VINO 2016: Highlighting an Award Winning Wine of Cantina Sampietrana
Italy, like no other place on earth for its food, is also like no other place on earth for its wines. In the US we are just beginning to understand how the wine making history, terroirs and microclimates of the various wine regions of Italy, have contributed to an abundance of so many wonderful wines. It is almost impossible to wrap one’s head around all the amazing wine possibilities that Italians have lived with all of their lives and for centuries.
Indeed, the entire country of Italy from one corner to the other is layered in the ancient history of winemaking and the appreciation of the beauties of living and enjoying good food paired with wonderful wine. To give you an idea of how much Italians know and understand the ancient wine making business, there are 500 grape varietals in Italy that can be made into a multitude of wines as varied as Proseccos, to dessert wines, to rich full bodied reds and creamy, soothing, light whites. In France, there are only 15 grape varietals that compose French wines. So for every Italian wine tasting I go to like VINO 2016’s tasting that featured over 125 wine exhibitors in the Hilton Midtown grand ballroom on February 8th-9th, I enjoy sampling wines from Italy’s different regions. Slowly, but surely I am learning about the multitude of grapes, their terroirs and microclimates which have produced some of the most incredible Italians wines that pair wonderfully with lip-smacking, delicious, quality Italian food.
VINO 2016 is preparing me for visiting Italy again to visit relatives and to visit some of my most favored wineries whose wines I’ve tasted recently. Some are featured on this blog; others are featured in my Blogcritics posts: the exemplary Slow Wines like Cantina Della Volta and Badia A Coltibuono and Slow Wines from the Piedmont like those from The Fiorenzo Nada winery, Carussin winery and the Cà ed Balos winery, and the storied, amazing Tuscan wines of Pietro Beconcini, These represented regions in the North. I also sampled wines from Abruzzo (see the post on this blog of the story of Montepulciano d’Abruzzo and winery Valpeligna Vini) and Puglia in my first post about the Negroamaro and Primitivo wines from Cantina Sampietrana produced from their wonderful organic Alberello bush vines.
After attending workshops on wines from other regions at VINO 2016, I went to the grand tasting in the ballroom and spent some time learning about Puglian wines from Stefano Civino who represents Cantina Sampietrana. One wine I didn’t discuss in my previous post about Cantina Sampietrana is their amazing 52 Brindisi D.O.P. Riserva 2012 (see photo). It is an award winner, a beautiful red statuesque wine, with moderate fruit and earthy palate, barely noticeable tannins and sumptuous, lasting finish. Paired with spicy meats and full flavored cheeses and salumi it is a knockout. I figured it would be best to let Stefano Civino discuss for himself Cantina Sampietrana and an exemplary vintage of this marvelous blend of Montepulciano (20%) and Negroamaro (80%) via Wine TV with host Jessica Alteri.