Vino e Cucina d'Italia

White Sangiovese – it does exist

Ever heard of a white Sangiovese? Sangiovese is a red wine grape, but Neil Duarte found a small winery near Siena making a white wine from this iconic red grape. And, he reports, a very excellent white wine it is. Here's his report.

Madonna di Como

Madonna di Como 2010 Dolcetto d'Alba ($14.99)

Produced by the respected Marchesi di Barolo, this classy Dolcetto is holding up very well despite five years in the bottle. It's a very dark blackish-purple color at the center, shading to garnet, then clear at the very edge. Good, characterful Dolcetto aromas, blueberries and blackberries and earthy moist clay. Fresh and bright on the palate with a subtle 12.5% alcohol; tart blueberries with a distinct edge of tannic astringency. Dark berries, a mineral note and a touch of lemon zest in the finish. A natural with red meat, it would also go well with cheese dishes or even game and organ meats. It was fine with a simple dish of conchiglie pasta with grilled sausages, garlic and butter.

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Wines for the Turkey

No meal is more challenging to the wine lover than the festive holiday dinner. "You are not only confronted with a panoply of flavors but with people, young and old, who may or may not like wine, white or red," writes Richard Fadeley. He set his his tasting panel to plow through a raft of wines to pick out the best. Here's his report.