Italy's Great Unknowns

     Thursday July 20, 2017

Reservations Closed
Course Pairing / Description Wine
Hors D' Oeuvres Fennel, Bacon, Gorgonzola Stuffed Mushrooms (Caramelized Onions, Basil Pesto) Red Pepper Flake & Parmesan Crispy Calamari (Roasted Tomato and Piquillo Pepper Aioli)
Fontanafredda’s estate stretches out over more than 250 acres. The estate vineyards are located in the villages of Serralunga d’Alba, Diano d’Alba and Barolo. At each vintage, grapes are consigned to Fontanafredda by nearly 400 growers in the Langhe and Roero, whose loyalty to the company has endured for generations. The viticulture is carried exclusively on hillsides with vineyards which have an average altitude between 200 and 400 meters. Mainly calcareous, the soil can differ within the space of just a few dozen meters: at times loose with a sand content, at other times, firmer with a higher proportion of silt, and above-all clay. The climate is typically continental, with wide seasonal variations in the temperatures, while the rainfall is concentrated over the spring and autumn months and is highly variable, which is what produces such extraordinarily different vintages. One of Italy's most fashionable white wines, Gavi di Gavi is noted for its acute dryness and fresh, flinty acidity. The wine has a bright straw-yellow color with greenish highlights. It has a full, delicate, elegant bouquet which brings flowers and fresh fruit to mind, mostly lemons, lilies of the valley and green apples. Its palate is attractively young, dry, fresh and well-balanced. As an inviting aperitif, it whets the appetite in its pairings with hors-d'oeuvres and fish dishes. It is perfect in summer, but there are no seasonal limitations to the serving of this delightful wine.
Fontanafredda Gavi Di Gavi 2016
Hors D' Oeuvres Fennel, Bacon, Gorgonzola Stuffed Mushrooms (Caramelized Onions, Basil Pesto) Red Pepper Flake & Parmesan Crispy Calamari (Roasted Tomato and Piquillo Pepper Aioli)
Located near Verona in the province of Veneto in northeast Italy, Casa Vinicola Bertani is one of the region's most important and influential wine producers. Bertani produces a full spectrum of the classic wines of the Veneto and has enjoyed a reputation for quality from the start. Bertani was founded in 1857 by brothers Gaetano and Giovan Battista Bertani. Prosperous wine merchants who believed that quality winemaking held the key to the future, the Bertanis invested their funds in buying some of the finest vineyards in the province and making their own wines. Consequently, unlike most other local producers, Bertani owns its own vineyards and so is able to oversee the entire winemaking cycle from start to finish. The Soave Serole is the most up-to-date interpretation of Bertani’s Soave, a wine that has historically been present on the most prestigious tables all over the world. Sereole is a Soave with a lively and unmistakeable personality. It is made exclusively with Garganega grapes, the most elegant native white grape from the Verona area, grown in the Sereole vineyard, a veritable cru on the hill between Soave and Monteforte d’Alpone. The slightly late harvest, combined with fermentation of the must in large oak barrels, adds freshness and richness of flavor which marry well with a light ageing in wood, to give the wine plushness and complexity. This wine has a straw-yellow color with golden highlights; the floral bouquet has overtones of elderflower and pear, developing into sweeter aromas of yellow-fleshed fruits such as apricot, pineapple and melon. It is plush on the palate, balanced with sapid notes that enhance the superior structure.
Bertani Soave Serole 2014
Soup Course Tuscan Clam, White Wine, Lemon & Roasted Garlic Broth (New Potatoes, Pimento, Charred Summer Corn and Herbs)
A favorite of the jet set at Sardinia's chic resorts, La Cala is the ultimate definition of the Vermentino grape. It is romantically named for a small, secluded cove fringed by violet-colored thistles on the edge of the Sella & Mosca estate. Few wines rival La Cala for its exceptional affinity with seafood, thanks to the very subtle presence of a natural marine salinity in the wine, credited to the Mediterranean location of Sella & Mosca's Vermentino vineyards. After harvest, selected grape bunches are exposed to the warm autumnal sunlight and undergo a brief, natural drying process. Following a gentle pressing, the juices are vinified under temperature-controlled conditions. The La Cala is of a pale straw color with tints of lemon-green. Its nose is very intense with notes of citrus. It is delightfully floral. On that palate it is crisp and dry with youthful vitality and freshness.
Sella & Mosca “La Cala” Vermentino 2015
Pasta Course Sea Salt & Black Pepper Roasted Porchetta (Pan Jus, Oven Roasted Rosemary Potatoes, Roasted Pepper Pesto and Asparagus)
In Italy and elsewhere in Europe, wine connoisseurs and industry professionals rate Sella & Mosca among Italy's most outstanding wine estates. Sella & Mosca's Piani estate in Sardinia constitutes the second largest contiguous vineyard in Italy and counts itself among the country's most impressive wineries. Situated in the northwest corner of Sardinia, just inland from the pretty, historic port of Alghero, this 1,600-acre property with more than 1,200 acres of vines is one of the largest wine estates in Europe. Sella & Mosca, which celebrated its centennial in 1999, was founded by Messrs. Sella and Mosca, two Piedmontese businessmen revered to this day for their prominent roles in the Risorgimento (Italy's 19th-century unification movement). Today, the property is owned by Campari. As Sardinia's foremost wine producer, Sella & Mosca is renowned for premium wines made exclusively from estate-grown grapes. In addition to native varieties such as Vermentino and Cannonau, the winery has successfully pioneered the introduction of international grape varieties, notably Cabernet Sauvignon. The Sella & Mosca Cannonau is initially dark ruby red and during maturation, it loses intensity and takes on a warmer tone. It has a mesmerizing scent, redolent of violets. It is warm, dry, and harmonious with plummy fruit flavors and an aristocratic oak overtone.
Sella & Mosca Cannonau di Sardegna 2013
Game Course Charred Rabbit Sausage & White Bean Fricasse (Grilled Oyster Mushroom, San Marzanno Tomatoes and Shaved Pecorino Cheese)
Ripasso is a wine from Verona’s country tradition which is made using a very old winemaking practice called “ripasso”. This technique involves reintroducing the young Valpolicella wine to the skins used for Amarone at the end of the fermentation. The wine becomes warm and mature. In Ripasso, there is the freshness and drinkability of the Valpolicella, but also the richer and more concentrated sensations of chocolate and sour cherry from the dried grapes. The harvest is done by hand at the end of September. Fermentation takes place in special wide and shallow steel tanks, which are ideal for increasing contact between the must and skins, at a temperature of 20 to 22°C and lasts for about two weeks. The second fermentation (“ripasso”) takes place in March on the Amarone skins that still have a good content of active yeasts, which allow the wine to ferment a second time. The wine ages in 750-litre Veronese-Bertani French oak barrels for 9 months. The juice is 85% Corvina Veronese, 10% Molinara and 5% Rondinella. The vines are vertical-trellised, with Guyot pruning and a planting density of 2000 plants per acre. The Bertani Valpolicella Ripasso has an intense purple-red color with purplish highlights. On the nose, it has a very clean and intense aroma of ripe red fruit with hints of dark fruit, such as bramble, blackcurrant and ripe cherry. It is velvety and well-balanced, full and round while maintaining a lively and intense grip, with a sapid after taste.
Bertani Valpolicella Ripasso 2012
Dessert Course Flourless Dark Chocolate Cake (Blackberry And Red Wine Caramel, Lightly Sweetened and Salted Mascarpone-Espresso Mousse
The Mazzei family, historic owners of Tuscany's renowned Fonterutoli estate and one of Italy’s most highly regarded winemaking families, are proud to present Zisola, an elegant Sicilian red wine of great complexity, concentration and aging potential. Made from Sicily's indigenous Nero d’Avola grape, limited-production Zisola comes from the Mazzei family property in southeastern Sicily, just outside the magnificent town of Noto. Here, in this alluring spot rich in history and culture, the Mazzei family discovered unexpressed winemaking potential and have pioneered an ambitious project to bring that potential to light. In fact, the thumbprint that appears on the label is that of Francesco Mazzei who, together with his father, Lapo and his brother, Filippo, is dedicated to placing the Mazzei family's mark of uncompromised quality on this exciting viticultural region. Vineyards currently cover approximately 42 acres of the estate, mainly calcareous soils planted chiefly to Nero d'Avola vines trained in the traditional alberello (free standing) style. The vines enjoy a west/southwest exposure and benefit from a steady sea breeze, which cools the vineyards during the hot summer days and warms the land in the winter. This exceptional microclimate permits ideal ripening of the grapes and yields an elegant, aromatic red wine. These grapes are hand harvested in early September and undergo temperature-controlled fermentation in stainless steel tanks at 82-86?F for 14-16 days, with a maceration period of up to 10 days at 68-75?F. The wine is aged for 10 months in French barrels, 1/3 new. The Zisola is of a deep ruby red color. It has aromas of wild berries and hints of spice. It is a medium-bodied wine, with intense flavors of blackberry and dark cherry, accented by notes of violet, pepper and exotic spices.
Zisola Nero D’Avola 2014