Club Mondo, January '22

Viotti “Albarossa”

Piedmont, IT

What the heck is Albarossa? This grape is certainly very far off the beaten path, even as far as wine geeks are concerned. Albarossa was originally thought to be a crossing of Nebbiolo and Barbera, though after extensive genetic research, it was discovered that the vine thought to be Nebbiolo actually belonged to an old French grape called “Chartus.” Though decidedly not Nebbiolo, Albarossa certainly can masquerade as an incredibly rich expression of it. This one from Viotti is just that: rich, full-bodied and slightly savory, though maintaining a dark ruby color and some floral qualities. Great with fatty meats.

Diego Conterno “Langhe Nascetta”

Piedmont, IT

Winter white alert! Another oft-forgotten grape of Piedmont, Nascetta has come back from the brink of extinction and is responsible for rich, elegant, and incredibly unique wines. The grape lost its luster in the 20th century thanks to the Nebbiolo boom, wherein many producers opted to focus on that production over less-profitable Nascetta. Thanks to a select few producers, though, Nascetta made a resurgence as recently as the 1990s, and achieved coveted DOC status in 2012. This expression from Diego Conterno is medium-bodied and mineral-driven, with hints of pineapple and herbs. Pair me with poultry or creamy mushroom dishes.

Belposto “Montepulciano d’Abruzzo”

Abruzzo, IT

Nothing comforts the soul quite like a juicy, rich glass of Montepulciano. A true 365-days-a-year wine, Montepulciano has gained popularity thanks to its affordability and versatility. The Appenine Mountains help provide some cover for the valley vineyards, though the bright, central Italian sun still allows these grapes to ripen fully. This wine from Belposto is bursting with bright cherries and strawberries, spices, and a hint of grippy tannin. Serve with red sauce-based dishes, or a cozy night by the fire.



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