.gold color; some earthy rather
    valve oil/fusel oil aromatic almost Muscat quite perfumed nose; very dry rather floral/JR-like bit piney/valve oil quite perfumed/floral flavor; long some fusel oil/piney/resiny quite floral/perfumed finish; almost Mosel-like/slatey in character; quite a lovely wine at a very good price. $16.00
  12. Laimberg DOC: Sudtirol GWT AltoAdige TraminerAromatico (14%; www.Laimburg.It/CantinaVini) 2003: Med.gold color; more subtle/low-key very spicy/GWT bit
    earthy/minerally nose; tart dry bit minerally/earthy very spicy/GWT austere zippy flavor; med.long tart/dry minerally/stoney austere very spicy/GWT finish; some like a Trimbach in character; a lovely/spicy/dry GWT at a very attractive price. $18.00
  13. Stiftskellerei Neustift Abbazia di Novacella GWT DOC: AltoAdige ValleIsarco GWT (14.5%)
    : Med.gold color; very intense GWT/lychee very perfumed/aromatic quite spicy slight earthy/ minerally classic GWT perfumey nose; tart very perfumed/fragrant lychee/GWT very spicy/nutmeg some minerally flavor; very long/lingering very spicy/cinammon/nutmeg very strong lychee/GWT bit minerally flavor; a lovely classic GWT that should go 10 yrs or more; fairly priced at $28.00.
  14. JazuzziFamilyVnyds Calif PinotGrigio (12.5%) 2002: Med.gold color; rather oxidized/late
    harvesty/overripe/rotted apple some piney/resiny low fruit nose; soft candied/pineapply/cheap bananna candy/overripe/late harvesty some oxidized flavor;(mercifully) short candied/overripe/late harvesty pineapply finish; a clumsy/overripe wine w/ no PG character. Kevin's mystery wine.

And the usual nonsense from TheBloodyPulpit:

1. Nosiola: This was my first real exposure to a pure Nosiola. I was quite taken by this wine;
it had an unusual ethereal fragrance. They should plant this in Calif where they could
make the world's greatest Nosiolas.
2. Many of these wines came from Roberto's WineExpo in SantaMonica; a terrific source of very interesting Italian wines, some of which can border on the bizarre, but always interesting.
3. Salis Torre della Sirena: Made from Rossola and Pignola Valtellinese grape varieties, two
native red varieties. This was not exactly what I expected. It had that late harvesty
character of grapes left way long on the vine, sorta like fallen apples on the ground thru
the Winter under a covering of snow. Hard to believe it was only 12.5%. A rather strange
wine that I kinda liked once I dropped my preconcieved notions of what it was. Their WebSite
has some spectacular vnyd pics, but doesn't give a whole lot of detail about the wine. Roberto??
4. Gravner: My first experience w/ a Josko Gravner wine. These wines are made in amphorae
buried in the ground, extended skin maceration, no SO2, by techniques used centuries
ago in Georgia. To call the wine bizarre is an understatement. Like people, I can usually
find some sort of redeeming feature in any wine. I rather liked the wine (most of the
group did not) once I threw out all my pre-concieved notions of what a white wine should
be like. It had a sort-of oxidized character, not like sherry, but more like a mead.
To call the wine overpriced is also an understatement. But it is an experience worth
trying once in your life. Gravner, Kante, Radikon, and Randall are all a bit of a nut case.
The world needs more of those kind of folks.
5. Curran GWT: This wine is pretty scarce, but NM managed to land a few cases. It is one of
the best Calif GWTs I've had in quite some time, primarily because it is dry. Too many of the Calif GWTs are finished w/ residual sugar, supposedly to cover up the bitterness on the
palate that is supposedly a character in GWT. I guess I'd rather have a bit of bitterness
than have a cloying GWT that tires the palate.
6. AltoAdige GWT: This has now become my favorite source of GWT wines. The wines are much more food-friendly I find than many of today's Alsatian GWTs. They remind me of Alsace GWTs I used to drink back in the '70's. Afore Z-H prostituted that genre by making intense GWTs w/ gobs of hedonistic fruit that are simply too tiring on the palate to drink a full btl
w/ a meal...plus cost well North of $20/btl. They have that minerality I used to find in Alsace GWTs that harvesting sur-maturite now seems to obliterate in Alsace.


<< back to TomHill archive

Home | Top of page | Recent Tastings

Copyright © 1996 - 2007, Tom Hill - All rights reserved
No original material may be reproduced without written consent
Mail & Comments
- Grape-Nutz