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 Editorial  Share this article     Summary of Wine Tasting column Events 
  Wine Tasting Issue 70, January 2009   
Comparing Rosso Conero RiservaComparing Rosso Conero Riserva Wines of the MonthWines of the Month  Contents 
Issue 69, December 2008 Follow DiWineTaste on Follow DiWineTaste on TwitterIssue 71, February 2009

Comparing Rosso Conero Riserva

One of the greatest glories of Marches' enology, Rosso Conero Riserva is mainly produced with Montepulciano grape and a small part of Sangiovese grape

 Among the many interesting wines of Marches region and which are emerging in recent years, there is one which is getting more and more attention from wine lovers, not only in Italy, but also in the world. Rosso Conero Riserva is one of the two wines of Marches - together with Vernaccia di Serrapetrona - to be ranked as a Denominazione d'Origine Controllata e Garantita wine (DOCG, Denomination of Controlled and Guaranteed Origin), the highest quality level in Italy. Rosso Conero Riserva was promoted to DOCG wine in September 2004. On this regard, it should be noticed in Marches is also produced Rosso Conero - a wine belonging to Denominazione d'Origine Controllata (DOC, Denomination of Controlled Origin), a category to which belonged the riserva style before September 2004 - and the denomination reserved to the reserve style is rightly and simply defined as Conero DOCG. As opposed to Rosso Conero DOC, before being commercialized, Conero DOCG must age for at least two years and must have a minimum alcohol by volume of 12.5%.

 Despite the production disciplinary permits the use of Montepulciano grape for at least 85% and for the remaining part of Sangiovese, producers usually prefer to make Conero DOCG with Montepulciano grape only. Montepulciano grape is an interesting grape which is mainly found in Abruzzo and Marches, regions from which are produced the most representative wines made from this grape. Montepulciano is also found in Molise and in Apulia, as well as in Umbria, Latium, Sardinia and Calabria. According to the production disciplinary, Conero DOCG must be aged for at least two years in the producer's cellar before being commercialized. This procedure is generally done by the producer by using both the barrique and the cask, although they usually prefer the small French barrel instead of the more traditional and large cask. Thanks to the typical qualities of Montepulciano grape as well as to the aging in wood, Conero DOCG has good possibilities of aging in bottle, even of more than 10 years.

 

Wines of the Tasting

 Montepulciano is a grape characterized by a good content in coloring substances and of polyphenolic substances, therefore the wines produced with this grape - including Conero DOCG - are usually characterized by intense colors and low transparency, as well as an appreciable astringency. Just like what happened in the neighboring Abruzzo region, the results obtained in Marches with Montepulciano have been of remarkable importance, allowing the best qualities of this grape to emerge, for many years used as a simple grape only suited to be added to important varieties and to give body. The results obtained in Abruzzo and in Marches have fully demonstrated the great potentials of Montepulciano and, by adopting quality viticultural and wine making principles, have been produced wines of remarkable prestige, with rich and complex organoleptic qualities. According to a viticultural point of view, Montepulciano is a variety which tends to ripe later than other grapes, therefore the best results are obtained in areas where the climate is mild or moderately hot, such as in central Italy.


The trhree Rosso
Conero Riserva wines of our comparative tasting
The trhree Rosso Conero Riserva wines of our comparative tasting

 Our comparative tasting will examine three Rosso Conero Riserva wines produced with different aging techniques and using both the Montepulciano grape as well as Sangiovese, that in this wine can be found for a maximum of 15%. The first wine of our comparative tasting is Garofoli's Rosso Conero Riserva Grosso Agontano, produced with 100% Montepulciano, aged for 12 months in barrique and for 18 in bottle. The second wine we will examine is Fazi Battaglia's Rosso Conero Riserva Passo del Lupo, produced with 85% of Montepulciano and for 15% of Sangiovese, aged in barrique for 24 months and for 10 in bottle. The last wine of our comparative tasting in Umani Ronchi's Rosso Conero Riserva Cumaro, produced with 100% Montepulciano and aged in barrique for 14 months and for 8 in bottle. The vintages of the wines of the tasting will be the ones currently commercialized and will be evaluated at the temperature of 18°C (64°F), served - as usual - in three ISO tasting glasses.

 

Appearance Analysis

 The aspect of Rosso Conero Riserva is mainly determined by the characteristics of Montepulciano grape, to which are also added the effects of the aging in wood as well as the possible presence of Sangiovese grape. As opposed to Montepulciano, Sangiovese has a lower coloring property, therefore making the wines in which it is present more transparent. Also the aging in wood, with its slow but useful oxidizing effect - which takes place thanks to the passage of oxygen through the pores of wood - give the wine darker and deeper colors. In the first year of life, Rosso Conero Riserva shows a very intense ruby red color, with a pretty low transparency, sometimes being impenetrable to light. Nuances will show a ruby red color, even though in some cases it is possible to notice purple red hues. With the evolution and with time, Conero gets a garnet red color, a quality which can also be appreciated in its nuances, and then brick red hues.

 Let's begin the appearance analysis of our comparative tasting from Garofoli's Rosso Conero Riserva Grosso Agontano. In order to correctly do appearance analysis, we will need a white surface which will allow us to properly assess color, such as a white cloth or a sheet of paper. By tilting the glass over the white surface, we will observe the color at the base of the glass, where it will be noticed an intense ruby red color and a low transparency. The same color will be noticed in nuances, which can be observed at the edge of the wine, towards the opening of the glass. Let's now pass to the second wine - Fazi Battaglia's Rosso Conero Riserva Passo del Lupo - in which can be observed an intense ruby red color and nuances of the same color. Also the transparency of this wine is pretty low, although being a little higher than the previous wine. The color and nuances of the third wine, Umani Ronchi's Rosso Conero Riserva Cumaro, are not very different from the previous ones, although in this case can be observed a deeper and darker ruby red color, with a very low transparency, almost impenetrable to light.

 

Olfactory Analysis

 Rosso Conero Riserva, also thanks to the long period of aging before being commercialized, it is a wine generally characterized by a pretty interesting olfactory profile. Despite this wine undergoes a long aging in wood, it is Montepulciano grape, and marginally Sangiovese, to contribute in a significant way to the olfactory profile of Rosso Conero Riserva. This grape in fact characterizes its wines with intense aromas of fruits and flowers, in particular black cherry, plum and violet. Among the other fruit aromas which can be perceived in Rosso Conero Riserva are mentioned blackberry and blueberry, sometimes black currant as well, which with time will evolve in sensations of jams. Among flower aromas, besides violet, in Conero DOCG can sometimes be perceived the aroma of dried rose. Among the other aromas which can be met in this wine are mentioned vanilla, chocolate, cocoa, carob, tobacco, cinnamon, licorice, clover, mace and leather, as well as balsamic hints of menthol and eucalyptus.


 

 We will begin the olfactory analysis of the wines of our comparative tasting from Garofoli's Rosso Conero Riserva Grosso Agontano. The initial phase of the olfactory analysis has the purpose of examining the so called opening aromas, that is the aromatic qualities perceived to the nose at the first smell and without swirling the glass. In this way will be perceived the aromatic substances which volatilize with a small quantity of oxygen. By holding the glass in vertical position and without swirling, we will proceed with the first smell from which will be perceived intense, clean and refined aromas of black cherry, plum and violet, qualities which are frequently met in Rosso Conero Riserva and which identify it. After having swirled the glass, in order to favor a proper oxygenation of the wine, we will proceed with the second smell, therefore completing the olfactory profile of this first wine. From the glass will be appreciated aromas of toasted wood - this wine ages in barrique for 18 months - as well as aromas of blueberry, chocolate, licorice, vanilla, tobacco and a pleasing balsamic touch of eucalyptus.

 Let's now examine the second wine of our tasting: Fazi Battaglia's Rosso Conero Riserva Passo del Lupo. As opposed to the other wines, in this one is present Sangiovese grape. The first smell will offer to the nose intense, clean and pleasing opening aromas of plum, black cherry and blackberry, as well as the usual violet. After having swirled the glass, we will proceed with the second smell which will complete the wine's profile with blueberry, tobacco, vanilla, cinnamon, chocolate, pink pepper, mace and a pleasing balsamic touch of menthol. Also the opening of the third wine - Umani Ronchi's Rosso Conero Riserva Cumaro - offers to the nose the usual aromas of plum and black cherry, to which are added black currant, not found in the other two wines. After having swirled the glass, in order to favor the development of other aromas, let's proceed with the second smell which will allow the appreciation of the aromas of violet, blueberry, blackberry, vanilla, chocolate, cinnamon, tobacco, clover and the usual, as well as pleasing, balsamic touch of menthol.

 

Gustatory Analysis

 Rosso Conero Riserva has a very interesting and full gustatory profile, with a structure which can be frequently defined as robust. Montepulciano, the grape used for the production of this wine, as well as the long aging, give the wine remarkable gustatory qualities, in which can be appreciated evident alcohol and astringency, balanced by a pleasing roundness. In wines produced with Sangiovese, will be noticed - as opposed to the ones produced with 100% Montepulciano - a pleasing crispness, therefore contributing to the balance of the wine. The attack of Rosso Conero Riserva is generally characterized by an evident astringency - caused both from the grape and the aging in wood - as well as an evident burning sensation given by alcohol. This initial sensation is promptly balanced by roundness and smoothness given both from the aging in wood and from time. The correspondence of the wine is generally very good, in particular for the flavors of black cherry and plum.

 We will begin the phase of the tasting from Garofoli's Rosso Conero Riserva Grosso Agontano. The attack of this first wine is characterized by an evident astringency, although not aggressive, in which can be appreciated a good quantity of alcohol, everything well balanced by a pleasing roundness, given by the aging in barrique. Let's now proceed with the second wine of our comparative tasting: Fazi Battaglia's Rosso Conero Riserva Passo del Lupo. The attack of this Rosso Conero Riserva is characterized by a well perceptible astringency and well balanced by alcohol, with a pleasing roundness and a more robust structure than the previous wine. It should also be noticed how the presence of Sangiovese makes this wine more crisp than the previous wine. The attack of the third wine of our comparative tasting - Umani Ronchi's Rosso Conero Riserva Cumaro - is characterized by a more evident astringency and a more robust body, as well as a pleasing roundness and a very good balance obtained from the contribution of alcohol.

 

Final Considerations

 Besides the good correspondence to the nose, in particular the flavors of black cherry and plum, Rosso Conero Riserva is a wine characterized by a good taste-olfactory persistence. The finish of Garofoli's Rosso Conero Riserva Grosso Agontano is persistent with intense flavors of black cherry, plum and blueberry, a pretty typical finish in this famous wine from Marches. Also the finish of Fazi Battaglia's Rosso Conero Riserva Passo del Lupo is persistent with intense and pleasing flavors of black cherry, plum and blackberry. The finish of Umani Ronchi's Rosso Conero Riserva Cumaro, besides being persistent, leaves in the mouth a more robust sensation of structure than he previous wines, where it can be perceived intense and pleasing flavors of black cherry, plum and black currant. Moreover, it should be noticed the final sensation the wines leave in the mouth in relation to the respective times of aging in wood, as well as the different sensations of roundness.

 






 Editorial  Share this article     Summary of Wine Tasting column Events 
  Wine Tasting Issue 70, January 2009   
Comparing Rosso Conero RiservaComparing Rosso Conero Riserva Wines of the MonthWines of the Month  Contents 
Issue 69, December 2008 Follow DiWineTaste on Follow DiWineTaste on TwitterIssue 71, February 2009

Wines of the Month


 

Score legend

Fair    Pretty Good    Good
Very Good    Excellent
Wine that excels in its category Wine that excels in its category
Good value wine Good value wine
Prices are to be considered as indicative. Prices may vary according to the country
or the shop where wines are bought




Collio Friulano Belvedere 2007, Primosic (Friuli Venezia Giulia, Italy)
Collio Friulano Belvedere 2007
Primosic (Friuli Venezia Giulia, Italy)
Grapes: Friulano
Price: € 18.00 Score: Wine that excels in its category
Collio Friulano Belvedere shows a greenish yellow color and nuances of greenish yellow, very transparent. The nose reveals intense, clean, pleasing and refined aromas that start with hints of pear, peach and pineapple followed by aromas of broom, hawthorn, almond and apple. The mouth has good correspondence to the nose, a crisp attack and however balanced by alcohol, good body, intense flavors. The finish is persistent with flavors of apple, peach and pineapple. Collio Friulano Belvedere ages in steel tanks.
Food Match: Vegetable soups, Pasta and risotto with fish and crustaceans, Sauteed fish



Collio Bianco Klin 2004, Primosic (Friuli Venezia Giulia, Italy)
Collio Bianco Klin 2004
Primosic (Friuli Venezia Giulia, Italy)
Grapes: Sauvignon Blanc (40%), Chardonnay (30%), Ribolla Gialla (25%), Picolit (5%)
Price: € 33.00 Score: Wine that excels in its category
Collio Bianco Klin shows a brilliant straw yellow color and nuances of straw yellow, very transparent. The nose reveals intense, clean, pleasing, refined and elegant aromas that start with hints of apple, plum and pear followed by aromas of pineapple, vanilla, banana, hawthorn, citrus fruits, almond, peach and grapefruit. The mouth has good correspondence to the nose, a crisp attack and pleasing roundness, however balanced by alcohol, good body, intense flavors. The finish is persistent with flavors of apple, pineapple and banana. A well made wine. Collio Bianco Klin ages for 18 months in cask, 6 months in steel tanks and 12 months in bottle.
Food Match: Stuffed pasta, Roasted fish, Roasted white meat, Mushroom soups



Selezione del Fondatore 2002, Castello delle Regine (Umbria, Italy)
Selezione del Fondatore 2002
Castello delle Regine (Umbria, Italy)
Grapes: Sangiovese Grosso
Price: € 23.00 Score:
Selezione del Fondatore shows an intense ruby red color and nuances of garnet red, little transparency. The nose reveals intense, clean, pleasing and refined aromas that start with hints of plum, black cherry and blueberry followed by aromas of dried violet, vanilla, tobacco, coffee, chocolate, mace and eucalyptus. The mouth has good correspondence to the nose, good body, intense flavors, pleasing roundness. The finish is persistent with flavors of plum, black cherry and blueberry. Selezione del Fondatore ages for 14 months in barrique followed by at least 36 months of aging in bottle.
Food Match: Broiled meat and barbecue, Roasted meat, Braised and stewed meat, Hard cheese



Merlot 2004, Castello delle Regine (Umbria, Italy)
Merlot 2004
Castello delle Regine (Umbria, Italy)
Grapes: Merlot
Price: € 32.00 Score:
This Merlot shows an intense ruby red color and nuances of ruby red, little transparency. The nose reveals intense, clean, pleasing, refined and elegant aromas which start with hints of black currant, black cherry and plum followed by aromas of violet, blueberry, vanilla, tobacco, chocolate, cinchona, coffee, mace and eucalyptus. The mouth has excellent correspondence to the nose, a tannic attack and pleasing roundness, however balanced by alcohol, full body, intense flavors, agreeable. The finish is very persistent with long flavors of black currant, plum and black cherry. A well made wine. This Merlot ages for 12 months in barrique followed by 24 months of aging in bottle.
Food Match: Game, Stewed and braised meat, Roasted meat, Hard cheese



Montepulciano d'Abruzzo Colle Secco Rubino 2005, Cantina Tollo (Abruzzo, Italy)
Montepulciano d'Abruzzo Colle Secco Rubino 2005
Cantina Tollo (Abruzzo, Italy)
Grapes: Montepulciano
Price: € 4.50 Score: Wine that excels in its category  Good value wine
Montepulciano d'Abruzzo Colle Secco Rubino shows an intense ruby red color and nuances of ruby red, little transparency. The nose denotes intense, clean, pleasing and refined aromas which start with hints of plum, black cherry and violet followed by aromas of blueberry, vanilla, carob, mace and menthol. The mouth has good correspondence to the nose, a tannic attack and however balanced by alcohol, good body, intense flavors. The finish is persistent with flavors of black cherry, plum and blueberry. Montepulciano d'Abruzzo Colle Secco Rubino ages for 24 months in cask.
Food Match: Stuffed pasta with meat, Roasted meat, Stewed meat with mushrooms



Montepulciano d'Abruzzo Aldiano 2006, Cantina Tollo (Abruzzo, Italy)
Montepulciano d'Abruzzo Aldiano 2006
Cantina Tollo (Abruzzo, Italy)
Grapes: Montepulciano
Price: € 9.50 Score:
Montepulciano d'Abruzzo Aldiano shows a deep ruby red color and nuanced of ruby red, little transparency. The nose reveals intense, clean, pleasing and refined aromas that start with hints of black cherry, blueberry and violet followed by aromas of plum, blackberry, vanilla, cocoa, tobacco, pink pepper and menthol. The mouth has good correspondence to the nose, a tannic attack and however balanced by alcohol, good body, intense flavors. The finish is persistent with flavors of black cherry, plum and blueberry. Montepulciano d'Abruzzo Aldiano ages for 12 months in cask followed by 6 months of aging in bottle.
Food Match: Roasted meat, Stewed and braised meat with mushrooms, Hard cheese



Barbazzale Bianco 2007, Cottanera (Sicily, Italy)
Barbazzale Bianco 2007
Cottanera (Sicily, Italy)
Grapes: Inzolia
Price: € 8.00 Score:
Barbazzale Bianco shows an intense greenish yellow color and nuances of greenish yellow, very transparent. The nose denotes intense, clean and pleasing aromas which start with hints of pear, peach and pineapple followed by aromas of hawthorn, citrus fruits, almond and plum. The mouth has good correspondence to the nose, a crisp attack and however balanced by alcohol, good body, intense flavors. The finish is persistent with flavors of apple, peach and almond. Barbazzale Bianco ages for 6 months in steel tanks.
Food Match: Fried fish, Pasta and risotto with crustaceans and fish, Sauteed fish



Fatagione 2006, Cottanera (Sicily, Italy)
Fatagione 2006
Cottanera (Sicily, Italy)
Grapes: Nerello Mascalese (85%), Other Grapes (15%)
Price: € 16.00 Score:
Fatagione shows a brilliant ruby red color and nuances of ruby red, moderate transparency. The nose denotes intense, clean, pleasing and refined aromas which start with hints of cherry, plum and blackberry followed by aromas of blueberry, violet, vanilla, carob, tobacco and mace. The mouth has good correspondence to the nose, a tannic attack and however balanced by alcohol, good body, intense flavors. The finish is persistent with flavors of cherry, plum and blackberry. Fatagione ages for 12 months in cask.
Food Match: Stuffed pasta with meat, Stewed meat with mushrooms, Broiled meat and barbecue



Sagrantino di Montefalco 2005, Scacciadiavoli (Umbria, Italy)
Sagrantino di Montefalco 2005
Scacciadiavoli (Umbria, Italy)
Grapes: Sagrantino
Price: € 25.00 Score:
This Sagrantino di Montefalco shows an intense ruby red color and nuances of ruby red, little transparency. The nose denotes intense, clean, pleasing and refined aromas which start with hints of black cherry, plum and blackberry followed by aromas of violet, blueberry, vanilla, tobacco, pink pepper, cocoa and eucalyptus. The mouth has good correspondence to the nose, a tannic attack and however balanced by alcohol, full body, intense flavors. The finish is persistent with flavors of black cherry, blackberry and plum. This Sagrantino di Montefalco ages for 15 months in barrique followed by at least 9 months of aging in bottle.
Food Match: Game, Roasted meat, Braised and stewed meat, Hard cheese



Colli Orientali del Friuli Bianco Canto 2007, Cantarutti Alfieri (Friuli Venezia Giulia, Italy)
Colli Orientali del Friuli Bianco Canto 2007
Cantarutti Alfieri (Friuli Venezia Giulia, Italy)
Grapes: Tocai Friulano (50%), Pinot Blanc (25%), Sauvignon Blanc (25%)
Price: € 7.20 Score:   Good value wine
Colli Orientali del Friuli Bianco Canto shows an intense golden yellow color and nuances of straw yellow, very transparent. The nose denotes intense, clean, pleasing and refined aromas which start with hints of apple, pear and peach followed by aromas of pineapple, citrus fruits, medlar, broom, almond, litchi and plum. The mouth has good correspondence to the nose, a crisp attack and pleasing roundness, however balanced by alcohol, good body, intense flavors. The finish is persistent with flavors of apple, peach and almond. Colli Orientali del Friuli Bianco Canto ages in steel tanks.
Food Match: Stuffed pasta, Sauteed white meat, Stewed fish, Mushroom soups



Colli Orientali del Friuli Rosso Poema 2001, Cantarutti Alfieri (Friuli Venezia Giulia, Italy)
Colli Orientali del Friuli Rosso Poema 2001
Cantarutti Alfieri (Friuli Venezia Giulia, Italy)
Grapes: Merlot (70%), Cabernet Sauvignon (20%), Cabernet Franc (10%)
Price: € 11.40 Score:
Colli Orientali del Friuli Rosso Poema shows an intense ruby red color and nuances of garnet red, little transparency. The nose reveals intense, clean, pleasing and refined aromas that start with hints of black cherry, black currant and plum followed by aromas of violet, vanilla, chocolate, tobacco, cinnamon, clover, leather and menthol. The mouth has good correspondence to the nose, a tannic attack and however balanced by alcohol, good body, intense flavors, pleasing roundness. The finish is persistent with flavors of plum, black currant and black cherry. Colli Orientali del Friuli Rosso Poema ages for 18 months in barrique.
Food Match: Roasted meat, Braised and stewed meat, Hard cheese



Petit Verdot 2007, La Rasenna (Latium, Italy)
Petit Verdot 2007
La Rasenna (Latium, Italy)
Grapes: Petit Verdot
Price: € 8.00 Score: Wine that excels in its category
This wine shows an intense ruby red color and nuances of ruby red, little transparency. The nose denotes intense, clean, pleasing and refined aromas which start with hints of black cherry, plum and black currant followed by aromas of blackberry, violet, blueberry, tobacco and carob. The mouth has good correspondence to the nose, a tannic attack and however balanced by alcohol, good body, intense flavors. The finish is persistent with flavors of plum, black cherry and black currant. A small part of this Petit Verdot ages in cask.
Food Match: Broiled meat and barbecue, Stewed meat with mushrooms, Hard cheese






 Editorial  Share this article     Summary of Wine Tasting column Events 
  Wine Tasting Issue 70, January 2009   
Comparing Rosso Conero RiservaComparing Rosso Conero Riserva Wines of the MonthWines of the Month  Contents 
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