Posts Filed Under on the road
I recently visited an area of Tuscany that is, ironically, probably better known for old school Vespa production than for wine, despite being in a prime tourist location between some of the region’s most popular northern cities: Terre di Pisa. It’s an area with a tight-knit, talented group of producers, and some of the more fascinating vineyard soils that you’ll ever see (and believe me, I’ve seen a lot of them).
I wrote about the experience for Palate Press, which you can check out via the link below:
Forward to the Past: the wines of Terre di Pisa
TdP views from Beconcini
I’m not going to give away the wine geekiness goodies from the article here (c’mon, you’re not really that lazy, are you?) but I thought that I’d at least list and link the wines highlighted in the piece:
Check out the article for the details, and, of course, the wines themselves (for a taste of what Tuscany is like from an area not dominated by the dueling monocultures of grapes and olives…).
Last week, Palate Press published my take on the current state of the Paso Robles wine scene (based on a recent media tour of the region), titled Paso Robles: Sorry, not sorry.
That title seemed more publication-appropriate than “Bitch, please!” or “I heard what you said, I just don’t give a f*ck.”
You see, a funny thing happened on the way to producing the fine wines with lower alcohol levels that are supposed to represent the changing tastes and preferences of the American consumer: Paso Robles largely stopped giving a sh*t.
image: Palate Press
By largely ignoring said trend and focusing on what the region naturally provides, Paso Robles’ finest are arguably making some of their best wines yet, to the benefit of those who favor big, bold, but ultimately well-balanced vino.
Check out the full story for the details; below are the wines highlighted in the piece (in case you’re the impatient type):
I realize that, by running with yet another Tuscan wine review write-up (and those fresh on the heels of a Soave write-up), I am also running with the risk of 1WD appearing as though it’s an Italian-wine-only website.
But hey, it’s my website, if you don’t like it, go make your own damn wine blog, okay? Actually, if you love wine, you should be doing that anyway, but that’s another topic entirely.
Let’s get back to Tuscany, and my recent visit to Tenuta di Arceno in the too-charming-for-words area of San Gusmé. Arcanum isn’t the only thing that they do at Arceno, and, thankfully, not the only thing that they do well, either. So, to provide a little taste of what they’ve got going on at Arceno, I thought it would be interesting take a glide over their other brands, and clue you into some of my favorites from the retrospective tastings of each, which conveniently from a narrative perspective just happened to fall across three consecutive vintages (no, really, I’m not making that up!)…
Read the rest of this stuff »
It takes some serious chutzpah to pour your super-Tuscan red, sans hesitation, alongside Le Macchiole Paleo, Ornellaia, and Sassicai.
Now, you might expect that kind of faccia tosta from the Italians, but in this case it came from Frenchman veteran vigneron Pierre Seillan who, alonf with winemaker Lawrence Cronin and vineyard manager Michele Pezzicoli, produces the Cabernet Franc-dominated Arcanum at Tuscany’s Tenuta di Arceno (I visited as part of a media jaunt earlier this Summer).
Tenuta di Arceno is part of the Jackson Family megapolis of wine brands, for which former Loire and Bordeaux winemaker Seillan also oversees Château Lassègue in Saint-Émilion and Anakota in California. The gorgeous, Etruscan-history-tinged estate, nestled in the San Gusmé area, was purchased in the early 1980s, and now has about 230 acres (among 2500 total) dedicated to the vine.
Seillan’s faccia tosta isn’t just for show; the guy is happy to make bold pronouncements about his wines, because at this point he has notched enough winegrowing experience that the of-course-that’s-how-it-would-be timbre of his words are bolstered by an unspoken sense of and-I-know-this-because-I’ve-lived-it-twenty-times-already. “The future of this region,” he noted, “is to show the potential of the wines in ten, fifteen, twenty years.”
To wit: Arcanum was birthed in 2002, a difficult vintage for Tuscany. “Cabernet Franc showed its elegance,” Seillan said of the vintage; “we had a revelation in Cabernet Franc!” Based on the result, Sellian and his team decided to replant and re-graft even more Cabernet Franc on the estate, some utilizing 20+ year old rootstock. Sellian told me that he now wants to bring Château Ausone‘s team here, to “scare them a little bit…”
Read the rest of this stuff »