Castello Di Fonterutoli Toscana Mazzei Mix 36 is made from 100 percent 100% Sangiovese.
Castello di Fonterutoli, source of some of Italy’s most prestigious wines, is an historic property embracing an entire tranquil, centuries-old hamlet just south of Castellina in Chianti, in the heart of Chianti Classico. The estate has been in the hands of the Mazzei family for 26 generations. The Mazzei’s have been producing wine at Castello di Fonterutoli since 1435. This dynamic family has carefully safeguarded the inherent beauty and rich heritage of Fonterutoli, while simultaneously implementing measures to ensure cutting-edge quality in the vineyards and cellars.
At Fonterutoli, there are 36 Sangiovese biotypes grown, including 18 massal selections exclusive to the estate. To preserve the unique qualities of each type, the Mazzei family micro-vinifies each separately, then blends them into their Mix 36 cuvée, an arduous, technically challenging process that produces breathtaking results.
TERROIR & VINTAGE NOTES
The Mazzei’s believe the name “Fonterutoli” derives from Latin origin, ‘Fons Rutolae’ or ‘Fons Rutilant,’ meaning clear spring. The area was chosen by the Etruscans to build villages near the water springs. An incredibly diverse area, Fonterutoli covers five main vineyard sites of different terroirs: Fonterutoli, Siepi, Le Ripe, Caggio and Belvedere.
Sangiovese finds itself particularly at home in these areas, which are planted at altitudes varying between 750 and 1,800 feet above sea level, at south and southwest exposure. The rocky limestone and sandstone soil structure, high density planting ( avg. 7,000 plants per hectare) and low yields of less than 40 hectoliters per hectare result in the production of complex, elegant and powerful wines.
A mix of 36 distinct Sangiovese biotypes. Grapes were hand harvested beginning of October, then fermented in temperature-controlled tanks at 79-82˚F. The wine underwent 15 days of maceration.
Aged for 18 months in French Oak barrels (500lt), then placed in concrete tanks for a final 4 months. The wine is bottle aged for 11 months before release.
The wine takes on a deep ruby color. On the nose, complex aromas of fresh red berries. On the palate, extremely elegant with red fruit notes and a persistent finish.
A red that is extremely polished and refined with blackberry and cherry character. Hints of cedar and dried flowers. Medium body. Juicy fruit. Hard not to drink this now but better in 2019. - James Suckling 94 Points
Full red color, tending to ruby red. Complex aromatic nuances, that range from black cherry to blueberries, chocolate. A sumptuous expression of ripe fruit, that runs through the mouth with invasive persistence, typical for a great Amarone. The finale closes with sinuous tobacco and new leather notes.
Red and dark-brown lands with a certain calcareous and clay concentration. Typical of Valpolicella area is the presence of stones in the soil. The climate is favored by Lessini hills that protect the vineyards from cold fronts coming from the north and by Garda Lake from the west, ideal for mitigating the temperature especially during winter months.
Perfect with red meat and game dishes, mature cheeses, truffles.
Avennia Valery Red Blend is made from 86% Merlot and 14% Cabernet Franc
Valery is named for the patron saint of wine in the St. Emilion region that inspired it.
We started with old vine Merlot from a stony block in the heart of the Yakima Valley and added complex, aromatic Cabernet Franc from the Horse Heaven Hills. The result is a balanced, complex wine with the elegance and ethereal perfume that this blend of two of Washington’s best varietals are known for.
The nose on this wine is very perfumed, almost exotic with notes of fresh violets, red plum, winter mint, fresh herbs and crushed limestone qualities. The palate is poised and balanced, with red fruits and mocha powder encapsulated in limestone. The finish lingers delicately, with the Cabernet Franc asserting a light tobacco and herb note, giving depth. A compelling wine that will continue to unwind for 7-10 years in the cellar.
"Brought up in 30% new French oak, the 2016 Valery (70/30 Merlot and Cabernet Franc) offers more black cherry and earthy, herbal notes as well as a medium-bodied, seamless, beautifully balanced style. It too shows a vibrant, fresh, yet concentrated style that has a Bordeaux feel in its weight and texture."
- Jeb Dunnuck (April 2019), 93 pts
"Good medium-dark red. Aromas of blueberry, mocha, licorice and violet are a bit darker than those of the 2015 version. Dense and penetrating, with wild flavors of dark berries, licorice and game given lift by rocky minerality and a minty nuance. Chris Peterson slightly acidified his Cabernet Franc from Champoux Vineyard, which he added to the wine for richness. This beauty may yet tighten up in the bottle.- Stephen Tanzer"
- Antonio Galloni's Vinous (November 2018), 92+ pts
Pinino Brunello di Montalcino is made from 100 percent Sangiovese.
Full, round and silky, with lots of aromas of blackberry and plum. Full bodied elegance with fine tannins and spicy oak notes on the finish.
Avereage age of the vines is 20 years.
Aged 30 months in Solvanian Oak barrels
Wine went through malolactic fermetation. It was slightly filtered before bottling.
Pairs well with pasta with meat sauce, red meats and game.
- Wine & Spirits Magazine (April 2020), 91 pts & Best buy
Sainte Victoire Cotes de Provence Rose is made with 50% Grenache, 30% Syrah, 20% Cinsault
Bright, crisp, fruity rosé from Provence.
Sainte Victoire became its own AOC within the AOC Cotes de Provence in 2005. It is more demanding in term of yields, vinification and quality than the general AOC Cotes de Provence. Green harvest and in the cellar, using a sorting table in order to keep only the best grapes for the macerations.
A natural match to enjoy with salad, chicken, grilled salmon, just simply with an hamburger or on his own, colder, during a warmer summer day.
Abeja Chardonnay Washington State 2013 is 100 percent Chardonnay
This Chardonnay has the essence of a freshly baked lemon meringue pie, green apple, and Bartlett pear. It is both dense and bright, with a hint of vanilla and cinnamon coming from its time in barrel. Aromas are so much related to experiences. It is a wine that is in the traditional Abeja style, with superb polish, complexity, and balance, yet with a light touch at 13.5 percent alcohol.
"Supple, ripe and complex, with layers of pear, floral, tangerine and a note reminiscent of freshly ironed clothing. Fine acidity carries this through to a refreshing finish. Drink now through 2020. 919 cases made. –HS"
- Wine Spectator (November 15th, 2015), 91 pts
"Abeja’s 2013 Chardonnay offers clean, crisp notes of apple blossom, white flowers, citrus and brioche. Fermented and aged in barrel (40% new), it has a solid mix of richness and freshness, is beautifully balanced, and will drink nicely for 2-3 years. - Jeb Dunnuck"
- The Wine Advocate (erobertparker.com, June 2015), 91 pts
"A blend of top sites Celilo and Conner Lee, this appealing wine displays aromas of candy corn, corn silk and chamomile. The stone-fruit flavors are elegantly styled, showing a sense of restraint and balance that carries through the lingering finish."
- Wine Enthusiast (September 1st 2015), 91 pts
Giarola Bianco di Custoza Saint Valery 2013 is made from 40% Garganega, 25% Cortese, 20% Trebbiano toscano, 15% blend of Trebbianello & Chardonnay
Selection of the finest musts of each type. Selective, partial carbonic maceration with temperature control.
Brilliant pale straw-yellow color with greenish reflections. Fruity, floral bouquet. Dry, crisp and clean with a soft, fruity finish. Harmonious and refreshing. Pairs best with seafood, grilled and roasted white meats and chef salads.
Alcohol content: 12% vol
Net dry extract: 18,5 g/l
Reducer sugars: 5 g/l
Total acidity: 5,3 g/l
Total sulphites: 60-70 mg/l
The Giarola Estate
Giarola is located in Palazzolo di Sona, in the province of Verona, near the Garda Lake, in those regions which are geographically ideally suited for the production of Bardolino and Custoza wine.
These morainic terrains have a particular historic importance and they originate in the Quaternary glacial period when ice retired itself, leaving behind finely triturated rocks and rubble, transforming them in fine clay, ideal for vintage wines.
The mild and temperate climate and the strategic position in the inland around Garda lake, where lace-like sunshine and gentle breezes create the right climate for a luxuriant vegetation, are the elements which brought about the d.o.c. and d.o.c.g. denominations for all production areas of the company.
Since 1923 the land of Giarola family has been cultivated with vines and in 1968 Umberto Giarola began with the vinification of grapes. In last years, we have many developments and decidedly radical changes.
They are all founded in the philosophy which inspires the company and we can sum up in the following concept: "Respect for the Environment and Love for Nature".
Firmly adhering to this principles, the company has always been able to be in the vanguard and move with the times. Important examples are the total renewal of the vineyards and the implementation of the double curtain breeding system with a density of 6.000 plants per hectare; the controlled ground-irrigation system in case of drought in order to avoid stress to the vines maintaining the quality of the fruit. The company has invested heavily in land, machinery and staff not only in order to grow in numbers, but also to refine the techniques for grape-growing and winemaking.
Main “people” of the company are Umberto, the father and his sons Michele and Valeriano. Umberto supervises the various production processes and coordinates, in particular he works in the vineyards and the winemaking process itself.
The job of Valeriano, with his father, concerned in oenological processes and the fields. As far as Valeriano concerned, he also works for the packaging sector. During the first phase particular importance is given to the repeated soil- and leaf-analysis in order to ascertain the presence of all nutritional elements necessary for the balanced development of the plant.
Very important is the cold maceration for Custoza Elite and Garganega Monte Cristo tardy vintage. Michele has an important role: the commercial development of the company. In fact he goes in the best restaurants and wine shops throughout Italy also crossing the borders of Germany, Switzerland and Canada, to attract attention of our products. This gives rise to hope and sustains an ambitious project: to raise the image of Giarola wines to the highest level worldwide, maintaining direct contact with the company, in order to guarantee personally the quality of the product. The union of tradition and innovation offers consumers an ample choice of wines, able to satisfy the palate of those in search of high quality.
The Giarola Vineyard
The estate spreads over 12 hectares (30 acres) of vineyard planted to sandy, gravelly soil ideal for grape growing.
Philippe Milan Pommard AOC is 100% Pinot Noir
This wine has been aged in Oak (25% new Oak)
This is a little more structured and the style goes more toward the "vin de garde", or wines meant to age. This wine needs some food, or sometime in the decanter right now. It is well structured and reminds me of a Volnay. As a matter of fact, the parcel is located right next to Volnay. The finish is long and still quite juicy with chewy tannins lingering.
My Favorite Neighbor Cabernet Sauvignon is made from 77% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Petite Sirah, 8% Petit Verdot, 2% Malbec, 2% Cabernet Franc and 2% Syrah .
What started as an homage to Stephan Asseo of L'Aventure Winery and his Bordeaux roots quickly became an obsession. Stretching wide across the Westside Hills of Paso Robles is clay soil amazingly similar to those found in Napa and Bordeaux. Today, these special sites are farmed meticulously by the farmers who have become My Favorite Neighbors. With their dedication to the land, we are able to craft a world class wine without any shortcuts or compromises. Welcome to the Neighborhood.
The 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon is similarly deep purple/ruby-hued and has slightly more red fruits with lots of black raspberry, cassis, toasted spice, unsmoked tobacco, and incense aromas and flavors. It almost has a Margaux-like perfume and is medium to full-bodied, seamless, and wonderfully balanced on the palate. Some chalky minerality comes through with time in the glass, and it has plenty of tannins and a great finish. It’s not an over-the-top blockbuster and impresses just as much for its elegance as its richness. -Jeb Dunnuck 96 Points