Pop's Wines & Spirits

Ted's Blog
Great wine doesn't have to cost a lot!

July 19, 2017

Italy Vacation
6 different Cities Visited / 6 wines you can't live without!
"Early May had me going to Italy for vacation and what's not to like. House wine is really great. The food is amazing and ultra fresh. The AutoGrill's along the Autostrada highways have better quality food than any Rest stop in America. And there's something special at the toll plaza when you enter the correct number of Euro's to hear it say "Arrivaderci!"

Great wine doesn't have to cost a lot!
Ted Clark, Wine Consultant. Pop's Wines & Spirits,
July, 2017

1st Stop - Emilia Romagna, village of Imola
"Home of the BEST winery in Emilia Romagna - TRE MONTI!!

The old churches in these towns have the most amazing mosaics on the ceilings, many dating back 1000 years. Almost every church has so much history.

Tre Monti's Sangiovese di Romagna is possibly the greatest Sangiovese made in Italy. Dry, Harmonious, Dangerously Drinkable, Certified Organic. It's my house wine at home when I want to be reminded of what the wines taste like when visiting the Italian countryside."

2016 Sangiovese di Romagna, Superiore, Campo di Mezzo, Tre Monti, 750ml
$16.25 - Good Wine Stores
$14.62 - Pop's Single Bottle Price
$13.00 - Pop's Mixed Case Price
$146.25 - Pop's Case Price

2nd stop - Florence
"Home of all the Chianti wines. So much to see in Florence: The Galleria dell'Accademia displays Michelangelo’s “David” sculpture. The Uffizi Gallery exhibits Botticelli’s “The Birth of Venus” and da Vinci’s “Annunciation.”, Ponte Vecchio (Great view/shopping).
On the way to Florence from Emilia Romagna there is a short cut route that takes you through the mountains to Florence. It's a beautiful way to see Italy albeit a lot of hair-pin turns through small towns. One town was Rufina. I'd always seen it on wine labels, but never knew it was a village name.

Castello del Trebbio is a small estate in Rufina producing world class Chianti wines. Their 2011 Chianti Rufina Riserva is sublime. Aged 30 months in oak barrels, it drinks better than all the big names! A must buy for any Tuscan wine lover!"

2011 Chianti Rufina Riserva Lastricato, Castello del Trebbio, 750ml
$37.35 - Good Wine Stores
$33.61 - Pop's Single Bottle Price
$29.80 - Pop's Mixed Case Price
$168.07 - Pop's Case Price (6)

3rd Stop - Montalcino - Home of Brunello!
"Highly recommend spending a few days in Montalcino as there are over 75 great wineries to visit.

This trip took us to a large castle in the center of town that showcases several different producers wines and educates the public on the differences between all the estates and growers.

We were able to sample 7 different Brunello's and the winner?

2012 Campogiovanni Brunello di Montalcino - Very traditional and yet modern and sleek with a smooth finish.

Happy to get some when I got back to NY and very happy to present it to you today...

96 Points - James Suckling
"In a traditional style, showing beefy tannins and savory earth notes, with a core of leather and cherry flavors. Shows some sweetness midpalate and picks up energy on the long finish. Hangs together, ending in an uplifting, resonant manner..."

96 Points and less than $50 a bottle... that's a winner!

2012 Brunello di Montalcino, Campogiovanni, 750ml
$64.80 - Good Wine Stores
$58.32 - Pop's Single Bottle Price
$51.84 - Pop's Mixed Case Price
$291.60 - Pop's Case Price (6)

4th Stop - Amalfi Coast: Positano
"Anyone who travels to Rome, owes themselves a visit to the Amalfi Coast. Walking through the village of Positano's narrow walkways of shops leading down to the beach, there are numerous restaurants serving locally caught seafood with pastas. At Chez Black's we snuggled up with some spaghetti and seafood and were in the mood for a rustic red that drank like Barolo, but not as pricey.

Aglianico! Awesome pairing! A Home Run!

2013 Aglianico, Cinque Querce, Salvatore Molettieri.

Drop-dead Gorgeous wine.

A vibrant, full-bodied red, the 2013 Cinque Querce offers tons of complexity in its black cherries, violets, spices, minerals and menthol, showing superb density and richness. Paired perfectly with the meal and left us with a bright smile before heading back up the walkways to our Hotel in Praiano."

2013 Aglianico, Irpinia, Cinque Querce, Salvatore Malettieri, 750ml
$23.09 - Good Wine Stores
$20.78 - Pop's Single Bottle Price
$18.47 - Pop's Mixed Case Price
$207.81 - Pop's Case Price

5th stop - Modena, Emilia Romagna
"Home of Balsamic Vinegars, Parmagiano Regiano Cheeses, Mortadella, Coppo, not to leave out Procuitto - the best Hams, Cheeses and Balsamico's leaves you thirsting for dry reds.

If you go, they have an awesome market open every day where you can get all the good stuff for pennies on the dollar.

Modena wine-wise is best known for it's selection of Lambrusco wines. These aren't the Riunite sweet wines but rather, amazing dry reds with body, texture and flavor.

Lambrusco is not part of the upper echelon of Italian wine. To begin with, it is not expensive. It comes from Emilia-Romagna and it's red and sparking. Actually, foaming is closer to the truth. When you open a bottle of this 'boutique' Lambrusuco (Grasparossa is the particular type of the Lambrusco grape, and Castelvetro is the region from which it hails), it really does foam in your glass, a big purple expanse of bubbles. But then it settles down a bit and, in the presence of a big plate of pasta with meat sauce (Bolognese) or a pizza or even a ham and cheese sandwich, it can even become a little elegant, but mostly it's just plain delicious.

A wine to be drunk, not talked about."

Lambrusco Gasparossa di Castelvetro, Barbolini, 750ml
$16.05 - Good Wine Stores
$14.44 - Pop's Single Bottle Price
$12.84 - Pop's Mixed Case Price
$144.45 - Pop's Case Price

6th stop - Piedmont - Barolo Country!
"Barolo is a city as well as a wine. The city is very touristy so I suggest you head to the hills and visit towns like La Morra, Neive and Verduno.

In La Morra, Legendary winery Cordero di Montezemolo is a must visit.

Since 1340, 19 generations one after another, have managed the Monfalletto property in the town of La Morra, the center of the production of Barolo wine. The historical single-body vineyard area of 28 hectares (69 acres), rare for the area, extends over all sides of the hill.

Being one contiguous plot, they can control everything much easier than smaller growers who need to navigate the local roads to transport their grapes and wines. They also can farm Organic without worry.

All of Cordero's wines are delicious: Mouthwatering white Arneis, High acid and Bright Dolcetto, Densely rich Barbera, Harmonious Nebbiolo and decadent Barolo's that'll age forever. As proof, When Alberto comes to town, he packs up some old wines and takes wine buyers to lunch in NYC with wines from the 1960's and 1970's. I have been fortunate enough to attend a lunch like that. Magical!! The bottles are on the wall above the Piedmont section here at Pop's.

Cordero's best value?? His 2015 Nebbiolo labeled as "Langhe Nebbiolo" drinks like Barolo and 1/2 the price... 2015 is a gorgeous vintage and you can taste it in this Outstanding Full Bodied red!"

2015 Nebbiolo, Langhe, Cordero di Montezemolo, 750ml
$30.89 - Good Wine Stores
$27.80 - Pop's Single Bottle Price
$24.71 - Pop's Mixed Case Price
$278.01 - Pop's Case Price


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