Sunday, January 17, 2010

Valpanera Refosco dal Peduncolo Rosso 2007


This Italian red wine is produced from a single variety of grape, the Refosco dal Peduncolo Rosso, named for the red stem on which it grows.  This grape dates back to around the first century, and there aren't too many things about which you can say that.  If you've never heard of the grape before - and many casual wine drinkers in America haven't - understand that they've been working with it in Italy for a long time, so they really know what they are doing.

The wine is a very deep red color, so deep I can barely see light through it.  It is aged anywhere from eight to twelve months - in stainless steel.  A red wine aged in steel may surprise you, but it's not uncommon to find it done that way in Italy.  The fruit really comes through in the nose - quite dark yet inviting.  I smell blackberries and currants.

It sits medium full in the mouth and has a very clean taste due to the lack of wood.  On the palate it's equally fruity with a deliciously dark flavor.  Smokey doesn't quite describe it, but it's close.  Earthy, almost musty might be a little closer to the truth.

Let it sit awhile before enjoying it and you'll be rewarded with a smooth, clean-tasting red.  Denise used it in a crock pot melange of potatoes and carrots and it really imparted a wonderful flavor.  Plus, when she used the wine to cook the dish it made the two a perfect match.  It's really a delightful find. 

Variety: 100% Refosco dal Peduncolo Rosso 
Appelation: Italy > Friuli-Venezia Giulia > Friuli Aquileia 
Vintage: 2007 
Alcohol Level: 12.5% abv 
Price: $23 
Acquisition disclaimer: Purchased by author