I was curious to know more about the peculiarities of Italian vines.
Unexpectedly, it was Italian wine Wednesday evening at Vintage Wine Cellar: a nice cellar for imported wines in the heart of Beirut, Saifi Village. In fact, after Tuscany wine evening, held the previous week, Wadih Riachi, a Lebanese wine expert and head sommelier at Vintage, was sharing an exquisite wine tasting evening about Piemonte and the variety of grapes sowed there: Nebbiolo, Cortese, Barolo, Barbaresco, Dolcetto and others less known varieties exclusive to the region on the 1st of October.
No need to tell you I grabbed the opportunity to learn more from a wine expert in Beirut, such as Wadih Riachi. So I confirmed my attendance, and was there at 7h30pm sharp.
Actually, my first “contact” with fine Italian wine was a pure, happy coincidence at Vintage Wine Cellar. At this time I was working there. Wadih invited me to taste a deep ruby red glass of wine, fading to a dark pink rim.
“Swirl and sniff” he said…
Suddenly, I was under the spell of the expressive nose with cherry notes, forest fruits, aromatic herbs, and juniper aromas it was delivering.
“Sip and study” he continued…
On the palate, this Brunello di Montalcino expressed unique ripe tannins, integrated acidity, and a rich structure with a lingering finish.
The process captivated me: swirl, sniff, sip, study and enjoy.
Since then, I was waiting for the opportunity to taste another fine Italian wine, equally satisfying!
And tonight was the night…
After an exciting introduction to Piemonte region and vineyards, we started the 1st of October’s evening with a glass of Gaja’s Sito Moresco 2010, Langhe: a fruity, elegant wine, well balanced in the mouth offering a fresh finish with very fine and silky tannins.
We were then invited to share a classic Nebbiolo-based Barbaresco DOCG wine, particularly oxidised but still drinkable and pleasant to taste: a Barbaresco, Marchesi Di Barolo 2008. Its aged and “wise” aromas amazed us. Wadih picked this wine specially to show us that a well-conserved bottle of wine never ages… however it was just the time to uncork it.
Can we mention a Nebbiolo-based wine without referring to the powerful, intense, most famous and prestigious Barolo DOCG wine?
The answer is definitely NO!
And here comes the remarkable Gaja’s Dagromis 2009.
Wadih Riachi poured us an intense red, rich glass of wine, with berries and floral notes distinguished by there aromas of liquorice, dried herbs and spices, to end our evening with an unforgettable lingering finish.
And the best is yet to come…
After the theoretical and practical part of the evening, we were treated to the Vines of San Lorenzo through a book about the making of a great Italian wine, the story of one man’s pursuit of perfection, a thoroughly comprehensive and engrossing account of the art of Angelo Gaja’s winemaking.
No better way to end the evening…
Keep up with Winedipity and discover what is coming up for next week!
Spain in your glass…