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!)…
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- 11 Cecchi Coevo (Toscana): A delicious, delicate, and doggedly determined take on the Super Tuscan vibe, which needs juice like this $100 A- >>find this wine<<
- 13 Troon Estate Tannat (Applegate Valley): It's only a short trip from Oregon to Uruguay, if traveling via this smoky, tangy ride. $28 B+ >>find this wine<<
- 12 Susana Balbo Signature Cabernet Sauvignon (Mendoza): Lip-smacking tanginess & dark richness, all in search of dry-rubbed ribs. $25 B+ >>find this wine<<
- 14 Gustave Lorentz Gewurztraminer Reserve (Alsace): Ginger spiced seriousness underscoring the exotic tropical fruit sweet talk. $28 B+ >>find this wine<<
- 13 Gustave Lorentz Pinot Gris Reserve (Alsace): Go ahead, through basically anything except grilled steak at it, it won't even blink. $25 B+ >>find this wine<<
- 14 Quinta de la Rosa Dourosa White (Douro): Citrus, nuts, and rocks; and it also rocks in the superlative quality-price-ratio sense. $16 B+ >>find this wine<<
- NV Quinta de la Rosa Tonel 12 10 Year Tawny Port (Porto): For being Tawny, this one wants to get uncharacteristically fresh with you $38 A- >>find this wine<<
- 11 Quinta de la Rosa Late Bottled Vintage Port (Porto): Big, dense, and spicy. But very delicious things can come in big packages. $30 B+ >>find this wine<<
- NV Quinta de la Rosa Tawny Port (Porto): Expect the unexpected; in this case, drier style, fruitier expression, & nutty complexity. $20 B+ >>find this wine<<
- 13 Quinta de la Rosa Estate Red (Douro): What do you call something this brambly, wild, lively, & poised for this price? "A Triumph." $20 A- >>find this wine<<
There’s a new beverage event in town, pardners!
I’m happy to report that registration is now open for the 2017 US BevX Wine & Beverage Expo, to be held in Washington, D.C. February 22-24.
It’s targeted at beverage industry insiders, and here’s the skinny from the event organizers:
This year’s theme is “The Quality Revolution” and the conference will examine closely new “quality driven” trends in the marketplace and the expected impact on the overall wine and beverage category. Interactive discussions, led by industry experts will highlight innovations in production, packaging, sales & marketing and the effect on quality and consumer impression. Attendees will also have the opportunity to learn more about anticipated changes in lending, legislation, legal and compliance and ensure they are prepared for success in 2017.
I’ve been involved in the discussions about this event with its creators for some time now, so I am personally really pleased that it’s coming together, and I can tell you that these folks are not messing around; they want this event to be great.
I’ll be both a panelist (part of The New Press Machine: Bloggers and their Increasing Influence in the Industry) and a speaker (moderating the winemaker/owner panel Leading the Commitment: Owners Investing in Quality), and I’m also slated to be part of some of the General Sessions. The full 2017 speaker list is (present company excluded) quite impressive, and I’m thrilled to be a part of it.
So… wine industry peeps: get on over to the website and get registered!
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…”
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