Challenge Reds for the Daily Slosh

15 Feb

Clearly, my review of the Beronia and Susana Balbo was pretty spot on. People thought that Beronia and pizza was — expletive deleted — great! And some others bought cases of Susana. My work is done.

Can we all agree that Tuscany carries some heavy street cred with those of us who dream of a simpler life, fantastic local food, exquisite wines, stunning country-side, and Monica Belluci? OK, she’s actually from Umbria, but that’s kind of splitting hairs, isn’t it? Why bring this up? Well, there are a bunch of Tuscan wines hitting the shelves this week.

So, who thinks Chianti when they think Tuscan wine? No one? OK, who thinks Chianti when they think straw covered bottles, later to be used for candles? Everyone? Well, there’s a very nice Chianti Classico hitting shelves this week – 2008 Valiano Poggio Teo Chianti Classico.

pog.jpgSpicy, almost sharp with acidity that screams at you, in a Dickensian way – “More food please!” I guess, “sharp” isn’t a complimentary term usually, but in this case I mean it to be. Foods that are acidic, like tomato sauces, need wines that can compete without overrunning it. This wine is perfect for that. Trust me.  Plus, when you’re done, you can put a candle in the bottle sans wicker and reminisce.

Staying in Italy but straying north, we head to Piedmont where they create some of the most subtle red wines anywhere. One of these is Dolcetto – straight forward, lots of fruit, with a perception of sweetness sometime. I’ve recommended these to simple Valpolicella lovers. Not the lovers – they’re not simple. Sorry. The Valpolicella they prefer is. This week there’s 2010 Pecchenino San Luigi Dolcetto di Dogliani (#303479 $19.95). Keeping Matt Kramer’s ( treatise on wine in mind, I’d say it’s balanced with a great proportion, and it’s aromas mirror it’s finish in power – full stop. It would do well as a sip-alone- wine, I think. I mean we have to find some of these because we do drink a lot of wine by itself, he says sheepishly. I call it standing around wine. This would be a great standing around wine. I’m going out on a limb and recommending it to MN.

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