Birthday/Aglianico, 58 Port, ++

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Tasted September 22, 2015 by Loren Sonkin with 343 views

Introduction

Yesterday, was my turn to host Tasting Group. As it turned out, it was also my 57th birthday. I love it when a plan comes together. ;-) Eight of us (with a visit from my wife) sampled the wines over about 3.5 hours. It was a lot of fun. The Aglianico's showed quite well. Not a dog in the bunch. Some surprises. In general, I seemed to like the younger and cheaper ones. Perhaps that is a sign of a mid life crisis, but I suspect it has more to do with just how long it takes for the better Aglianico's to actually come around. There were some leftovers, so I will re-sample tonight.

All the wines were served blind except the Port. Breads, crackers and cheeses were served with them.

Flight 1 - A white starter (1 note)

I always wanted to try a Cornelissen wine. IIRC, this was my first. It did not disappoint.

White
N.V. Frank Cornelissen MunJebel Bianco 9 Italy, Sicily, Sicilia
89 points
Not sure how to score this, but I did enjoy it. After reading CT notes, I stood this up like a red. When we poured, we were careful not to tilt the bottle back, and it was clear. The re-pours, however, were cloudy. Orange in color. The nose is more about an apple cider than wine. Also some pears and spice. Maybe some orange too. Full bodied. On the palate, this is unique for sure. Spiced. Apples and pears. Nice acidity. The more I drank, the more used to it I got. Really interesting experience although I don't see myself drinking this regularly.

Flight 2 - The Aglianico Flight (9 notes)

We tried to get a range of wines. Most were opened and allowed to breathe for 8 hours but a few were pop and pour.

Red
2010 Grifalco Aglianico del Vulture Italy, Basilicata, Aglianico del Vulture
90 points
I had this in last place BUT, it was the groups WOTN with a couple of 1st and 2nd places votes each. Certainly, a great value. Purple in color. The nose has dark cherries and Christmas spice. Tannic. Black cherries. Slightly ripe/sweet. Got better all night. Delicious.
Red
2013 Cantine del Notaio L'Atto Basilicata IGT Italy, Basilicata, Basilicata IGT
91 points
Ruby in color. The nose has xmas spice, celery and black cherries. On the palate, this has a nice soft complexity to it that I liked among the other tannic wines. Black cherries and tobacco, it had a Cab Franc quality to it. Despite its youth, it seemed ready to drink now. I thought someone said, this is available under $20, so great value.
Red
2008 Tenuta del Portale Aglianico del Vulture Riserva Italy, Basilicata, Aglianico del Vulture
91 points
Purple in color. The nose has black cherries and spice. This is bigger with firm tannins. Black cherries on the palate. Also some cigar tobacco. Good acidity. Good finish.
Red
2009 Elena Fucci Aglianico del Vulture Titolo Italy, Basilicata, Aglianico del Vulture
93 points
I really liked this one. Inky purple in color. The nose has black cherries, slight celery and xmas spice. Very tannic and needs time. Reminds me of the Bocca de lupo. Lots of black cherry fruit. Delicious if dense right now. Give it a decade.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
2010 Tenuta del Portale Aglianico del Vulture Le Vigne a Capanno Italy, Basilicata, Aglianico del Vulture
92 points
Purple/ruby in color. The nose is black cherries and xmas spice. Great silky texture. Medium tannins. Some complexity. Nice black cherry fruit. Good balance. Ready to go now.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
2007 Fattoria Galardi Terra di Lavoro Italy, Campania, Roccamonfina IGT
93 points
I thought this would have shown better. I suspect it just needs more time, but who knows. In any event, it was great, even if it did not distinguish itself from the pack. purple in color. The nose has black cherries, leather and a bit of spice. On the palate, this has tart cherries (in a good way). Great texture. Seems tannic and tight. Long finish. Kept improving all night and there is a little bit left in the bottle that will be interesting to try on day 2.
3 people found this helpful Comments (3)
Red
2006 Salvatore Molettieri Taurasi Cinque Querce Italy, Campania, Taurasi DOCG
90 points
Another wine that I had higher hopes for. Again, perhaps just in a tight spot right now (or not). It will be interesting to revisit later today. Inky purple in color. The nose has black cherries and xmas spice. Very smooth. Tannic. Black cherries. Excellent wine but lacks complexity that I might expect. Otoh, no way I though this was 9 years old.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
1999 Mastroberardino Taurasi Radici Riserva Italy, Campania, Taurasi DOCG
93 points
I liked this more than the group. Again, no way, blind, did I think this was 16 years old. Purple/ruby in color. The nose is black cherries, spice and slightly dusty. Juicy acidity on the palate. Lots of ripe black cherry fruit. Medium tannins. delicious.
2 people found this helpful Comment
Red
2011 Fattoria Galardi Terra di Lavoro Italy, Campania, Roccamonfina IGT
93 points
My WOTN. The group seemed split on this, love it or hate it. Inky purple in color. The nose has black cherries and x-mas spice. On the palate, this seemed quite young and powerful. Juicy black cherries and a wall of tannins. It was a bit drying on the finish from the tannins at this point. The fruit is quite ripe here and maybe on its own that would be an issue for some, but in this setting, it is delicious.

Flight 3 - Dessert (1 note)

Before the wine, we split some Three Floyd's Zombie Dust beer that i recently picked up. I am not an IPA guy and was not thinking I would like it, but it was good. Not at all as hoppy as I expected and it had a nice sourness to it.
Then along with Chocolate covered lace cookies and/or locally produced blue cheese, this was a birth year wine. I believe it was bottled in 09.

Red - Fortified
1958 Krohn Porto Colheita Portugal, Douro, Porto
94 points
Great showing IMO. The bottle was opened and allowed to breathe for 12 hours. Like all 1958's, it is not yet fully mature, and hopefully with some time left to get there. ;-)
That said, this is iced tea/brown in color. The nose is great; nutty with some caramel and even slight maple. On the palate, viscous, concentrated and nutty. Good acidity. Seems fresh to me and not tired or stale. Nice finish. Couldn't help having a bit more!

Closing

We finished with some single malts. A Maccallan 17 Fine Oak and Bowmore 18. Today is a bit foggy, but that is a great start to the year!

Spending your birthday laughing and talking with friends and loved ones along with great wine. It doesn't get much better. I am truly lucky!

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