Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Big Rustic Reds; Still Relevant in June Bisceglia Aglianico del Vulture

Yeah I know it's hot and I've mentioned how much I love rosés - but big rustic reds are always welcome. Let's face it, once it hits 90 degrees and you've got the AC on, who cares if the vino is cold or not. This wine will work just fine with any kind of grilled meat. Aglianico is probably the most important grape of southern Italy, especially in Campania where it makes the very long lived Taurasi. But entry level aglianicos are also tasty, including the bottle featured here. The producer Bisceglia is an estate located on the slopes of the extinct volcano, Vulture,  just south of Campania in the Basilicata. This bottling, called "Terra di Vulcano", is the '07 and it cost me $11.99. Rustic is an apt description here and it sometimes turns people off but wines like this give you all the wild splendor of a special place. The Bisceglia aglianico has big brooding aromas of dark plummy fruit, tar and the stoniness that is typical of wines grown in volcanic soil. You also get a touch of alcoholic heat that isn't so prominent that it will turn you off. In the mouth it's very big with dark fruit flavors and a bit of chocolate. It's also got structure and is a bit tannic (the astringency some refer to as "dry") but not overly so. That rusticity is part of the charm. It finishes long with a touch of minerality. Serve it with boldly flavored foods or grilled steaks. Imported by one of the best - Leonardo Locasio. Cheers!

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