Gabriele Righetti, Vigneti di Ettore, Negrar di Valpolicella produced a charming Valpolicella Classico
© Tom Hyland
One of my preferred articles I write every year is the one in which I note the best worths in Italian white wine for that calendar year. There are worths in wines from every country – you simply have to know where to look – but to me it appears that are more from Italy than anywhere else.
Much of this involves the truth that the Italian red wine industry is based on native varietals – there are more than 200 of them presently in use. This guarantees a large selection of wines that you just will not discover anywhere, be they white, red, rosé or gleaming. It follows that not-so-famous wines won’t require the rates of the best-known offerings from around the globe; for Italy, that would include such iconic white wines such as Barolo, Brunello di Montalcino and Amarone.
I ought to keep in mind that worths are available at various cost ranges; not all worth wines are priced under $20 or $25, as an effective red at $50 or $60 can be a relative worth.
Without additional ado, here is a list of the most satisfying – and most fairly priced Italian red wines I tasted in 2022. Rates noted are suggested retail in the US, but according to shipping expenses and regional taxes and other alcohol laws, rates might differ extensively in your place.
Podere Sette Vermentino “L’Irancondo” 2021 – From Bolgheri on the Tuscan coast, this Vermentino uses typical dynamic acidity along with tastes of spearmint and melon. Medium-bodied with exceptional harmony, this is very enticing- enjoy this with shellfish and other seafood over the next 4-6 years. A noteworthy value at just $15.
Surrau Vermentino di Gallura “Branu” 2021 – This exceptional estate in Sardinia is understood for its numerous versions of Vermentino di Gallura, with the “Sciala” bottling thought about among the finest of the appellation. Their “Branu” offering is lighter on the taste buds, but no less satisfying. Lovely fragrances of pineapple and saffron, this has a distinct saltiness in the finish, and needs to be coupled with strongly flavored seafood. $15
Colli di Lapio Fiano di Avellino 2021 – This is a top-notch Fiano estate in Irpinia, and the 2021 is an impressive effort. Quite abundant, with gorgeous lemon and apple aromas and tastes, this has gorgeous varietal character and consistency. Best with seafood, although this is rich enough to couple with lighter breast meats. A traditional that will age well for anywhere from 10-12 years. $25
Fonzone Greco di Tufo 2021 – A sophisticated, wonderfully rendered Greco di Tufo with tasty melon and citrus flavors that will consume well with lighter breast meats and many seafood; take pleasure in over the next four to five years. This is an understated Greco di Tufo that has such fantastic purity. $20
Ca’ Rugate Soave Classico “San Michele” 2021 – Among the most amazing trends in Italian white wine is how good Soave has ended up being nowadays. Ca’Rugate has actually been at the top of their game for the last decade, and this 2021 is extremely aromatic and tasty! There is outstanding intricacy, great acidity and a lengthy, satisfying finish. $18
Andrea Felici Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi Classico 2021 – This winery’s Verdicchio riserva Il Cantico della Figura has actually been deservedly rated as one of the finest examples of Verdicchio over the previous half-dozen years; this classic Verdicchio from Felici is simply as scrumptious. Offering scents of melon, pear and magnolias, this is as pure a Verdicchio as you will find; there is also impressive intricacy, harmony and skill. $18
Ciavolich Pecorino “Aries” 2021 – Pecorino from Abruzzo has actually ended up being an in-demand choice on the finest wine lists in America and Europe; Ciavolich is an expert with this varietal. Medium-bodied with unique apricot and pineapple aromas, this displays tropical fruit notes in addition to a creaminess on the palate. Splendidly complex, this would be ideal with Asian food. $20
Bellenda Prosecco Superiore Brut “San Fermo” 2021 – This was one of the most rewarding, reliable and complicated examples of Prosecco I tasted this year. Showing scents of Bosc pear, dried yellow flowers and tips of almond, this is dry with good level of acidity and sophistication. Take pleasure in over the next 2-3 years. $16
Barone Pizzini Franciacorta Brut Nature – Under the management of Silvano Brescianini, Barone Pizzini has actually turned into one of the finest estates in Franciacorta. Every sparking cuvée here is significant; the Brut Nature, a mix of 60% Chardonnay and 40% Brut Nature uses outstanding richness, great level of acidity, outstanding perseverance and impressive consistency. Take pleasure in over the next 3-6 years. $29
Valerio Zenato Chiaretto di Bardolino Classico 2021 – Rosato has actually become more crucial throughout Italy over the previous couple of years, and some of the very best examples are from Bardolino, where it is referred to as Chiaretto. Medium-bodied, this is appealing with its freshness, good acidity, and clean, dry surface. Just $10 recommended retail!
Cantina Terlano Lagrein Rosé 2021 – Bright strawberry color with fragrances of fresh strawberries and orange roses, this displays notable complexity and is richer than many other examples of rosato; this has the character and body to be paired with pork and veal dishes. Take pleasure in over the next 2-3 years. $12
Michele Satta Bolgheri Rosso 2021 – Michele Satta produces among the best examples of Bolgheri Superiore with his Piastraia; his less costly Bolgheri Rosso is likewise quite unique. A blend of Sangiovese, Cabernet Sauvignon, Red Wine, Syrah and Teroldego (!) aged in older barriques, this is medium-full and displays attractive tastes of black cherry and plum with an unique note of clove. Pair this red with the majority of red meats or lighter video game over the next 6-8 years. $22
Chiappini Bolgheri Superiore “Guado al Gemoli” 2019 – The classification of Bolgheri Superiore consists of such white wines as Sassicaia and Ornellaia that are world-famous and priced accordingly, so it’s great to taste a Bolgheri Superiore that is rather budget-friendly. This white wine, a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc, from an underrated manufacturer is medium-full and offers excellent richness and intricacy for the cash; even better is the reality that the wine can be delighted in tonight or in another 8 to 10 years’ time. $65
Ornellaia Le Serre Nuove di Ornellaia 2020 – Le Serre Nuove is the second red wine from the famed Ornellaia estate, and it is an exceptional offering. A mix of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot, this is a ripe and tasty red with lively level of acidity and excellent intricacy; there is a prolonged, perfectly well balanced finish with smooth tannins. Enjoy this over the next 8-10 years with a lot of red meats (lamb would be a wonderful match) or let it mature a few extra years. Bolgheri class and Ornellaia design, all for just $60 a bottle!
Pietroso Rosso di Montalcino 2020 – There are so many excellent examples of Rosso di Montalcino, so it’s tough to pick only one. Produced specifically from Sangiovese, similar to its big bro Brunello di Montalcino, Rosso di Montalcino is a timeless representation of this varietal from this area. The 2020 from Pietroso, a little producer situated in the hills above the town of Montalcino, is a pleasure, with scrumptious cherry fruit, round tannins and great level of acidity (2020 was a stunning vintage in Montalcino). Enjoy this over the next 3-5 years. $22
Laura Bianchi at her household’s Castello Monsanto estate
Image © Tom Hyland
Monsanto Chianti Classico Riserva 2019 – Given all the attention paid to Gran Selezione in Chianti Classico there days, the riserva category has too often been neglected. The Monsanto 2019 is a gorgeous, book example of what this white wine type is everything about. Using scents and tastes of morel cherry, currant and thyme, this is medium-full and uses stunning Sangiovese character and intricacy; this is satisfying tonight, but has the structure and harmony to drink well for another years. $28
Bric Cencurio Langhe Nebbiolo 2021 – Langhe Nebbiolo is a terrific option if you can’t afford Barolo or Barbaresco. This underrated produced from Barolo has crafted an excellent version with notable Nebbiolo character including strawberry and orange zest scents, very good acidity (2021 was an exceptional vintage in the Langhe where the grapes for this red wine were sourced) and a lengthy, sublime surface. Best over the next 4 to six years with a range of foods, from pasta to risotto. $22
Le Piane “Mimmo” 2019 – Le Piane, situated in Alto Piemonte, is among the gems of northern Italian viticulture. Proprietor Christoph Künzli, best understood for his Boca, a Nebbiolo/Vespolina mix that is one of Piedmont’s greatest red white wines, likewise crafts numerous other notable red white wines from estate vineyards. Mimmo, a mix of 70% Nebbiolo, 25% Croatina and 5% Vespolina offers stunning aromatics of wild strawberry, blood orange and red poppy, and is a charming red with medium-weight tannins that can be delighted in over the next 6 to 8 years with dishes ranging from veal stew to pork medallions. $27
Tenuta Scerscé Rosso di Valtellina “Nettare” 2019 – You won’t think how classy and flexible Nebbiolo can be until you’ve tasted this wine from Valtellina. Providing great acidity with noteworthy varietal pureness, this is an attractive Nebbiolo meant to be taken pleasure in over the next 4-5 years. $28
Palmento Costanzo Etna Rosso “Nero di Sei” 2019 – There continues to be a lot of excitement about the wines of Etna. This rosso, from one of the territory’s finest estates is as appealing an example at a young age that I have actually tasted in a long time. A mix of 80% Nerello Mascalese and 20% Nerello Cappuccio, the white wine has lovely fragrances of bing cherry, nutmeg and rose petals. Just delicious, whether you enjoy it this evening or in another five to seven years (what a lovely match for duck breast with cherry or orange sauce!) $28