Wednesday, December 30, 2009

The Finest of the Season!

I’ve had the good fortune of attending two amazing sparkling wine tastings over the last several weeks. Ever since then, I have become very interested in the subject. With New Year’s Eve coming up, I was curious what the bollicine scene was like around Naples, so I called on a few friends for their input. Here are their responses:

Tomasso Luongo, professional sommelier and president of AIS Napoli (Association of Italian Sommeliers, Naples) likes Italian sparkling wines, but when it comes down to it, he is a big fan of champagne “Mi attraggono per la capacità di esprimere: grande finezza aromatica, sferzante acidità e vellutata cremosità delle bollicine. In other words, he is attracted by its ability to express itself; great aromatic elegance, striking acidity, and the velvety, creaminess of the bubbles. Viva la France!

Mimmo Brasiello, voted the Campania region’s best nonprofessional sommelier, picked Italian sparkling Giulio Ferrari Riserva del Fondatore. I looked this up on the Italian Wine Hub website and I learned that ‘the wine is made with Chardonnay grapes cultivated in the Trentino region, following the lead of Giulio Ferrari, who first planted the variety there at the beginning of the 20th century, after experimenting with the variety in France. To the nose it reveals perfume of lavender and orange blooms, melon and bergamot. In the mouth it is fresh and long lasting. A precious wine for special occasions.’ Hmmmm.

But what are people buying?

The best selling bollicine this season according to Fabrizio Erbaggio,professional sommelier and owner of Ciao Vino, are as follows: in the category of champagne; Dom Ruinart 1996 - Krug – Crystal. As far as Italian Champenoise; Giulio Ferrari - Annamaria Clementi - Monte Rossa Cabochòn. According to Fabrizio, these are top quality wines, and it is hard for him to pick a favorite. He, for example, has an emotional attachment to Bruno Palliard, particularly the Assemblage Millésimé 1996. He has been sharing this champagne with friends on numerous occasions in the past few weeks thus adding the memory of good times shared con i amici to his overall experience. Isn’t that what celebrating the New Year should be about? Well said, Fabrizio!

Tanti Auguri!

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