By Kori ~ February 13th, 2008.
This month’s Wine Blogging Wednesday is more of a writing challenge than a tasting challenge. Andrew of Spittoon, our February host, asked us to drink any Italian red. That’s easy enough, we thought. But here’s where the tricky part comes in…after drinking that Italian red, he challenged us to review the wine in Just Seven Words.
First things first, the Wine Peeps selected the 2001 Vietti Barolo Castiglione as our subject. Last fall when we were in Orange County, we visited the Wine Exchange and they were touting this wine as great quality for a reasonable price (at that time, it cost $29.99). We really enjoyed it when we tried it there, so we bought another bottle when we got home and had been looking forward to trying it again, this time with a nice meal.
John and I became particularly intrigued with the Piedmont region of Italy, especially with learning more about the Nebbiolo grape, as we were studying for the Certified Specialist of Wine exam last year. Nebbiolo is one of the four most tannic wines in the world; the other three being Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, and Tannat. Barolo, produced with 100 percent Nebbiolo grapes, requires a minimum aging period of three years, two of them in barrels. Our interest in Piedmont and Nebbiolo has been piqued even further as we have been reading Vino Italiano for the Wine Book Club. Here’s an excerpt from this wonderful book:
“Nebbiolo is often described as one of Italy’s noble varieties. It is known first and foremost for being fiercely tannic, and yet those gripping tannins are extracted from very thin skins that don’t hold a lot of coloring pigments. …the mark of a good Barolo is not its weight on the palate but the penetrating, perfumy aromas of the nebbiolo grape. … They are wines with a balance of sweet, savory, and spicy elements that tingle on the palate, their aromas like vapors that waft up into your brain and lodge themselves in your memory forever.”
The Vietti winery is one of the most well-known wineries in Piedmont. It is located in the tiny village of Castiglione Falletto in the heart of the famous Piedmontese wine region known locally as “The Langhe.”
Over the weekend, the Wine Peeps got together and had this wine with a fabulous dinner prepared by LaGayle. We enjoyed this wine even more with a meal than we had enjoyed it the first time. Barolos are known for their aging potential so to find a 2001 Barolo that is so approachable now is quite remarkable.
Now for the wine writing challenge, here’s my seven word review:
Excellent! A bright, fruity, robust, balanced steal.
2001 Vietti Barolo Castiglione
Quality: 4 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 5 bangs for your buck (out of 5)
Where to buy: WebWine.com (California), $37.25
Filed under: Five-Bangs For Your Buck Wines, Italian Wine, Nebbiolo, Red Wine, Wine Blogging Wednesday, Wine Book Club, Wines Over $25