Giacomo Bologna!

The first time I attended Vinitaly in Verona, I was lucky enough to be introduced to Giacomo Bologna. He had become famous for re-inventing Barbera. With a deep love of the region and it’s varietals he introduced the use of French Barriques in aging Barbera, which was unheard of until then. Meeting Giacomo Bologna and tasting his wines changed my life as well. His wines were the beginning of my love affair with Italian wines. Not only did he change my mind about Barbera, but he poured me my first taste of his Vigna Senza Nome Moscato d’Asti which was one of the most magical wines I had ever tasted.

These days, the business is still run by his family and I’m still lucky enough to taste the “Braida” line when his son in law is in town promoting their wines.Yesterday I tasted:

Il Fiore 2013. You may have tried this if you’ve been to BiBO this past summer. It’s a blend of Chardonnay and Nascetta (a varietal only grown in Piemonte with only 40 hectares still planted there). The color is sparkling clear straw. It offers sunny notes of peach, tangerine, creamed corn and wet clay. There’s a splashy fresh attack of bright citrus acidity with hints of white jasmine and alfalfa on a bed of fresh, ripe nectarine. A gorgeous dry finish that makes the mouth water as it lingers and evolves. Love it. +702968 (6 packs) $$

Il Baciale Monferatto Rosso 2012. This is a real favorite on the Culina wine list as it’s a great match with so many different dishes! It’s a blend of Barbera, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. It has a velvet, ruby hue. Sour cherry and dark chocolate (like mon cheri) on the nose.  The chocolate persists on the palate with an undertone of earth and black plum. Its a chewy, tannic attack, it opens big and evolves into the chocolate/red berry profile of the nose. It’s so deep and complex, it compels taste after fabulous taste. It just begs for a wide variety of foods… would be a great match for mushroom and game birds. Delicious. +702970 (6 packs) $$

Bricco dell Uccellone 2009 Barbera. This is the Barbera that turned my head back in the late 80’s! Deep velvet ruby hue. Caramel and bitter cherry on the nose with tobacco and mocha notes and hints of exotic spice and dried fruits. Intensely layered attack of dark fruit and spice. There’s just SO much going on on the palate. The balance of fruit, tannin and acidity is perfect. It’s enough to make your eyes roll back in your head. The aftertaste is bittersweet and compelling which is great because the finish is unending. Love, love, love. magic! +702972 (6 packs) $$$

Vigna Senza Nome Moscato d’Asti (G) 2013 5%alc  This is the one!! Gorgeous package. Clear, sunny gold with fine perlage. Aromas of fresh rose petals and sunshine. Notes of chalky soil and apricot. Delicious, splashy, bright acidity like biting into a fresh peach. Beautiful mouth-feel with a slushy, tasty finish. It’s a summers’ day in a glass. Still crazy about this wine. Love it!+713117 $


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