Bardolino: Chiaretto Spumante, Chiaretto, and… Bardolino

The 2012 Bardolino Chiaretto

The 2012 Bardolino Chiaretto

It would seem obvious, but how one approaches a vintage presentation has a profound influence on how one sees the wine. And for the past few years, I have approached the Bardolino presentation in steps, starting with the Bardolino Chiaretto Spumante, then Bardolino Chiaretto, and finally Bardolino tout court, which is red. And I have published the notes in sets to keep them of manageable length.

Because of this, I have managed to miss seeing the forest through the trees, as it were. Over the past five years Bardolino has undergone significant changes, all for the better as I see things. Bardolino (the red wine) is, as wine lovers know, something of a lesser relative of Valpolicella, a lighter red made from the same varietals that go into the Valpolicella blend, and during the 90s and early 2000s, when there was much more emphasis on concentration and extraction than there is now, it ran into what one might call an identity crisis: consumers wanted – or so producers thought – bigger wines, and they attempted to meet this need by bulking up their Bardolino, and also adding more substantial varietals along the lines of the Cabernets. The result was less than satisfactory; the wines were bigger but lost the grace that Bardolino was traditionally known for, and also character, as the non-traditional varietals overshadowed the more delicate nuances that Corvina and especially Rondinella can reveal in the soils around Lake Garda.

Demand collapsed, and with it prices – in 2007 grapes for making Bardolino sold for 28 Eurocents/kilo, and it’s very hard to make a living from that. Something had to be done, and Angelo Peretti, President of the Consorzio, convinced the winemakers to take a radical step: Shift their attention from Red Bardolino to Bardolino Chiaretto, the region’s rosè, which has always been a popular spring/summer/cookout wine.

Rosès don’t require weight (quite the contrary), and therefore winemakers began to eliminate the foreign varietals, and also aim for less concentration and extraction from the traditional varietals, and it all clicked: In the space of five years production of Bardolino Chiaretto more than doubled, from 5 to 11 million bottles, and the wine began to make its way into markets that had hitherto been unthinkable, including France.

And the improvements have spilled over from the Rosès: Bardolino the red wine is returning to what it once was, shedding excess color and concentration, becoming defter, more elegant, and more agile, and while there are some holdouts that still continue to make the wines of a decade ago, they are by now a minority and decrease in number yearly.

In short, Bardolino has turned itself around, and things are looking up.

The Bardolino Chiaretto wines of the 2012 vintage, tasted in March 2013

The Bardolino Anteprima

The Bardolino Anteprima

Aldo Adami

Aldo Adami Bardolino Chiaretto 2012
Brilliant pink with slightly salmonate reflections and white rim. The bouquet is moderately intense, with strawberry fruit supported by some greenish accents and slight greenish acidity. On the palate it’s bright, with fairly sweet mineral laced berry fruit supported by berry fruit acidity and greenish peppery accents that have a sight greenish tannic underpinning, and flow into a savory greenish vegetal laced finish in which savory minerality completely overcomes the sweetness of the fruit. It’s fairly direct, but quite approachable and will work well with foods
2 stars

Aldegheri

Aldegheri Bardolino Chiaretto Tenuta Villa Cariola 2012

Pale salmon with brilliant reflections and white rim. The bouquet is a bit unusual, with sliced salami and some savory notes mingled with slight greenish accents. On the palate it’s mineral, with considerable savoriness and some greenish accents that flow into a fairly long savory finish with slight greenish tannins and some peppery notes that gradually fade. A mineral wine, and more interesting on the palate than the nose, which is likely suffering from excessive youth.
1 star

Fulvio Benazzoli

Fulvio Benazzoli Bardolino Chiaretto 2012
Brilliant pink with pink reflections and white rim. The bouquet is fairly sweet, with strawberry supported by some yellow peach and slight mentholated accents; it has a luscious feel to it. On the palate it’s again fairly sweet – for a dry wine – with strawberry raspberry fruit supported by some greenish acidity and by savory tannins and a fair amount of sea salt, which predominates in the finish, which is quite long. It’s up front and direct, and will drink nicely with foods.
1 star

Bergamini

Bergamini Bardolino Chiaretto Colline di Colà 2012
Brilliant rosy pink with pink reflections and white rim. The bouquet is still coming together; at present bitter greenish accents mingled with some berry fruit emerge but this is extreme youth. On the palate it’s savory, with bright sour forest berry fruit supported by fairly bright greenish acidity and by slight tannins that have a slight greenish burr, and flow into a fairly long savory finish. It’s approachable in a brash key, and will work quite well with foods, though it isn’t a wine to drink far from the table.
2 stars

Bertoldi

Bertoldi Bardolino Chiaretto Classico 2012
Brilliant pink with lively pink reflections and white rim. The bouquet is fairly green, with some pungent notes and some underbrush; with swishing peppery spice also emerges. On the palate it’s quite mineral, with considerable savory acidity and some underlying bitterness, while the tannins are slight and have a greenish burr, flowing into a rather bitter savory finish. It revolves more around minerality than fruit, and while it’s not a wine to drink by the glass on its own will work nicely with foods.
2 stars

Bigagnoli

Bigagnoli Bardolino Chiaretto Classico 2012
Lively rose petal pink with brilliant reflections and white rim. The bouquet is muted; swishing brings up some greenish accents and slight sweetness. On the palate it’s ample and fairly sweet, with sour berry fruit supported by berry fruit acidity and slight greenish accents, while the tannins are slight and have a warm greenish burr. Quite direct and up front, one of those wines people set out and drink. And yes, there is a place for them.
1 star

Bolla

Bolla Bardolino Chiaretto Classico 2012
Brilliant pink with salmon reflections and white rim The bouquet is fairly intense,a nd greenish, with some balsamic animal notes as well, and some sour berry fruit acidity. Brash, and fairly aggressive. On the palate it’s quite mineral, with minerality more than fruit and tannins that have a slight greenish burr, and flow into a peppery sour finish with underlying quite savory bitter accents. The palate is aggressive too, in a brash key, and if you like this very savory mineral style you will enjoy it, but it’s not for everyone.
1 star

Vinicio Bronzo

Vinicio Bronzo Bardolino Chiaretto 2012
Brilliant pink with lively reflections and white rim. The bouquet is fairly rich, with strawberry fruit supported by savory hoppy accents – the hops one uses in making a beer along the lines of an IPA – and some greenish notes. On the palate it’s bright, with savory strawberry fruit supported again by hops and by savory accents that flow into a long greenish hop laced savory finish. It’s a bit unusual, and while it will work quite well with foods and leaves the palate quite clean, you do have to like its peculiarities.
1 star

Cà Bottura

Cà Bottura Bardolino Chiaretto 2012
Lively rosy pink with brilliant reflections and white rim The bouquet is fairly rich, with strawberry fruit supported by sweetness and some mentholated notes also some mineral acidity. On the palate it’s fairly bright, with considerable minerality and sour raspberry fruit supported by slight greenish tannins that have a greenish burr, and flow into a war rather bitter savory mineral finish.
2 stars

Cà dei Colli

Cà dei Colli Bardolino Chiaretto Classico 2012
Brilliant rosy pink with pink reflections and white rim. The bouquet is quite young, with greenish accents and some berry fruit, but it’s still coming together. On the palate it’s fairly bright, with sour berry fruit supported by greenish bitterness that flows into a dusky brooding finish with some underbrush. The bitterness is somewhat distracting and also detracts from the wine.
1 star

Cantina Caorsa

Cantina Caorsa Bardolino Chiaretto Classico 2012
Pale rosy pink with pink reflections and white rim. The bouquet is moderately intense with strawberry and some greenish vegetal notes mingled with spice and algae. On the palate it’s savory, with moderately intense sour cherry  fruit supported by mineral laced strawberry acidity and by slight tannins that have a slight greenish burr, and also by savory minerality that flows into a rather bitter savory finish.
2 stars

Cantina di Castelnuovo del Garda

Cantina di Castelnuovo del Garda Bardolino Chiaretto Castelnuovo 2012
Lively pale salmon with brilliant salmon reflections and white rim. The bouquet is moderately intense, with savory notes and some almost medicinal algal accents, and underlying greenish notes. On the palate it’s bright, with fairly lively savory raspberry wild strawberry fruit supported by tannins that have a savory greenish burr, and by greenish acidity that flows into a warm greenish savory finish. Approachable in a brash key, and will work well with foods, though it’s not a wine to drink on its own.
2 stars

Cantina di Castelnuovo del Garda Bardolino Chiaretto Classico Cà Vegar 2012
Lively pink with pink reflections and white rim. The bouquet is moderately intense and still coming together, with greenish accents and some mineral notes and slight menthol too. On the palate it’s savory, with minerality more than fruit and underlying sea salt that flows into a warm savory finish. It’s brash and a bit more alcoholic – and aggressive – than I might have liked.
1 star

Cantina di Custoza

Cantina di Custoza Bardolino Chiaretto I Classici 2012
Brilliant pink with pink reflections and white rim. The bouquet is fairly sweet, with strawberry fruit supported by slightly jammy mentholated accents and some greenish spice. On the palate it’s fairly direct, with savory wild berry fruit supported by alcoholic warmth and by slight tannins that have a greenish burr and flow into a greenish savory finish that is tempered by slight alcoholic sweetness. Straight forward and up front.
1 star

Cantina di Custoza Bardolino Chiaretto Classico val dei Molini 2012
Lively pinkish ruby with pink reflections and white rim. The bouquet is moderately intense, with greenish vegetal accents mingled with sweetness and hints of yellow peaches. On the palate it’s fairly direct and savory, with sour berry fruit supported by alcoholic warmth and tannins that have a greenish burr, and flow into a sour berry fruit finish. It’s fairly straight forward, in a slightly greenish key, and will drink well with foods without demanding center stage.
1 star

Casaretti

Casaretti Bardolino Chiaretto Classico 2012
Pale salmonate pink with pink reflections and white rim. The bouquet is still very young, with greenish accents and some vegetal notes. On the palate it’s ample and soft, with fairly sweet strawberry fruit supported by wild strawberry acidity and some savory greenish notes that flow into a fairly bright greenish savory finish with underlying acidity. Less minerality and more acidity than some
2 stars

Cascina Mondator

Cascina Mondator Bardolino Chiaretto 2012
Lively pink with some salmon in the reflections and white rim. The bouquet is moderately intense with some red berry fruit and strawberry supported by dried algae and berry fruit acidity. On the palate it’s ample and fairly soft, with sour cherry fruit supported by berry fruit acidity and by tannins that have a slight greenish burr to them and flow into a warm slightly sour finish. A fair amount of alcohol, and a somewhat softer less mineral approach, with much less in the way of savoriness.
1 star

Natale Castellani

Natale Castellani Bardolino Chiaretto Cà dei Rotti 2012
Lively pink with brilliant reflections and white rim. The bouquet is moderately intense, with mentholated notes and some sweetness mingled with herbs and some algae. On the palate it’s ample, with fairly soft slightly bitter sour berry fruit supported by slight tannins that have agreenish burr and flow into a fairly long sour berry fruit finish with a greenish tannic underpinning from which some sea salt emerges. Fairly soft, and less mineral than many, thouhg the finish does become savory.
2 stars

Gerardo Cesari

Gerardo Cesari Bardolino Chiaretto Classico 2012
Brilliant pink with pink reflections and white rim The bouquet is moderately intense, with some red berry fruit supported by citric acidity and some greenish accents. Very young still. On the palate it’s ample and rather soft, with moderately intense mineral laced berry fruit supported by some acidity and some minerality, which flows into a fairly mineral finish. It lacks vibrancy and verve.
1 star

Renato Corradini

Renato Corradini Bardolino Chiaretto Classico 2012
Lively pink with brilliant pink reflections and white rim. The bouquet is fairly intense, with greenish accents and some algae supported by sea salt and some spice. On the palate it’s ample and fairly soft, with sweetish sour cherry fruit supported by slight tannins that have a greenish burr, and by some savory minerality that emerges in the finish. I’d have liked a bit more depth than it has, and though the savory minerality is nice, more brightness to the fruit.
1 star

Corte Gardoni

Corte Gardoni Bardolino Chiaretto 2012
Pale antique rose pink with salmon reflections and white rim. The bouquet is muted, htough swishing brings up some savory accents. On the palate it’s fairly bright, with savory sour berry fruit supported by tannins that have a greenish bitter burr and flow into a fairly long savory finish with a bitter greenish tannic underpinning. It’s pleasant in a savory key, and leaves the palate quite clean, but didn’t grab me as much as other vintages have.
2 stars

Corte Gioliare

Corte Gioliare Bardolino Chiaretto Classico 2012
Lively pink with white rim. The bouquet is moderately intense, with strawberry and some greenish accents supported by some sweetness. On the palate it’s fairly bright, with sour berry fruit supported by warmth and sour berry fruit acidity, and by tannins that have a slight greenish burr and flow into a fairly sweet sour berry fruit finish. It’s more fruit driven and less mineral than many, and if you like the style, which tends a little more towards sweetness, is quite approachable.
2 stars

Costadoro

Costadoro Bardolino Chiaretto Classico 2012
Brilliant rosy pink with lively reflections and white rim. The bouquet is deft, with minerality and algae mingled with some greenish accents and spice; it’s still very young. On the palate it’s deft, with lively sour berry fruit supported by considerable savory minerality and a fair amount of alcoholic warmth, which flow into a long bright savory finish with some greenish accents. Considerable elegance and finesse, and will work well with foods or as an aperitif.
88-90

Fratelli Zeni

Fratelli Zeni Bardolino Chiaretto Classico Vigne Alte 2012
Pale salmon with salmon reflections and white rim. The bouquet is moderately intense and fairly sweet, with some strawberry fruit supported by greenish mentholated accents and some spice. Fairly direct, and there isn’t much acidity. On the palate it’s ample and rather soft, with moderately intense sour berry fruit supported by some greenish acidity and by tannins that have a slight burr; there are sme savory accents but not many, and the finish has the same underlying sweetness found in the attack.
1 star

Frezza

Frezza Bardolino Chiaretto 2012
Lively pink with pink reflections and white rim The bouquet is fairly sweet, with some strawberry fruit supported by mentholated notes and some greenish notes. On the palate it’s mineral, with greenish accents and a great deal of sea salt supported by slight greenish tannins that have a savory burr and flow into a sour savory finish. A food wine that cleans the palate quite well, but that is aggressive enough that I wouldn’t want to drink it by itself. If you like the style you will enjoy it.
2 stars

Susanna e Eugenio Girardelli

Susanna e Eugenio Girardelli Bardolino Chiaretto Classico 2012
Pale pink with brilliant reflections and pink rim. The bouquet is moderately intense with some strawberry supported by raspberry acidity and greenish accents with algae as well. On the palate it’s maple and bright, with lively savory wild strawberry fruit supported by wild strawberry acidity that flows into a bright savory sour berry fruit finish. Pleasant in a bright fairly aggressive key, and will work quite well with foods.
2 stars

Giuseppe e Gian Pietro Girardi

Giuseppe e Gian Pietro Girardi Bardolino Chiaretto Classico 2012
Pale salmon pink with brilliant salmon reflections and white rim. The bouquet is fairly intense, with red berry fruit supported by some sweetness and slight mentholated accents, also some algae. On the palate it’s quite savory, with minerality more than fruit and peppery mineral acidity that flows into a decidedly mineral finish. It’s a touch too mineral for me, though it does leave the palate quite clean, and the savory accents that emerge as it fows into the finish are nice.
1 star

Girasole

Girasole Bardolino Chiaretto Classico 2012
Lively pink with brilliant reflections and white rim. The bouquet is muted, though swishing brings up some wild berry fruit and some savory notes mingled with some dried algae. On the palate it’s quite mineral, with minerality and savory notes working hand in hand; there’s not much fruit nor fruit acidity – it’s minerality that carries things, and if you like this you will like the wine. If you prefer more fruit you will like it less.
1 star

Guerrieri Rizzardi

Guerrieri Rizzardi Bardolino Chiaretto Classico 2012
Brilliant rosy pink with lively reflections and white rim. The bouquet is moderately intense, with algae and mentholated notes mingling with bitterness and some spice. On the palate it’s bright, with lively vegetal laced sour berry fruit supported by tannins that have a warm quite savory burr and flow into a long rather bitter savory finish. It’s palate cleansing, and fairly aggressive, and if you like the style you will enjoy it; by comparison with many others it is more charged, and this is also something you will like or not.
2 stars

Il Pignetto

Il Pignetto Bardolino Chiaretto Classico 2012
Lively rose with brilliant rosy reflections and white rim. The bouquet is muted, though swishing brings up some vegetal notes and some sour berry fruit and some algae. On the palate it’s savory, with lively mineral acidity and sea salt supported by slightly greenish tannins that have a greenish burr and flow into a savory finish. Quite mineral, and leaves the palate quite clean; if you like wines that revolve more around savoriness and minerality than fruit you will enjoy it.
2 stars

La Cà

La Cà Bardolino Chiaretto Classico 2012
Lively pink with brilliant pink reflections and white rim. The bouquet is fairly sweet, with strawberry fruit supported by jammy notes and some greenish accents. On the palate it’s bright, with lively sour strawberry and raspberry fruit supported by vegetal laced tart sour raspberry acidity and by tannins that have a slight greenish burr, and flow into a savory sour raspberry finish. It’s fairly aggressive, and will work quite well wth foods, including fried meats or fish. Somehting to think about if you like the style.
2 stars

La Presa

La Presa Bardolino Chiaretto 2012
Pale rose pink with lively pink reflections and white rim. The bouquet is fairly intense, with greenish notes mingled with jammy strawberry and forest berry fruit. The palate is ample and mineral, with slightly bitter minerality and some savory accents, that flow into a fairly long mineral finish; I found myself wishing for more verve than I found.
1 star

Lamberti

Lamberti Bardolino Chiaretto Classico Santepietre 2012
Lively slightly salmonate pink with lively pink reflections and white rim. The bouquet is fairly bright, with sour berry fruit supported by some greenish accents and some brambly minerality. On the palate it’s fairly tart, with sour berry fruit supported by minerality and tannins that have a greenish peppery burr and flow into a fairly long savory finish. It’s fairly alcoholic, but clean, and will work quite well with foods.
2 stars

La Rocca

La Rocca Bardolino Chiaretto Classico 2012
Lively slightly electric pink with brilliant reflections and white rim. The bouquet is not as clean as it might be, with hints of hazelnut and a degree of mustiness that a fellow taster calls plasticky. On the palate it’s ample and rather soft, with moderately intense savory sour berry fruit supported by tannins that have a slight peppery burr and flow into a greenish finish. Lacks verve and the nose is problematic.
1 star

Le Fraghe

Le Fraghe Bardolino Chiaretto Rodon 2012
Lively slightly orange pink with brilliant salmon reflections and white rim. The bouquet is moderately intense, with some greenish accents and slight algae, and also some sour berry fruit. On the palate it’s fairly bright, with greenish sour berry fruit supported by savory berry fruit acidity and by slight tannins that have a slight burr, and flow into a fairly quick vegetal laced finish.
1 star

Le Ginestre

Le Ginestre Bardolino Classsico Chiaretto Cà Roina 2012
Brilliant rose pink with electric pink reflections and white rim. The bouquet is moderately intense and rather metallic with some minerality as well but not much in the way of fruit. On the palate it’s ample, with moderately intense sour berry fruit supported by some berry fruit acidity and by some greenish accents, while there are also savory notes. However, not enough, nor is there as much acidity as I would have hoped for, and it flags.
1 star

Le Muraglie

Le Muraglie Bardolino Chiaretto Birò 2012
Lively slightly salmonate pink with almandine reflections and white rim. The bouquet is muted, though swishing brings up some greenish notes and hints of algae. On the palate it’s bright, with lively sour strawberry fruit supported by greenish berry fruit acidity and by savory notes while there are also slight tannins with a greenish tannic burr that flow into a fairly bright sour berry fruit finish. Pleasant and palate cleansing in a fairly aggressive key; it will work well with foods though I wouldn’t likely drink it by the glass.
2 stars

Le Tende

Le Tende Bardolino Chiaretto Classico 2012
Lively pink with brilliant reflections and white rim. The bouquet is greenish, with some vegetal notes mingled with slight strawberry; it’s also quite closed still, though with more swishing some cooked accents emerge, as does peppery spice. On the palate it’s direct, with moderately intense sour berry fruit supported by sour minerality that comes to the fore, and by a fair amount of alcohol that flows into considerable rather peppery warmth in the finish, which is also rather savory
1 star

Lenotti

Lenotti Bardolino Chiaretto Classico 2012
Lively pink with brilliant pinkish orange reflections and white rim. The bouquet is fairly intense, with sur berry fruit supported by some citric acidity and some brambly vegetal notes, and also slight dried algae. On the palate it’s fairly bright, with sour forest berry fruit supported by slight duskiness and by tannins that have a greenish savory burr and flow into a fairly long savory greenish finish with some sour berry fruit as well It will drink nicely with foods, and has sufficient acidity to work well with fried meats and vegetables too.
2 stars

Marcello Marchesini

Marcello Marchesini Bardolino Chiaretto Classico 2012
Lively pink with pink reflections and white rim. The bouquet is muted, though some acidity and slight berry fruit emerges. On the palate it’s ample, with soft sour berry fruit supported by slightly greenish acidity that has some savory notes, and by tannins that have a slight greenish burr and flow into a sour berry fruit finish with a greenish savory underpinning Fairly direct, but will drink well with foods. Something to set out and need a second bottle of.
2 stars

Monte dei Roari

Monte dei Roari Bardolino Chiaretto 2012
Brilliant slightly salmonate pink with antique rose reflections and white rim. The bouquet is moderately intense, with greenish accents ans some red berry fruit supported by some acidity and some algae. On the palate it’s bright, with lively sour berry fruit supported by sour berry fruit acidity and by tannins that have a slight greenish burr, and flow into a moderately savory tart finish. It’s approachable in a bright acidic key and will drink well with foods, including fried fish or meats.
2 stars

Monte del Frà

Monte del Frà Bardolino Chiaretto 2012
Lively antique rose with brilliant reflections and white rim. The bouquet is moderately intense with sour berry fruit and some greenish accents supported by slight sweetness. On the palate it’s a bit softer than I expected, with moderately intense sour berry fruit supported by greenish minerality and savory accents; it’s somewhat lacking in verve.
1 star

Monte Zovo

Monte Zovo Bardolino Chiaretto 2012
Lively rose pink with brilliant reflections and white rim. The bouquet is moderately intense and rather green, with some berry fruit supported by hints of sweetness and some dusky brambly accents On the palate it’s bright, with savory minerality supporting some mineral acidity, and by peppery spice, which flows into a finish that has slight hints of sweetness mingled into the peppery spice. I’d have liked a little more fruit to keep it up.
1 star

Lorenzo Morando

Lorenzo Morando Bardolino Chiaretto 2012
Lively rose pink with brilliant reflections and white rim. The bouquet is muted, though swishing brings up some greenish accents and vegetal notes,a nd also some heather from a cut field. Not much in the way of fruit now. On the palate it’s ample and rather soft, with moderate sour berry fruit supported by tannins that have a greenish burr, and flow into a greenish savory finish. I’d have liked more richness to the fruit, which is somewhat lacking.
1 star

Pigno

Pigno Bardolino Chiaretto 2012
Brilliant rose petal pink with lively pink reflections and white rim. The bouquet is muted, though swishing brings up some sweetness and slight red berry fruit. On the palate it’s mineral, with some sour berry fruit supported by bitterness more than acidity, and by tannins that are slightly greenish and flow into a rather bitter greenish finish. More acidity, and more brightness would have been nice.
1 star

Albino Piona

Albino Piona Bardolino Chiaretto 2012
Pale antique rose with brilliant reflections and white rim.  The bouquet is fairly intense, wit greenish vegetal accents mingled with red berry fruit and some mentholated accents, also some spice. Promising but quite young. On the palate it’s bright, with lively sour berry fruit supported by fairly bright slightly greenish acidity and by tannins that have a slight burr, and flow into a clean sour savory berry fruit finish with a greenish tannic underpinning. Pleasant and approachable.
2 stars

Giorgio Poggi

Giorgio Poggi Bardolino Chiaretto 2012
Lively rose petal pink with brilliant reflections and white rim. The bouquet is fairly intense, and fairly sweet, with moderately intense red berry fruit supported by some greneish accents and slight gunflint. On the palate it’s ample and soft, with fairly rich savory berry fruit supprted by greenish accents and moderate mineral acidity that flows into a moderately bitter finish. There isn’t quite as much acidity as I’d have liked, and this settles the wine some.
1 star

Raval

Raval Bardolino Chiaretto Classico 2012
Lively pale rose petal  pink with brilliant reflections and white rim. The bouquet is muted, though swishing brings up some sweetness and slight red berry fruit supported by slight greenish mentholated accents. On the palate it’s ample and fairly soft, with moderately intense sour berry fruit that gives way quickly to savory minerality and some greenish accents, which flow into a moderately long peppery mineral finish with a savory underpinning and slight sweetness that I found distracting, as it goes crosscurrent to the savory notes.
1 star

Dante Righetti

Dante Righetti Bardolino Chiaretto Classico 2012
Lively rose petal pink with electric pink reflections and white rim. The bouquet is muted, though swishing brings up some sweetness and slight floral accents mingled with red berry fruit. On the palate it’s mineral, with bitterness and some sour lemon acidity, but not much in the way of fruit; the finish is a continuation of the palate with bitter slightly greenish minerality, and I found myself wishing for more verve, though the wine will work well with foods, and is something one could set out and drink.
1 star

Enzo Righetti

Enzo Righetti Bardolino Chiaretto Classico 2012
Lively rose pink with brilliant electric pink reflections and white rim. The bouquet is muted, though swishing brings up slight sweetish notes and some vegetal accents. On the palate it’s bright, with lively sour cherry fruit supported by raspberry acidity and tannins that have a slight greenish burr and flow into a sour berry fruit finish with tannic underpinning Pleasant though very young, and will drink nicely with foods.
2 stars

Roccolo del Lago

Roccolo del Lago Bardolino Chiaretto Classico 2012
Salmonate pink with brilliant reflections and white rim. The bouquet is intense and rather smoky, with hints of toasted hazelnuts, with some savory hop accents as well. A bit disjointed and one hopes this is bottling. On the palate it’s ample and soft with moderately intense sour berry fruit supported by minerality and tannins that have a slight toasted hazelnut overlay and flow into a warm spicy finish. It’s not as clean as it might be, and the hazelnuts distract.
1 star

Ronca

Ronca Bardolino Chiaretto 2012
Lively rose petal pink with brilliant reflections and white rim. The bouquet is moderately intense, with berry fruit and hints of reduction that may be from bottling. On the palate it’s bright, with moderately intense greenish berry fruit supported by peppery spice and sour berry fruit acidity that flows into a savory rather sour finish with a powerful peppery underpinning that I found somewhat distracting. Because of its zesty aggressiveness  it will work well with rich cook out foods, but I’d have liked a more cohesive whole.
1 star

Sartori

Sartori Bardolino Chiaretto Classico 2012
Lively rose petal pink with brilliant reflections and white rim.  The bouquet is shut tight, of the nobody home variety. On the palate it’s bright, with farly rich sour cherry fruit supported by wild strawberry raspberry acidity and by slight greenish accents that flwo into a fairly quick berry fruit finish. Pleasant but a bit short.
1 star

Tamburino Sardo

Tamburino Sardo Bardolino Chiaretto 2012
Brilliant slightly orange rose petal pink with brilliant reflections and white rim. The bouquet is moderately intense with greenish vegetal accents and some brambles mingled with some red berry fruit and slight berry fruit acidity. On the palate it’s bright, with lively sour forest berry fruit supported by peppery spice and by tannins that have a slight peppery burr, and flow into a clean sour berry fruit finish Pleasant in a tart rather aggressive key and will work very well with foods in the summer months.
2 stars

Giovanna Tantini

Giovanna Tantini Bardolino Chiaretto 2012
Lively rose petal pink with brilliant reflections and white rim. . The bouquet is fairly sweet with hints of hardwood ash and plastic that are a bit of a surprise. Not as clean as I might have liked. On the palate it’s savory with bitter greenish accents that flow into a peppery finish with some chemical accents. It didn’t work for me.
1 star

Tinazzi

Tinazzi Bardolino Chiaretto Campo delle Rose
Lively rose petal pink with rosy reflections and white rim. The bouquet is moderately intense with some red berry fruit and slight greenish accents and as it opens savory notes. On the palate it’s peppery, with aggressive greenish berry fruit supported by savory minerality and slight greenish tannins that flow into a decidedly peppery finish. It’s fairly straight forward.
1 star

Tre Colline

Tre Colline Bardolino Chiaretto Classico 2012
Lively rose petal pink with brilliant reflections and white rim. The bouquet is deft, with strawberry and some raspberry fruit supported by slight sweetness and some heather, with bramble and some underlying vegetal accents On the palate it’s bright, with fairly rich peppery sour strawberry and raspberry fruit supported by considerable mineral acidity and by tannins that are savory and slightly greenish, with a burr that provides definition and warmth. Pleasant in a fairly aggressive key and will work well with foods.
2 stars

Valetti

Valetti Bardolino Chiaretto Classico 2012
Lively rose petal pink with brilliant reflections and white rim. The bouquet is muted, though swishing brings up some sweetness and slight berry fruit. On the palate it’s a bit flat, with moderate fruit and moderate acidity supporting some greenish accents. Lacks verve and vitality.
1 star

Cantina Valpolicella Negrar

Cantina Valpolicella Negrar Bardolino Chiaretto Classico Domini Veneti 2012
Lively slightly orange rose, with brilliant reflections and white rim. The bouquet is fairly intense and rather animal, more than one expects from a Chiaretto, with hints of hops as well. Not quite like sniffing a beer but in that direction. On the palate it’s flat, and again has hoppy notes that are unexpected in a rosè wine. Not sure what happened here, but it’s unusual.
1 star

Villa Medici

Villa Medici Bardolino Chiaretto 2012
Pale rose pink with brilliant reflections and white rim. The bouquet is fairly rich, with delicate floral accent supported by some sweetness and slight red berry fruit. On the palate it’s bright, with lively sour berry fruit supported by greenish tannins that have a slight burr and by savory notes that flow into a long fairly tart savory sour berry fruit finish. Pleasant and approachable in a fairly bright rather aggressive key, and will drink quite well with foods.
2 stars

Zenato

Zenato Bardolino Chiaretto 2012
Lively rose petal pink with brilliant reflection and white rim. The bouquet is muted, though swishing brings up some red berry fruit and slight acidity. On the palate it’s more mineral than I had expected, with little in the way of fruit or acidity, and a fair amount of peppery spice that works with the bitterness to carry the show, while sea salt emerges in the finish. I’d have liked more acidity to work with the wine.
1 star

Vigneti Villabella

Vigneti Villabella Bardolino Chiaretto 2012
Pale salmonate pink with brilliant reflections and white rim. The bouquet is muted, of the nobody home variety. On the palate it’s ample and rather soft, with moderate fruit supported by moderate slightly greenish acidity and by tannins that have a warm savory burr, and flow into a savory finish. I found it to be lacking in tightness and verve.
1 star

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.
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