bestoflondonlife

a quirky look at London Life

THE BEST ITALIAN WINES FOR 2018

The swish Meridien hotel in London’s Piccadilly saw the launch of Signore Daniele Cernilli’s 2018 “ultimate” guide to Italian wine and wineries. What makes this wonderful compendium different? It is not – in the words of Signore Cernelli himself, (aka Doctor Wine) “encyclopedic” – rather it is “essential” in that a “rigorous selection process” has been in place. I would describe it as panoramic since it is “essentially” meticulously country wide and of course includes wines from Sicily and Sardinia. In all, the guide evaluates over 1,000 wineries and over 3,000 labels; over 500 of these fall inside the 15 euros bracket – there are of course expensive wines too! The wineries and their terroirs are described in some detail and the wines themselves conveniently graded along the lines of
A Inexpensive
B Reasonable
C Expensive
D Luxury
E Priceless
The good wine doctor’s guide has become essential pre-prandial reading.

The tasting in the Meridien Hotel suite encompassed many of the wines in Signore Cernilli’s guide and were set out on their winery tables: I started with a delightful mainly chardonnay blend called BEYOND THE CLOUDS from Elena Walch; a little short of heavenly perhaps, given its 2015 vintage.
PRICE B Imported by Bancroft Wines.

Then much joy from a decent 2015 Poggio al Lupo Morellino di Scansano from Tenuto Sette Ponte.
PRICE B Imported by Champagne and Chateau Boutinot.

Excellent wine too from Decugnana dei Barbi , my chosen one- the 2015 Il Rosso.
PRICE B Imported by Alivini.

Two tables then of island wines which interested me greatly; one from Sicily and the other from Sardinia; of the wines on display I very much preferred the Sardinian exhibits and especially the 2006 Alghero Anghelu Ruju Riserva, a really dark and lustrous red with wonderful herbs and spices and even a touch of liquorice. Ideal – I was told- with local wild boar.
PRICE B Imported by Matthew Clark/Alvini

The Tuscan wines on the Vignamaggio table were beautifully presented by a representative of the winery; I tasted two terrific Chianti Classico and a wonderful 2011 Cabernet Franc. The Cabernet Franc was indeed a sleek wine which I will long remember for its sheer stand-out class and quality.
PRICE C Imported by

Corney and Barrow

To finish off I was privileged to taste the Zyme 2006 Amarone della Valpolicella La Mattonara Riserva. An experience never to be forgotten!
PRICE E

Shaun Traynor

@shauntraynor69 on Twitter

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