Italy, wine

VINO 2011: The Grand Tasting

VINO 2011 Grand Tasting

It’s here: the big finish to the three-day Italian wine extravaganza that is VINO 2011. A tasting of wines so deep, so enormous, and so loaded with every type of wine imaginable (reds, whites, rosés, sparklers, dessert) that I desperately needed this map:

VINO 2011 Grand Tasting Map

Once again, navigating your way through an event like this requires strategic planning. My first order of business was to hustle to the Allegrini table to see my friend Robin.

Robin Shay of Allegrini

Not only is he a dapper and charming fellow, he happens to represent two of my favorite Italian wines. Pictured is the Amarone, which for a wine of such concentration, richness, and strength somehow finishes with an elegance belying its brawny profile. And I wouldn’t dare step away from the table without trying what I consider to be an iconic wine of the Veneto: La Poja. It’s a single-vineyard, 100% Corvina that you need to get into your glass ASAP. (I’d be remiss if I also didn’t mention that Robin knows where the best pizza in New York is: Kesté. Check out this review with great photos from one of my absolute favorite food blogs, John and Elana Talk About Food. But I digress….)

So where did I go from here? I decided that I just was going to try totally unfamiliar wines. Like this late-harvest Primitivo from Cignomoro. It was a sweet, but not cloying, red wine that I would love with some fromage blanc cheesecake or blue cheese. (I dig the labels, too.)

Primitivo Dolce

Or how about a Passerina from the Marche? Made by Domodimonti, it’s a crisp and dry white. And I really liked their Pecorino (not the cheese, the grape) which had a nice richness from oak aging and would be great with heartier seafood dishes.

The Wines of Domodimonti

Needing a break from wine, I wandered over to the area of the tasting I call “Aperitif Alley.” (Or possibly more accurate, the “Digestive Detour.”) Loveliest was a beautiful anise liqueur from Varnelli, pictured on the left. I adore the flavor of black licorice, especially in clear alcoholic form.

Digestives

This post was composed in the VINO 2011 Press Room, and greatly aided by the genius-in-a-pouch combo of espresso, sugar, and Varnelli over ice.

Genius in a Pouch

Full disclosure: The Italian Trade Commission has provided my transportation and accommodations.

Standard

3 thoughts on “VINO 2011: The Grand Tasting

  1. Wonderful write up – easy to understand and relate to for wine newbies like myself. I’m particularly interested in the “Digestif Detour” and will be on the lookout of that Varnelli.

  2. Pingback: 2008 Bordeaux: We Do The Hard Work | Esquin's Blog

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s