The Tasting Panel magazine

October 2014

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Page 127 of 132

october 2014  /  the tasting panel  /  127 For information on SM Wine Group's portfolios, visit www. or write The Sassoregale Sangiovese, Maremma Toscana IGT is aged for six months in French barriques and gets its approachability, rich stone fruit-forward overtones and subtle hints of rich dark cherry from the mild climate, which allows natural grape sugars to concen- trate. SM Wine Group describes it as one of the most popular wines in the portfolio, standing as a winning alternative to a Chianti Classico. While Kettmeir's reputation as a pioneer of white sparkling winemaking in Alto Adige is solid, SM Wine Group is now bringing in a range of still white wines that are specifically targeted to year-round food pairing. During the summer months, their aromatic notes, rich fruit-forward flavors and crisp finishes complement lighter fare; their surprising depth of body enhances heartier foods associated with fall and winter. The newly released Kettmeir Pinot Grigio (a 91 point finalist at the Ultimate Beverage Challenge 2014) has a bright golden hue with aromas of pear, apple, floral and citrus that flows into a dry-on-entry palate and then opens up into a wine substantial structure and lingering savory undertones. The Kettmeir Müller Thurgau (89 points, Ultimate Beverage Challenge 2014) glows with its straw-yellow color, fresh nose and hints of nutmeg and white peach. The Kettmeir Pinot Bianco (87 points, Ultimate Beverage Challenge 2014) is distinguished by soft green high- lights, floral notes of wisteria and a fruity green apple sensibility and delicate mineral overtones. All three wines carry the Alto Adige DOC. Welcome Discoveries from the Heart of Tuscany In Italy's western reaches, Andrea Daldin, vintner for Lamole di Lamole and Sassoregale, looks forward to giving American wine drinkers and sommeliers a more expansive perspective of Tuscan wine beyond big Chiantis and Super Tuscans. Lamole is known for full-bodied wines that work equally well with hearty wintertime Tuscan meals and breezy fall get-togeth- ers. The 348-acre Lamole di Lamole property, located midway between Florence and Siena at an altitude ranging from 1,180 to 1,640 feet, literally towers above other estates in the area. Along with sandstone, marl and schist soils, the estate is known for its clonal selection program, which has identified two site-specific clones of Lamole Sangiovese that give several top wines their distinctive character. Lamole di Lamole Blue Label Chianti Classico 2009 (a 92 point finalist at the Ultimate Beverage Challenge and recipient of the Due Bicchieri award for its 2010 vintage) is a blend of 80% Sangiovese, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Merlot—a modern expression of Chianti Classico with a balanced acidity that makes it a harmonious partner with a variety of foods. The medium- bodied wine boasts notes of dark cherries and rich soil achieved through 12 months of aging. The grapes making up the Lamole di Lamole Chianti Classico Riserva Vigneto di Campolungo DOCG hail from a single "grand cru" vineyard with older vines and its own microclimate, resulting in rich red fruit flavors and herbaceous floral notes. The Lamole di Lamole Chianti Classico Riserva Gran Selezione (a 90% Sangiovese, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon blend that won the prestigious Gambero Rosso Tre Bicchieri award for its 2008 and 2009 vintages and was awarded 94 points by James Suckling) represents the future of the winery and the DOCG. Gran Selezione is a new top-tier classification created in 2013 by the Chianti Consorzio, taking the qualities of the Chianti Classico to the next level. Tenuta Sassoregale ("Regal Stone") is a true pioneer in Tuscany's new wine frontier, down to a growing environment that visually evokes the American West while still retaining a distinctively Italian and Mediterranean character. Juniper, myrtle and heather growing among cork oaks, cypresses and pines impact the flavor, as do high planting densities, cordon spur– trained vines, low environmental impact vineyard management and meticulous cellar operations.

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