Top Ten Italian Red Wines - 2016

I tend to taste and drink a lot of wine over the course of a year. I am in a few tasting groups, sometimes the wines are consumed at various local wine store tastings and a number drunk with friends and family.

2015 Feudo Disisa Nero d'Avola Monreale Vuaria, Italy, Sicily, Monreale, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2015
Score: 
93
Grade: 
A

This is made from Nero D'Avola in Sicily.  It spends 14 months in barrels and another year in bottles prior to ageing.  It is bigger and deeper in style than most Nero D'Avolas.  Deep ruby in color, mostly opaque and bright.  The nose is interesting with a rye bread note along with cherries, black cherries and a slight dill.  Nice texture.  On the palate, cherries and sour cherries.  Firm tannins.  Some anise on the long finish.  It has a nice complexity.  This is drinking well now and should go another eight to ten years.  It will also work well with food.  Rosemary and garlic lamb chops w

2016 Castellani Sangiovese Toscana IGT, Italy, Tuscany, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2016
Score: 
91
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$20.00USD

This is Sangiovese from the excellent 2016 vintage.  Garnet in color, clear and bright.  The nose has cherries, tea leaves and spice.  Medium bodied.  Good acidity.  Light tannins.  On the palate, this has nice cherries with slight sour cherries and a hint of forest floor.  Some anise on the long finish.  This wine is meant for food.  A plate of pasta with marinara sauce would be great.  Drink over the next five years.  

2015 Azienda Agricola di Angelo Calcabrina Umbria Calcabrina Foglio 11, Italy, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2015
Score: 
92
Grade: 
A-

This is 100% Sagrantino from the heart of Italy (Umbria).  Deep garnet in color, mostly opaque and bright.  The nose has black cherries, spice and slight anise.  Medium bodied.  Good acidity.  Soft tannins.  On the palate, this has nice black cherry fruit with some underlying char.  Crisp.  Long finish.  This is better with some food to cut the acidity.  Pasta is classic.  Drink over the next fie to eight years.  

2020 Alessandro Viola Nero d'Avola Terre Siciliane Note di Rosso, Italy, Sicily, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2020
Score: 
90
Grade: 
A-

In attempting to discover the grapes in this, a brief search on the Internet revealed lots of suspects but no definitive answer.  Other grapes mentioned include Nerello Mascalese, Perricone and Merlot.  The varietals that popped up the most are a blend of Nero D'avola with a small percentage of Syrah.   Purple in color with a rim of persistent bubbles.  This wine is made in a "natural" style but other than the bubbles there were no noticeable faults.  The nose has lots of sour cherries, some anise, black pepper and slight black olives.  On the palate, this has light tannins, tart acidity an

2019 Sella & Mosca Cannonau di Sardegna Riserva, Italy, Sardinia, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2019
Score: 
88
Grade: 
B+
Current Price: 
$15.00USD

This is Grenache, called Cannonau in Sardinia. The Riserva designation indicates two years ageing before release including at least six months in barrel.  Ruby in color, clear and bright.  The nose has nice cherries with slight herbal notes.  Medium bodied.  On the palate, there is a slightly bitter note on the attack.  Lots of cherry fruit.  Medium tannins.  Slightly thin on the finish.  This drinks nicely on its own but works better with food.  A classic pizza wine.  

2004 Paolo Scavino Barolo Carobric, Italy, Piedmonte, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2004
Score: 
94
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$120.00USD

Lovely Barolo at a great place.  Purple in color with ruby hues, mostly clear and bright.  The nose has cherries, tar, slight roses and dust.  Medium bodied.  Medium to light tannins.  Layers of fruit and tertiary notes.  Cherries, and forest floor.  Nice balance.  Long finish.  This is nice on its own but really needs food.  Pasta with truffles or mushroom in a cream sauce would be great.  It is at peak but there should be another 5 to ten more years of peak drinking.  

2001 Arnaldo-Caprai Sagrantino di Montefalco Collepiano, Italy,

Vintage: 
2001
Score: 
95
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$89.00USD

This is from Umbria in Italy.  This bottle was bought on release and cellared.  Shared with friends who don't particularly like older wines and they did not like it.  I, however, was captivated by it.  Purple in color, opaque and mostly bright.  The nose has plums, black cherries, dust, and roasted herbs.  Full bodied.  Dense.  Medium tannins.  On the palate, not much fruit left but some black cherries.  Lots of tertiary notes of dust, tobacco, forest floor and minerality.  Strong acidity.  Complex and layered.  Nice finish.  Contemplative.  This is fully mature and past prime for some.  It

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