|Italian Wine Merchant, NYC|
The retailer that started me on the road
to Italian wine.
When I first started my journey into Italian wine, it was a mixture of reading and knowledgeable sales people who helped me make my buying decisions. I still look back on those days with fondness, as I was trying so hard to taste everything and to understand all the differences from region to region and within all the Italian wine laws and regulations. It was dizzying, but magically so, in that each day held a new surprise and potentially a new wine that would peak my interests enough to dig deeper. Some wines stood out immediately and became the Italian foundation of my wine cellar, while others were nothing more than interesting enough to make note of or dedicate a brief time to study. For the most part, I succeeded, but I will admit that I made some hasty decisions.
This last February, while attending "The Italian Wine Masters" tasting in NYC, my eyes were opened to what Vino Nobile could be. A large part of this was from tasting back vintages of 1999 and 2001. These wines were majestic, pure, elegant, spicy, earthy and exactly what I wanted from a wine that is primarily Sangiovese at the age of ten or more years. However, another producer also stuck out to me, both because of the quality in the glass and the passion of the owner: Crociani
|Prugnolo Gentile |
So the next time your tastes turn to Tuscany, look for a Vino Nobile di Montepulciano; it’s not just a pretty name or a gimmick. And if you can find Crociani, I think you’ll agree that they are well worth the price of entry, but give that Riserva a little time to blossom.
On to the notes…
1999 Crociani Vino Nobile di Montepulciano – The nose showed dried red fruits with undergrowth, hints of green stems and pepper. On the palate, the fruits turned round and sweet, as this wine strutted a fine, mature structure with flavors of lush wild berries and spice. The finish was fresh and juicy. (90 points)
2003 Crociani Vin Santo di Montepulciano – The nose showed intense almond, cotton candy and coffee notes. On the palate, this wine was refined, showing roasted nuts, orange peel and toffee but with less sweetness than I’ve come to expect from Vin Santo. Ultimately, this was a pleasure to drink as it showed remarkable balance and refinement. (92 points)
Visit the Crociani Website.
Find the wines of Crociani on Wine-Searcher!