The 2013 Vernaccia di San Gimignano Anteprina

A Tower in San Gimignano

A Tower in San Gimignano

The Consorzio della Vernaccia di San Gimignano has by now established a successful formula for its Anteprima, presenting on the one hand a comparison between Vernaccia and another white wine, and on the other the latest releases. This year the looked east, to Slovenia and Rebula, whose Friulian analog would be Ribolla. It’s an interesting grape which is quite neutral on the nose but displays considerable zesty minerality on the palate and works very well with foods. It’s also a wine that is generally drunk young, and therefore the wines we tasted in the comparison between Rebula and Vernaccia were young, from 2011 through (in the case of two Vernaccias) 2009.

Comparison between Slovenian Rebula and Vernaccia

Wines from the Goriska Brda Appellation, which is just east of Gorizia.

Blazic Goriska Brda Rebula 2011
They are astride the Slovenian boarder, and have their press is in Italy, whereas their cellars are in Slovenia. Brassy gold with golden reflections paling to white at the rim. The bouquet is fairly intense, with butterscotch – from grape, not wood — and honeysuckle mingled with some hints of shellac and also white pears. On the palate it’s bright, with lively savory minerality supported by bright peppery spice and by fairly deft minerality that flows into a fairly long mineral finish with peppery spicy undertones. It’s fairly neutral on the nose, and zesty n the palate, a wine that will work quite well with foods without hogging the limelight. Pleasant and will go quickly.
2 stars

Kristancic Goriska Brda Rebula 2011
Brassy white with brilliant brassy reflections and white rim. The bouquet is mineral, with gunflint and some flinty accents supported by flinty acidity. Fresh. On the palate it’s quite mineral, with fresh lemony fruit supported by flinty acidity and tannins from grapes that flow into a fairly long flinty lemony finish. Fresh, and quite bracing; it will drink well with a wide variety of summer foods; it also has the wherewithal to age nicely for 3-4 years. If you like the style, which is quite fresh and rather brash, you will enjoy it considerably.
2 stars

Cantina Goriska Brda Quercus Goriska Brda Rebula 2011
Pale brassy white with brilliant brassy reflections and white rim. The bouquet is muted, though swishing brings up some heather and sight vegetal accents mingled with some dried artichoke notes. On the palate it’s bright, with lively vegetal laced mineral acidity supported by peppery accents and some minerality, and flows into a fresh bright zesty finish; it’s bright and lively, and quite approachable, and will drink quite well with summer foods, including fried meats or fish. Nice acidity and quite lively.
2 stars

Jakoncic Goriska Brda Rebula 2011
Brassy yellow with brilliant brassy reflections and white rim. The bouquet is mineral, with unusual vegetal and spicy notes that  bring Szechuan preserved vegetable to mind, supported by the vegetables salty accents too. On the palate it’s ample and quite mineral, with quite a bit of gunflint supported by flinty bitter tannins and mineral acidity that flow into a mineral finish with some vegetal accents, and a strong savory underpinning. Quite approachable in a rather direct key, and will be versatile at table, accompanying what it’s served with without demanding center stage.
2 stars

Valter Sirk Goriska Brda Rebula 2011
Brilliant brassy yellow with brassy reflections and pale greenish highlights, paling to a white rim. The bouquet is intense, with bitter vegetal notes mingled with some animal notes – horse hair – and some airy minerality. It’s more charged than the others, and a bit more vegetal. On the palate it’s quite mineral, with bitter gunflint supported by peppery spice and flinty mineral tannins that flow into a fairly long bitter flinty finish with considerable savory accents. It’s approachable, in a very mineral key, and will be quite refreshing in the summer months. It grew upon me.
2 stars

Vernaccia

Frescos in San Gimignano's Town Hall

Frescos in San Gimignano’s Town Hall

Poderi del Paradiso Biscondola Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2011
Brilliant brassy gold with golden reflections and white rim. The bouquet is fairly intense, with honeysuckle and greenish accents supported by spice and gunflint, with some flinty mineral acidity. On the palate it’s ample, with greenish minerality supported by gunflint and by some butterscotch, while there is also peppery spice and it flows into a fairly bright butterscotch-laced gunflint finish. It’s fairly rich, but needs a little more time to come together; at present the oak and fruit are walking side by side but haven’t really come together.
1 star

Fontaleoni Vigna Casanuova Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2010
Brassy white with brilliant brassy reflections and white rim. The bouquet is moderately intense with some cut flowers and slight petroleum mingled with slight gunflint and hints of shellac. On the palate it’s fairly mineral, with some citric acidity and slight lemony fruit supported by powerful mineral accents and considerable savory notes that flow into a decidedly mineral, vegetal finish with a sour lemon underpinning. Quite pleasant, and will work very well with grilled or roasted fish, while there is also sufficient acidity for (elegant) fried dishes in the summer.
88-90

Colombaio di Santa Chiara Campo della Pieve Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2010
Brassy gold with brassy reflections and white rim. The bouquet is intense, with butterscotch and some vegetal notes mingled with honeysuckle and underlying gunflint minerality that brings struck granite to mind, and gains in intensity with swishing. On the palate it’s mineral, with lemony fruit laced with butterscotch and supported by sour lemon – almost citron peel – acidity and by flinty mineral tannins that flow into a sour lemon and flinty finish. It’s rather brash, and if you like the style, which is quite mineral, you will enjoy it.
2 stars

Il Palagione Ori Vernaccia di San Gimignano Riserva DOCG 2010
Pale brassy yellow with brilliant brassy reflections and white rim. The bouquet is muted, though swishing brings up slight butterscotch and slight vegetal notes, with some cut flowers as well. On the palate it’s mineral, with some butterscotch that is supported by gunflint, whose bitterness is balanced by the sweetness from the butterscotch, and it flows into a clean rather mineral finish. It’s fairly direct, revolving primarily around minerality, and if you like quite mineral wines you will enjoy it, though I’d have liked a touch more verve from acidity as well.
2 stars

Montenidoli Fiore Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2009
Brilliant brassy yellow with brassy reflections and greenish highlights, paling to a white rim. The bouquet is muted at first swish, and with more swishing opens to reveal delicate bitter almonds mingled with mineral accents and slight gunflint; it gives an impression of being hidden behind a screen, and needs another year at least to develop. On the palate it’s rich, and quite mineral, with powerful gunflint and flint supported by peppery spice and pleasant savory notes that lead into a clean fresh mineral finish. It’s quite elegant, and quite refreshing, and will go beautifully with all manner of foods now; it also has considerable aging potential, and if you have the necessary patience it will reward you.
90

Cesani Sanice Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2009
Gold with golden reflections that have some red apricot accents, and white rim. The bouquet is fairly intense, with minerality and slight metallic accents, and fairly intense minerality, with slight savory notes, and as it opens, hints of tomato as well. On the palate it’s ample and smooth, with minerality and fairly intense butterscotch; there isn’t that much acidity, but rather minerality – no gunflint, but minerality – that does reveal some lemony notes as it flows into the finish, which is again fairly mineral. By comparison with some of the others it’s less aggressive, and displays more polish; if you like the style you will enjoy it, but you have to like the style.
2 stars.

An interesting comparison; I found greater consistency in the Slovenian wines than in the Vernaccia, which was somewhat more variable in terms of style. If one thinks about it, this makes sense, because the Slovenian producers were presenting introducing us to their Appellation, and therefore preseting wines that are representative of it, whereas the people who selected the Vernaccia samples were also interested in showing Vernaccia’s range.

And the vintage presentation?

The primary vintage this year was 2012, which was by all standards difficult – the heat arrived in a rush in early June, and it was extraordinarily dry thereafter – not a drop of rain in all of July, and just a little at the end of August, and those of us who live in Chianti became accustomed to discovering that fruit trees and shrubs had – despite watering – turned yellow over night. The situation was just as serious in the vineyards, but during the month of September it rained enough to largely right the situation, restoring a degree of balance and fruit to the grapes, which did have acidity because the combination of heat and dryness had greatly reduced the rate of ripening.

As is often the case in difficult vintages I found myself preferring the base wines, in which many of the winemakers were more accepting of what Nature provided. By comparison, many of the vineyard selections felt more forced. The Riserve? Oak continues to be a constant with many, and is frequently intense enough that it masks the varietal nuances of the Vernaccia grape. Some of these wines are good, in an oaky key, but as a colleague says, one opens Vernaccia to be spirited to San Gimignano, not to interact with a wine that could easily be from the new world.

because of time constraints I was unable to taste all the wines, but did taste a good number, selecting some at random and choosing others. They are in the order of the first wine tasted from each winery.
The wines, tasted February 18 2013

Agricoltori del Chianti Geografico 

Agricoltori del Chianti Geografico Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2012
Pale brassy white with brilliant brassy reflections. The bouquet is fresh, with lively floral accents, including some gooseberry, and also slight bitter almond. Fresh and quite young. On the palate it’s bright, with fairly lively mineral acidity and quite a bit of gunflint supported by white fruit and an abundance of sea salt that makes it quite refreshing. Pleasant in a fresh lively key and will work quite well a tutto pasto, with the meal.
2 stars

Cesani 

Cesani Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2012
Brassy gold with brassy reflections and white rim. The bouquet is muted, though swishing brings up some bitterness and hints of cut flowers. On the palate it’s tart, with strong bitter gunflint minerality supported by flinty acidity and tannins that have a flinty burr, and flow into a fairly long bitter finish. It’s still coming together, in a somewhat more austere key,a nd will be pleasant if you like mineral wines. If you prefer fruit you will like it less.
2 stars

Cesani Sanice Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2010
Brassy yellow with brilliant brassy reflections and white rim. The bouquet is fairly intense and rater bitter, with gunflint and bitter almonds mingled with some airy flinty spice. On the palate it’s fairly bright, with bitter gunflint minerality supported by mineral acidity and flinty white grape tannins that flow into a fairly long bitter finish with underlying sea salt that stimulates the palate. Pleasant in a rather austere key, and if you like the style you will enjoy it.
2 stars

Fattoria Abbazia di Monteoliveto 

Fattoria Abbazia di Monteoliveto Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2012
Barrel sample, and unfiltered, which makes it a slightly cloudy brassy white. The nose is, as one might expect, leesy, with hints of banana and some spice mingled with slight sweetness. Not much acidity. On the palate it’s ample and rather soft, with fairly bright lemony fruit supported by bitter gunflint minerality that flows into a fairly bitter finish with underlying sour lemon acidity.

Fattoria Abbazia di Monteoliveto La Gentilesca Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2012
Barrel sample; pale cloudy brassy green. The bouquet is intense, and greenish, with some mentholated accents and some camphor as well. On the palate it’s bright, with lively mineral laced greenish flinty accents and a fair amount of bitter gunflint that flow into a greenish flinty finish with a greenish tannic burr. Promising, and will I think do interesting things.

Il Lebbio 

Il Lebbio Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2012
Brassy yellow with brilliant brassy reflections and white rim. The bouquet is muted with hints of reduction, and this is because it is still recovering from bottling; as it airs some floral accents and lemony notes emerge. On the palate it’s moderately rich, with lemony fruit supported by bitter gunflint minerality and some flinty tannins that bring to mind struck granite, and flow into a fairly bitter finish. It’s fairly direct, and will drink well with foods, including fried fish or meats in the summer months.
1 star

Il Lebbio Tropie Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2012
Brassy gold with some greenish highlights. The bouquet is moderately intense, with honeysuckle and some butterscotch supported by a certain airiness. On the palate it’s ample, with minerality and savory notes supported by slight peppery spice, while there is moderate lemony fruit. I’d have liked more, because it surrenders direction to the minerality.
1 star

Montenidoli

A Roof in San Gimignano

A Roof in San Gimignano

Montenidoli Vernaccia Tradizionale Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2010
Fairly deep brassy yellow with brilliant golden reflections and white rim. The bouquet is intense, with candied lemon rind mingled with honeysuckle and some millefiori honey, and delicate lemon blossom acidity. Quite a bit going on, and marches to a different tune with respect to most of the wines presented. On the palate it’s full, with rich lemony fruit supported by herbal accents, the heather of a cut field, and by powerful flinty mineral acidity that gains direction from flinty minerality and flows into a savory almost peppery flinty finish. Pleasant, in a rich powerful key, and will work quite well with flavorful foods, including fried fish or meats and vegetables on a hot summer day.  Worth seeking out.
90

Casale Falchini 

Casale Falchiini Vernaccia Vigna a Solatio Vernaccia di San Gimignano Riserva DOCG 2010
Deep yellowish gold with brilliant golden reflections. The bouquet is intense, with lemony heather supported by a fair amount of butterscotch and faint hints of shellac. Harmonious. On the palate it’s ample and quite smooth, with fairly bright lemony fruit supported by butterscotch and lemony acidity that flow into a fairly long warm citric finish with slight flinty undertones. Pleasant in a deft rather international key, and if you like the style you will enjoy it.
2 stars

Casale Falchini Vigna a Solatio Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2012
Brassy gold with brassy reflections and white rim. The bouquet is moderately intense with some mineral notes mingled with slight cut flower pungency and underlying vegetal and honeysuckle accents. On the palate it’s bitter, with gunflint minerality supported by flinty acidity and some savory accents that flow into a fairly bitter mineral finish. I’d have liked a bit more fruit, which would have fleshed it out; it instead revolves around minerality, and if you like the style you will enjoy it, but you have to like the style
2 stars

Casale Falchini Ab Vinea Doni Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2011
Brassy gold with golden reflections and white rim. The bouquet is fairly intense,with quite a bit of butterscotch supported by sweetness and some honey, and also some bitter almonds that increase in intensity with swishing. On the palate it’s ample and smooth, with considerable butterscotch supported by peppery spice and mineral acidity that flow into a fairly long butterscotch laced finish. It’s heavily oaked and while it has digested the oak well, you have to like the style, or it won’t grab you.
1 star

Panizzi 

Panizzi Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2012
Brassy white with brassy reflections and white rim. The bouquet is muted, though swishing brings up some cut flowers and slight bitter accents, with slight gunflint that emerges as it opens. Still coming together and recovering from bottling. On the palate it’s ample, with moderately rich sour lemon fruit supported by gunflint minerality and some flinty accents, with underlying savory notes as well. It’s not as concentrated as I might have expected, but rather comes across as slightly dilute.
1 star

Panizzi Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG Riserva 2009
Pale brassy white with brilliant golden brassy reflections and white rim. The bouquet is intense, with quite a bit of almost cedary butterscotch supporting vegetal accents; the oak is quite evident, but doesn’t impinge. On the palate it’s ample and fairly smooth, with abundant butterscotch laced lemony fruit supported by lemony acidity and quite a bit of gunflint, which flows into a flinty butterscotch-laced citric finish. There’s quite a bit of oak, but well managed, and if you like the style you will enjoy it. You do have to like the style, however.
2 stars

Il Palagione 

Il Palagione Hydra Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2012
Brassy yellow with brassy reflections and white rim. The bouquet is moderately intense and fairly sweet, with jammy apricot supported by some vegetal accents and slight gunflint. Still coming together. On the palate it’s fairly rich, with bitter gunflint laced lemony fruit supported by lemony acidity and flinty minerality that brings struck granite to mind, and flows into a fairly long bitter flinty finish with some sour lemon underpinning. Pleasant, more on the palate than the nose now, and it needs a few months to come together, at which point it will work quite well with foods.
2 stars

Pietrafitta 

Pietrafitta Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2012
Barrel sample; it’s slightly cloudy pale brassy gold. The bouquet is slightly reduced, which can happen with a barrel sample, and displays some lemony notes with underlying gunflint bitterness. On the palate it’s ample and rather bitter, with bitter minerality supported by some citric notes, and some lemony fruit, while there are flinty tannins that flow into a savory flinty finish. It’s fairly direct, and up front, and will drink well with foods, without hogging the limelight.

Pietrafitta Borghetto Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2012
Barrel sample; it’s pale brassy yellow with a slight hint of cloudiness to it. The bouquet is fairly intense, with some leesy notes mingled with butterscotch and some greenish accents. On the palate it’s fairly bitter, with moderately intense greenish gunflint minerality supported by mineral more than citric acidity, and by flinty tannins that flow into a fairly bitter finish. It’s going to be fairly soft, I think, and in a fairly bitter key.

Rubicini 

Rubicini Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2012
Brassy yellow with brilliant brassy reflections. The bouquet is fairly intense, and rather leesy, with some gunflint mingled in and minerality, but not much fruit. On the palate it’s flinty, with considerable minerality and some mineral acidity, and flows into a bitter mineral finish with pronounced savory accents that continue at length, revealing hints of sour lemon too. I’d have liked a little more depth to the minerality and greater fruit on the attack. A little more oomph.
1 star

Rubicini Etherea Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2011
Lively brassy gold with greenish highlights and white rim. The bouquet is intense, with bitter gunflint minerality laced with some butterscotch and considerable bitter almonds laced with hardwood ash. Charged. On the palate it’s ample and smooth, with minerality and some lemony fruit supported by polished flint tannins that have butterscotch underpinning, and flow into a butterscotch  laced finish. Well polished on the palate, and if you like the style you will enjoy it, though you have to like the style. Someone who wants more of the flintiness that often comes with Vernaccia will like it less.
2 stars

Tenute Guicciardini Strozzi  

Tenute Guicciardini Strozzi Cusona 1933 Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2012
Brilliant brassy yellow with bright brassy reflections and white rim. The bouquet is moderately intense, with hints of hops of the sort used in making beer, and also some savory accents; the overall effect is fairly floral. On the palate it’s ample, and again rather hoppy, with bright hop laced acidity and some underlying minerality that flows into a fairly long bright finish. It is distinct with respect to most of the other wines poured, but has lively acidity and a certain savoriness, and will work well with summer foods, including things such as fried fish.
2 stars

Tenute Guicciardini Strozzi Vernaccia Titolato Strozzi Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2012
Brassy white with brassy reflections and white rim. The bouquet is fairly intense, with a mixture of gunflint and gooseberry. A bit atypical for Vernaccia. On the palate it’s ample and rather bitter, with moderately intense sour lemon fruit supported by decidedly greenish minerality laced with dried artichokes, and by flinty tannins that flow into a bitter rather flinty finish that continues at fair length, becoming bitter with time. It’s not settled, but not really tight either, and I found myself wanting a little more verve.
1 star

Poggio Alloro 

Poggio Alloro Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2012
Brassy gold with brilliant brassy reflections and white rim. The bouquet is moderately intense, with moderate lemony fruit and acidity supported by some greenish vegetal accents and some gunflint bitterness. On the palate it’s fairly mineral, with greenish gunflint supported by flinty acidity and by flinty tannins that flwo into a fairly long bitter finish. A decidedly mineral wine that will work well with fish or white meats, and that has the capacity to age well for 3-5 years.
1 star

Poggio Alloro Selezione Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2012
Barrel sample; brassy yellow with brilliant brassy gold reflections and white rim. The bouquet is muted, though some butterscotch and slight honeysuckle emerge, supported by hints of smoke and struck granite. On the palate it’s ample and quite smooth, with fairly intense gunflint minerality supported by butterscotch that’s not sweet, and by flinty mineral acidity supported by underlying bitterness. Quite smooth, with acidity polished by oak, and if you like the style you will enjoy it, but you have to like the style. If you prefer wines with more verve it will work less well for you.

Signano 

Signano Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2012
Fairly brilliant brassy gold with golden reflections and hints of pink in the rim. The bouquet is muted, though swishing brings up some greenish vegetal accents and hints of white glue and chalk dust. On the palate it’s ample, and rather peppery, with moderate rather bitter fruit supported by greenish notes that bring dried artichokes to mind, and underlying bitterness that flows into a fairly bitter finish. It’s a bit more disjointed than I might have liked – the peppery spice, in particular, distracts — with the various elements going in various directions, and I don’t know if they will come together well.
1 star

Signano Poggiarelli Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2012
Barrel sample; brassy gold with brilliant brassy reflections and white rim. The bouquet is fairly intense, with butterscotch and some honeysuckle; it’s pleasant for a barrel sample. On the palate it’s fairly bright, with lively sour lemon fruit supported by greenish vegetal accents and fairly intense gunflint bitterness that flows into a fairly long flinty greenish vegetal finish.

Signano Vernaccia di San Gimignano Riserva DOCG 2011
Barrel sample; brilliant brassy gold with brassy reflections and white rim. The bouquet is powerful, and decidedly oaky, with some petroleum accents as well, but not much in the way of Vernaccia coming though. The palate reflects the nose, with a tremendous lot of oak that covers everything, flowing into a bitter oaky finish. Too much, and while it’s true that some oak will fold in, this much won’t, I think.

Tenuta Le Calcinaie 

Pouring Vernaccia di San Gimignano

Pouring Vernaccia di San Gimignano

Tenuta Le Calcinaie Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2012
Brassy gold with brassy reflections and hints of brass in the rim as well. The bouquet is fairly intense, with vegetal notes mingled with greenish spice and a certain coolness that brings to mind dappled shade. Almost brooding. On the palate it’s ample, with moderately intense vegetal laced bitterness and some gunflint, though not that much, and some minerality; though it’s not really settled I found it lacking in verve and zest; peppery spice and minerality have to step in for acidity.
1 star

Cà del Vispo 

Cà del Vispo Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2012
Barrel sample; slightly cloudy brassy gold with apricot highlights. The bouquet is fairly intense,with greenish melon rind and spice supported by sweetness and some savory notes. On the palate it’s bitter, with greenish vegetal notes supported by sour mineral acidity and by peppery spice that flow into a rather bitter vegetal finish. It revolves more around bitterness than fruit, at least now.

Cappella Sant’Andrea 

Cappella Sant’Andrea Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2012
Barrel sample; the bouquet is muted, with some leesy aromas and slight hops. On the palate it’s ample, with moderate lemony fruit supported by gunflint bitterness, sour lemon acidity,a nd flinty tannins that flow into a greenish bitter finish. It’s a touch soft, but will I think develop nicely.

Cappella Sant’Andrea Rialto Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2012
Barrel sample; pale brassy gold with golden reflections. The bouquet is muted, though swishing brings up some leesy aromas and slight hints of banana which are the yeasts, and some butterscotch too. On the palate it’s ample, and rather bitter, with the bitterness deriving from oak more than grape. It’s quite oaky, and how much of the oak will fold in with time is not clear, at least to me.

La Mormoraia 

La Mormoraia Solo Rezet Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2012
This is a wine from Mattia Bazzaghi, one of San Gimignano’s most up-and-coming winemakers. A barrel sample; it’s pale slightly cloudy brassy white with greenish gold reflections. The bouquet is muted, though swishing brings up delicate vegetal accents and hints of bitter almonds. On the palate it’s deft, with lively vegetal laced lemony fruit supported by gunflint bitterness and flinty tannins that flow into a clean rather bitter flinty vegetal finish. Shows considerable promise and should be graceful when it’s ready, in a year or two.

La Mormoraia Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2012
Barrel sample; it’s cloudy brassy white with brassy greenish accents. The bouquet is fairly intense, and rather leesy, with greenish notes and some underlying bitterness as well. On the palate it’s fairly bitter, with some greenish accents and bitter almost flinty mineral acidity that flows into a fairly long bitter finish; it’s not as rich as the 18, but will display a pleasing grace in a more mineral key, I think.

La Mormoraia Vernaccia di San Gimignano Riserva DOCG 2010
Barrel sample; it’s pale brassy gold with brilliant golden reflections and white rim. The bouquet is fairly intense, and very much up in the air. On the palate it’s ample and rather bitter, with a fair amount of oak, much more than I expected from their vintage wines, which are defter than this is in its present stage of development.

San Donato 

San Donato Angelica Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2011
Brassy gold with some pinkish reflections and hints of pink in the rim. The bouquet is intense, and quite oaky, with a terrific load of butterscotch laced with gunflint and greenish accents. Vernaccia is covered up. On the palate it’s ample and would be soft if the oak weren’t as strong as it is, covering all, with a savory oaky veneer. It’s like sucking a barrel salt that was dipped in wine.
1 star

La Lastra 

La Lastra Vernaccia di San Gimignano Riserva DOCG 2011
Barrel sample; slightly cloudy brassy gold with some reddish apricot reflections. The bouquet is fairly rich, with some citrus fruit supported by greenish vegetal accents and some bitter almonds. On the palate it’s fairly rich, with lemony fruit supported by gunflint bitterness and some flinty tannins, while the acidity is more mineral than fruit driven, and it all flows into a fairly long bitter finish. Promising.

Cantine Guidi 

Cantine Guidi Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2012
Barrel sample; slightly pale brassy gold with brassy reflections. The bouquet is moderately intense with brambly vegetal accents mingled with heather and some leesy notes. On the palate it’s ample and peppery, with moderate fruit and some gunflint bitterness supported by flinty minerality; I’d have liked a little more verve to it.

Il Colombaio di Santa Chiara 

Il Colombaio di Santa Chiara Selva Bianca Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2012
Barrel sample; it’s cloudy gold with some greenish gold reflections. The bouquet is fairly intense, with animal notes, not quite cat pee but in that direction, mingled with citrus and some vegetal accents too, also some gunflint. On the palate it’s bright, wth lively sour lemon and gooseberry fruit supported by sour lemon acidity and some savory notes, and by flinty tannins that flow into a fairly long rather flinty mineral finish. Pleasant, in a brash lively key, though atypical for Vernaccia; it will work nicely with fried fish or meats with fried vegetables.

Il Colombaio di Santa Chiara Campo della Pieve Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2011
Barrel sample; brilliant brassy yellow with brassy reflections and white rim. The bouquet is fairly intense, and greenish, with some lemony gooseberry accents and acidity, and slight heathery brambles and sweetness as well. On the palate it’s bright, with lively sour lemon fruit supported by considerable gunflint bitterness and some flinty tannins that flow into a fairly long greenish finish with a flinty tannic burr that brings struck granite to mind It shows a certain potential, and may do interesting things.

San Qurico

San Quirico Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2012
Barrel sample; brassy yellow with brilliant brassy reflections and white rim. The bouquet is moderately intense, with leesy notes and some banana, which are the yeasts still in the wine. On the palate it’s bright, with bitter gunflint minerality supported by mineral acidity thBarrel sample; at flows into a fairly bright mineral finish. Promising, and will do interesting things, I think.

San Quirico Isabella Vernaccia di San Gimignano Riserva DOCG 2006
Barrel sample; it’s fairly deep gold with brilliant golden reflections and white rim. The bouquet is intense, and quite oaky, with a great lot of butterscotch and some honeysuckle, but not much that one would necessarily identify as Vernaccia; the oak overshadows it all. On the palate it’s just as oaky, with a mixture of butterscotch and sweetness, and oaky bitterness, while the acidity is lemony mineral, and it flows into a long bitter oaky finish. Too much oak, and while the wine isn’t dead it’s never going to display its varietal characteristics either.

Teruzzi & Puthod 

Teruzzi & Puthod T&P Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2012
Slightly greenish brassy white with brilliant brassy reflections. The bouquet is greenish, with some spice and slight passion fruit with some mentholated accents as well. On the palate it’s quite mineral, with greenish vegetal accents supported by gunflint minerality and flinty tannins that flow into a fairly long rather bitter flinty finish. Pleasant in a decidedly mineral key, and if you like the style you will enjoy it.
2 stars

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About Cosa Bolle in Pentola

Italy boasts an astonishing number of varietals, denominations, and wines, and tremendous changes are sweeping the land. New wines are being created, new DOCs are being introduced, and the existing denominations are overhauling their regulations both to reflect the practices adopted by their member wineries and to favor improvements in quality. Even the most staid and stolid region can flower seemingly overnight, emerging with exciting new wines and wineries that require rewriting the enological maps and rethinking one's positions. And, of course, recipes too, because cuisine and wine are closely intertwined and it's difficult to imagine one without the other.
This entry was posted in Italian Whites, Vernaccia di San Gimignano, Vintage Presentations and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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