Mini Reviews: May 2015

Another month has almost come to an end and it’s time for Vino in Love’s end of the month Mini Reviews. May’s edition covers 14 wines. Most of these I tasted with friends and family; others I received as samples. A few of them may be more difficult to find than others. When available, I’ll post a Wine Searcher link to help you find the wine.

2000 Villa Spoiano Vin Santo del Chianti DOCG

Villa Spoiano Vin SantoMalvasia-Trebbiano blend; dried grapes; aged in oak for many years. Thick nose with stone fruit and marzipan aromas. In the mouth, good balance between acidity and sweetness. Notes of almonds. Complex and mineral. This ’00 Vin Santo is still full of energy and comes with an intense yet slightly bitter long-lasting finish. The ABV of 18.5% is well-integrated but still dangerously high.
Great ‘Vino da Meditazione (Italian for meditation wine). Of course, it naturally pairs well with Cantuccini.

Sells for about €25 in Munich 4 stars

2011 Feiler-Artinger – Solitaire – Burgenland Qualitätswein

87% Blaufränkisch, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3% Merlot; aged 15 months in barrique. Heavy nose with some blueberries and plums as well as touch of cocoa and caramel. On the palate, very dry with a good balance of fruit and oak notes, especially dark chocolate was present . Strong tannins and a rather heavy acidity. Complex and well- structured. Lingering aftertaste. Good wine but highly overpriced – at least here in Munich (€42).

3.5 starsAverage price on Wine Searcher: €28

2014 Zaccagnini – Yamada – Pecorino Colline Pescaresi IGT

2014 Zaccagnini Yolanda - Pecorino IGT100% Pecorino; aged in stainless steel vats. Citrus-dominated nose with a touch of apples. Very fresh and highly mineral with a present acidity. Notes of grapefruit and a little lemon juice in the mouth. Typical Pecorino. Decent, affordable summer wine.

Average price on Wine Searcher: €103 stars

Update June 9: I retasted this wine on a few more occasions and consequently lowered my original 3.5/5 stars rating to 3/5 stars.

2011 Tenuta Viglione – Johe – Puglia IGT

50% Aleatico, 50% Primitivo; aged 6 months in oak. Mix of grass and raspberries on the slightly alcoholic nose. In the mouth, Johe is warm and has a medium-body. Notes of cocoa and raspberries. Long finish.

Find this wine on Wine Searcher3.5 stars

2014 Feudi di San Gregorio – Greco di Tufo DOCG

2014 Feudi di San Gregorio Greco di Tufo DOCG100% Greco; aged in stainless steel tanks. Apple, lemons and a little bit of flowers on the nose. In the mouth very fresh, highly mineral and crisp. Present but balanced acidity. Juicy and very quaffable! Long but slightly alcoholic aftertaste.

3 starsAverage price on Wine Searcher: €11

2010 Di Filippo – Etnico – Montefalco Sagrantino DOCG

100% Sagrantino; aged for 12 months in barrels. Forest fruit like blackberries and raspberries on the nose but also marasca liquor, some black pepper and a hint of licorice. In the mouth, dry, warm and extremely tannic. Full-bodied. The wine has a strong, unpleasant alcoholic touch. Good length.

3 starsFind this wine on Wine Searcher

NV Sarnin-Berrux – La Syrah – Vin de France (Bourgone)

NV La SyrahSyrah; aging process unknown (found no technical sheet). Berry-driven nose with raspberries, blueberries but also marasca cherries and hints of plums. In the mouth, the wine was slightly fizzy. Dry and medium-bodied with present tannins. This Syrah is a fruit-bomb. Medium acidity. Good length.f

3 starsFind this wine on Wine Searcher

2007 Fattoria Lavacchio – Cedro – Chianti Rufina Riserva DOCG

90% Sangiovese, 10% Merlot; aged for 24 months in large oak casks, followed by 18 months in barrique. Wonderfully intense nose with violet, bilberry, black cherries, licorice tobacco and espresso. In the mouth, full-bodied and well-structured with a good complexity. Elegant and harmonious with present tannins. Powerful Chianti Rufina with a touch of red cherries. Long-lasting finish.

4 starsAverage price on Wine Searcher: €24

2010 Tenuta San Guido – Guidalberto – Toscana IGT

2010 Tenuta San Guido - Guidalberto - Toscana IGT60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% Merlot; aged for 15 months in French oak. 375ml bottle. Nose opens with violet and black cherries, followed by blackcurrant, tobacco and licorice. In the mouth, dry and full-bodied. Pleasing, mellow tannins. Fine wine which is full of energy from the heart of Bolgheri. Persistent aftertaste.

4 starsAverage price on Wine Searcher: €37

2013 San Ferdinando – Ciliegiolo – Toscana IGT

100% Ciliegiolo; aged in stainless steel tanks. Fruit-driven varietal Ciliegiolo with mostly red cherries and plums. In the mouth dry with lots of fruit and a refreshing acidity. Medium-bodied and very quaffable. Easy-drinking wine with soft tannins. This wine is also good when served slightly chilled. It is rather simple but remains charming. Nice summer red.

3 starsAverage price on Wine Searcher: €10

2012 San Ferdinando – Pugnitello – Toscana IGT

100% Pugnitello; aged in oak barrels. Thick nose with plums, blac
kcurrant and some spices. Full-bodied with some green tannins. Might get better with age.

3.5 starsAverage price on Wine Searcher: €11 (€25+ in Munich)

2013 Leone de Castris – Locorotondo DOC

2013 Leone de Castris - Locorotondo65% Verdeca, 35% Bianco d’Alessano; aged in stainless steel tanks. Very fruity white wine from Souther Italy with passion fruit and mango aromas. Low acidity in the mouth and fruit-driven. Light, easy-to-drink wine which is best-served as an aperitif.

3 starsAverage price on Wine Searcher: €10

2014 Colle Stefano – Verdicchio di Matelica DOC

100% Verdicchio; aged in stainless steel tanks. The nose is a mix of flowers, fruit and pine. In the mouth dry and very mineral. Crisp with a good sapidity.  Great wine for summer. Lingering aftertaste.
The 2013 vintage of this Verdicchio is one of my favorite white wines but 2014 is not as good. 2014 was in many parts of Italy a difficult vintage. Don’t get me wrong, this is still a very good Verdicchio, in fact better than most 2014 Verdicchio that I tasted so far, and worth buying if you enjoy this style of wine.

4 starsAverage price on Wine Searcher: €14

2013 CampoChiarenti – Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG

CampoChiarentini Vernaccia di San Gimignano100% Vernaccia; aged in steel tanks. Peach, apricot and also a hint of quince and apple on the nose. On the palate, dry and mineral with notes of grass and fruit. Medium-bodied with good structure and a balanced acidity. Good length

This is a great Vernaccia with lots of personality. I discovered it at a trade fair earlier this month at which the Consorzio di San Gimignano participated. Out of all the Vernaccia this one impressed me the most because it stood out the most.

4 stars

I’m not sure about the price tag. The wine is also not listed on Wine Searcher. Fellow wine blogger John Fodera of TuscanVines wrote a great post about the winery. If you want to learn more about CampoChiarenti then head over to his blog.

Parting Words

This concludes my Mini Reviews for May 2015. If I had to pick one wines that I had to recommend to you out of these 14 then I’d go with Villa Spoiano Vin Santo del Chianti – simply for the reason that I believe that sweet wines are under appreciated, at least here in Germany But from a Twitter conversation I got the impression that this is not just a problem unique to Germany. I recently wrote a post on sweet wines which you can find here.

The wine which impressed me the least out of these is the Di Filippo Etnico Montefalco Sagrantino. It’s not a bad wine but maybe my expectations were too high. Sagrantino is a difficult grape and I definitely had better Montefalco Sagrantino before. Etnico shares the last place with Feiler-Artinger’s Solitaire. For a wine which retails for over €40 I simply expect more than that. But then I have to admit that Austrian reds rarely impress me and if this hadn’t been a sample then I probably had never tried it. Setting the price tag aside, Solitaire is a good wine.

Some of the reviewed wines in this post were samples. As always, all views are my own. Follow this link for more information about Vino in Love’s sample policy.

Not familiar with wines are rated on Vino in Love? Take a look at this page.

That’s all for today. Cheers!

2 comments on “Mini Reviews: May 2015”

  1. Suzanne Reply

    I love your mini reviews Julian. Sweet wines are under appreciated here in the US as well as Germany in my opinion. The problem is the balance, cloying sweet wine is reminiscent of cough syrup to me but a nice balance with a little sweetness is delicious.

    • Julian Rossello Reply

      Thank you Suzanne! I’m so glad to hear that you enjoy reading them.
      Sweet wines seem to be a difficult topic. The market was flooded with poor-quality syrupy sweet wines many, many years ago and their reputation has not yet fully been restored.

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