A remarkable natural Barolo

Now this is interesting. I encountered it at the Oslo tasting I’ve been at for the last couple of days.

It’s a naturally made Barolo from Giovanni Canonica. He makes very little – around 5000 bottles – which all sell out very quickly. Much of the production is sold in Japan.

Canonica farms 1.5 hectares in the [...]

A remarkable Freisa and a delicious Montepulciano

Two excellent wines at dinner last night, here in Oslo. The first, a Freisa from Langhe made like a Barolo; the second, a warmer wine, much richer and obvious, but still with good definition and edges.

Giuseppe Mascarello Langhe Freisa ‘Toetto’ 2004
This is Freisa made almost in the Barolo way (15 months in slavonian oak), and [...]

A wonderful Italian tasting

Alberto Graci, ex-banker, who is making seriously authentic wine in Mount Etna, Sicily

Yesterday’s tasting at One George Street, hosted by the wonderful Berry Bros & Rudd, is worth a mention. For the last few years

David Berry Green has been resident in Italy. In that time he has built up a superb portfolio of Italian [...]

V V Vermentino!

Vermentino is a white grape variety known for making very fresh, bright wines, even in warm climates. It’s Italian by origin, and does well in Sardinia, but has also crossed to France, and, in particular, Corsica and Provence. Expect to see it more often in the future: growers in the Languedoc like the way it [...]

Fontanafredda Barolo 2006

Fontanafredda Barolo 2006

Leaving aside all the arguments about traditional and modern styles in Barolo, and small versus more commercial producers, this is a delicious wine.

Fontanafredda Barolo 2006 Piedmonte, Italy
This spends two years in oak: the majority in large botti, but some of it in small barrels. Quite full in colour with some bricking of [...]

Dorilli, a new wine from Sicilian producer Planeta

This is an interesting new wine from Sicilian producer Planeta, who I visited a while back. It’s a posh version of their Cerasuolo di Vittoria, which is a deliciously fresh blend of Frappato and Nero d’Avola. For drinking now, I have to say that I prefer the regular version, but this may well develop nicely [...]

At the Berry Bros press tasting today

It’s always fun at the Berry Bros & Rudd press tastings, because they show such good wines. Today’s tasting, in the cellars below their shop in St James’ St, was no exception.

David Berry Green, pictured above, has revitalized their Italian range, and today he took the unusual step of showing 15 Langhe Nebbiolos, of which [...]

The natural wine fair

Spent a good portion of today at the natural wine fair in Borough Market. It was a fantastic location (though hot sunny weather or sheet rain would have played havoc), and the tasting itself was stunning. An embarrassment of riches. Here’s a short video of the event, which I hope gives you a brief flavour [...]

Lunch with Frank Cornelissen and his fabulous Etna wines

Yesterday’s lunch was special. It was a chance to catch up with Frank Cornelissen (above), a winegrower from Sicily’s Mount Etna, over lunch at Hibiscus.

Frank works as naturally as possible, without using any chemicals in the vineyard – not even the sulfur and copper used by biodynamic and organic growers – and he doesn’t add [...]

Nicodemi's Neromoro - a serious Montepulciano

This is a striking wine. It’s incredibly concentrated and intense, but also has a bit of class. It’s modern, but still has some soul. Currently, it still tastes very youthful, which suggests it may cellar quite well.

Nicodemi ‘Neromoro’ Montepulciano d’Abbruzzo Riserva 2006 Italy
14.5% alcohol. Deep coloured. Intense, dense, sweet dark cherry and plum fruit, with [...]