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Luciano Sandrone Newsletter

March 14, 2013 by Christine No Comments »
Greetings!

The beginning of March brings with it the first hints of spring; a warm day here and there, the ground emerging from under a layer of snow on the south-facing hillsides, early-budding trees showing the first shimmer of green. But there are still drifts of snow melting on the hillsides and in the town piazzas, puddles on the ground regularly freeze overnight. Snow flurries, fog and drizzly, cold rain come with depressing monotony.

San Pietro Cru Winter
The San Pietro cru (foreground) with Mon Viso rising
above it in the distance, February 2013
Cortile Winter 2013
The cortile of the Cantina after a dusting of snow, January 2013

 

It is mud season.

The vineyards themselves are unworkable today – the recent wet weather means that we simply slip and slide around when working in the vines. The clay soils of the region stick to everything – cleaning the tractors takes just as long as the time we use them in the vineyard. So it’s a good time to work on projects here at the cantina, and this is also the time of year when much of the bottling gets done.

 

We are looking forward to better weather and the warm, limpid days of spring, when we can get out and do a full day’s work in the vines without coming back covered in layers of mud. By early April, we expect the vines to be budding; from this point the season is “on!” We are excited to get started!

 

 

As always, we thank you for your continued interest in our wines, and we hope to continue to fulfill your expectations of quality and excellence in the bottle.

 

With warmest regards,

 

Luciano Sandrone

Barbara Sandrone

Luca Sandrone

 

———-

Winter SAN w Cannubi
The Cantina after a mid-February snowstorm. Note how the Cannubi Boschis hill, just behind the winery, is already clear of snow; this is due to its excellent southeast exposition.
 

Pasquale and the 2011 harvest

February 6, 2012 by Christine No Comments »

You may think that wine merchants in Ireland never really get their hands dirty with the manufacturing processes. However, to prove you wrong, Rebecca has put together a few shots of Pasquale out in Piemonte (home to fabulous reds such as Barolo, Barbera, Barbaresco, Nebbiolo and Dolcetto or amazing whites like Gavi di Gavi and Roero Arneis) lending a hand with the 2011 harvest and taking a tour around some vineyards.

PASQUALE’S TIME IN A VINEYARD!

Just click on the link to see what she has prepared

Why do we do these things? – to ensure that when we offer you A Taste of Italy, we are offering the real thing!

 

Minestrone – Healthy, warming and easy on the pocket

December 27, 2011 by Christine 2 Comments »

When it’s cold outside and Christmas is over, a good warming home-made minestrone will make you feel cosy. With the added bonus of being full of goodness what more could you want?

Ingredients (for 4 people):

      • Half an onion, finely chopped
      • 1 carrot, quartered lengthways and chopped into small cubes
      • 1 stick celery, quartered lengthways and finely sliced
      • 1 more vegetable of choice cut into small pieces
      • 1 tin cannellini beans (or 200gr dried cannellini beans soaked overnight in cold water)
      • 1/2 tin chopped tomatoes
      • 500ml Chicken or vegetable stock
      • 4 tbsp olive oil
      • 200g small pasta shapes (or you can break up spaghetti into small lengths)
      • 500ml water
      • salt

In a large saucepan, heat the oil and then sauté the onions until soft. Add the bacon/pancetta if you are using it and cook for a couple of minutes. Then add the carrots, celery and your extra vegetable (I often use a handful of green beans, a courgette or some broccoli but this is a great way to use up vegetables from the fridge). Cook for a couple of minutes, stirring well and then add the beans and the chopped tomato. Pour the stock over the top, bring to the boil and let it simmer for about an hour and a half (you can do it in 30 minutes if you are using tinned beans).

In a second small saucepan, boil the water and salt to taste (dissolve the salt in the water, then taste the water to see if you like the taste and add more salt or water accordingly). Add the pasta and cook for the time stated on the packet.

Mix the pasta with the minestrone and serve hot with crusty bread, ground pepper and a sprinkling of parmesan.

We enjoyed ours with a glass of Barbera from Vinchio Vaglio Serra. How will you enjoy yours?

 

 

LUCIANO SANDRONE – RECOGNITION FROM WINE SPECTATOR

December 20, 2011 by Christine No Comments »

We are very excited to share with you the scores we recently received from Antonio Galloni in the Wine Advocate.  Writing in Issue 197 of October 2011, he said:

 “This is a gorgeous set of entry-level wines from Luciano Sandrone that speak to the estate’s unwavering commitment to quality throughout the range. These are fabulous wines that make a great introduction to the work of one of Piedmont’s leading estates.”

 Thank you Antonio for recognizing that we take quality at every level extremely seriously. We strive to put the same care, passion and dedication into every bottle we make, whether it be the basic Dolcetto or a bottle of Barolo Cannubi Boschis.

 Here are the comments and scores for the entry-level wines just released:

2009 Nebbiolo d’Alba “Valmaggiore”  92 points

 “The 2009 Nebbiolo d’Alba Valmaggiore is striking. It flows from the glass with sweet red fruits, flowers, spices and herbs in a very representative expression of this site. This is a gorgeous, poised Nebbiolo with wonderful mid-palate sweetness and fabulous overall balance. A clean, saline finish gives the wine its focus and proportion on the finish. Anticipated maturity: 2011-2019.”

  2009 Barbera d’Alba  90 points

“The 2009 Barbera d’Alba impresses for its silkiness, finesse and sheer harmony. This is a mid-weight vintage for the Barbera, but here, too, the wine’s balance is totally irresistible. This shows lovely mid-palate pliancy in a feminine style that is incredibly appealing. Sweet dark cherries, flowers and subtle hints of French oak linger on the polished, impeccable finish. Anticipated maturity: 2011-2016.” 

2010 Dolcetto d’Alba  90 points

“The 2010 Dolcetto d’Alba is a beautifully articulated, vibrant wine loaded with varietal character. In keeping with the personality of the year, this is less fruit driven than many other recent vintages, but that is actually a plus here given the low yields that inform the estate’s wines. The Dolcetto shows terrific intensity and verve from start to finish. Anticipated maturity: 2012-2016.”

We would also like to thank all of you who have supported and enjoyed our wines over the years. We truly appreciate your continued interest and we will always strive to exceed your expectations for our wines.

 With warmest regards, 

 Luciano Sandrone

Barbara Sandrone

Luca Sandrone

 

You can find Sandrone wines in our on-line shop at www.atasteofitaly.ie

We look forward to seeing you there

 

Vinchio – Vaglio Serra

December 16, 2011 by Christine No Comments »

Vinchio Vaglio Serra is a “Vinegrowers Association” located near Asti in the town of Vinchio. Far from your typical “social winery,” Vinchio Vaglio Serra controls all aspects of the production process from vine to bottle.

Their wines have garnered the highest possible praise from Gambero Rosso, and for good reason. The Barbera grape thrives in the hills of Monferrato, and Vinchio Vaglio Serra truly knows Barbera.

The many growers associated with Vinchio Vaglio Serra have a long history with the cantina. Founded in 1959, the cantina has dedicated itself to promoting the illustrious, if often under-rated Barbera grape. Although they produce many other wines, Barbera is clearly the focus at this modern winery. All of the members of the winery are committed to working with a low environmental impact, reducing the use of pesticides.

The focus on quality in the vineyard is immediately recognisable when opening a bottle, and affirmed when visiting the vineyards surrounding the town of Vinchio. A more peaceful setting cannot be imagined, with the surrounding hills covered in vines, primarily Barbera.

But Vinchio Vaglio Serra is not limited toBarbera.  Their Barolo and Barbaresco are excellent representations of Nebbiolo, and you can also try their Moscato and Brachetto.

Vinchio – Vaglio Serra wines have won awards across the world.

In our shop you can buy La Romantica  2010 – a cabernet merlot mix which won a bronze medal in the Korean wine challenge.

Or if you prefer Barbera, we have I Tre Vescovi 2009 which was awarded a silver medal in the international wine challenge 2011, a bronze medal in Decanter WWA 2011 and silver (best in class) in IWSC 2011.

Sei Vigne Insynthesis has won Gold medals from Decanter and from ISWC as well as 2 red glasses from Gambero Rosso. This isn’t on the website but is available upon request.

These wines and more are available from our on line shop at www.atasteofitaly.ie

Enjoy a bottle of Vinchio Vaglio Serra wine today

 

Italian Grapes!!

June 29, 2010 by Inez No Comments »

This week A Taste of Italy is encouraging you to try something different!! Lets be honest, 99.9% of us have tried a Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay,Cabernet, Merlot, Shiraz etc etc etc etc, but why not try a grape which is indigenous to Italy??
For me there is something really unique and exciting about trying a wine where the grape is ONLY grown in that particular region in Italy, so not only can you NOT find it in any other country in the world, but more often then not it cant even be found in other regions of Italy!!!!!

For example the Valpolicella wine, is made up of 3 grapes, the Corvina Veronese, Rondinella and the Molinara grapes.  All of these grapes are grown only in the Veneto region of Northern Italy, and for me,  knowing this is what makes drinking a Valpolicella or Amarone a real pleasure!!

Of course there are many other indigenous grapes for example many of the wines from the Pidemonte region i.e. the Nebbiolo grape which is the grape responsibile for the Barolo, and Barbaresco wine, as well as the Barbera and Ruche’ wines. Really the list is endless, but this is what distinguishes New World and Old World wine, being an Australian I’m open to all wines, however this is what makes drinking Old World wines enjoyable for me!!

Enjoy!!

Inez O’Shea “A taste of Italy”