Wine Talk

Snooth User: erniex

Aglianico - is it just me, or is it truely great?

Posted by erniex, Dec 6, 2011.

Some 6 years back I bought 2 bottles of a wine called Camarato from Villa Matilde. 2001 vintage.

About a 2 years ago I opened the first bottle and was just blown away. Since then I have been very curious on anything Aglianico (though Camarato its actually a mix containing also 20% Piedirosso). Not that I find them around too much, but none the less have found treasure after treasure. Some crap, obviously, too (like burned rubber mostly when it happens) but a lot of seriously great wines. Very foodfriendly, and many even great for laying down.

Probably just me a bit slow on a known thing, so in case others are slow like me, try it out before it becomes a connoisseur thing.



Reply by JonDerry, Dec 7, 2011.

Aglianico has come up a couple times of late, i'm still looking forward to trying some. Kind of reminds me of the wines from Priorat in that they're powerful wines with a reputation, but in terms of popularity they don't even make the top 3 in terms of popularity in their respective european countries (at least for exports). Also, both are not very easy to find here in the states, though Priorat is probably more readily available.

Just some musings...the similaritites end there for the most part. Aglianico has stronger tannins that need some bottle age to resolve, etc.

Reply by erniex, Dec 7, 2011.

Not sure that I agree on the Priorat comparison, apart from both being wines of certain concentration. I find the best Aglianicos a lot more refined, generally less oaked, and with a lot more personality. Actually I find Priorat kind of overrated, when exactly my point on Campania and Basilicata is that they are fairly unknown to many thus offering some great value quality wines. Taurasi is of course kind of a brand, but still not to the extend that you have to mortgae your home to get near even the best of them.

Reply by GregT, Dec 7, 2011.

I don't think Jon was pairing them so much stylistically as much as in terms of their place in the wine world. Doesn't really work because Priorat is a region and Aglianico a grape, but I get his point. 

In fact, although wine has been made in Priorat for a long time, I think Aglianico has a much older reputation. If I'm not mistaken, it was introduced by the Phoenecians and by Roman times, the areas that are today Basilicata and Campania were the sources of fine wine made from that grape. So it has a long history in those regions.

Priorat is a little more recent insofar as fine wine production goes, and a lot of its rep is based on grapes that were introduced very recently, like Garnacha after phylloxera and Cab in the 1980s, even though wine was produced there for a long time.

But it doesn't really matter does it?  I think Mastrobernardino deserves a lot of credit for whatever status Aglianico has today, as they were the early champions when nobody else cared. So if you're going to drink it, you need to at least give a nod to theirs!  Stylistically, the wines of Campania and Priorat are really different, but luckily, many of the former are still pretty inexpensive.

Reply by JonDerry, Dec 8, 2011.

Interesting how my 2nd post evaporated here, no offensive language that I can remember.

Reply by dmcker, Dec 8, 2011.

That happens from time to time on this site, Jon. Not deleted by admins, but by ether gremlins.

And yeah, aglianico is well worth some drinking time. First ran across it decades ago in Italy. Still not making a presence, at all, over here in Japan. I second Greg's nod to Mastrobernardino....

Reply by Giacomo Pevere, Dec 8, 2011.

Wow Greg! U know Mastroberardino!

For Erniex, if u want find some great wines with Aglianico u have to looking for "Taurasi DOCG", it's the name of a Campania wine, is done with 100% of Aglianico and as GregT say Mastroberardino is the godfather of it, Taurasi Radici Riserva is probably his best bottle. Last Vintage 90+ rated, 25 euros here in italy. Another Campania wine is "Aglianico del Taburno DOC".

About Priorat, sorry i'm completely ignorant.

Reply by erniex, Dec 8, 2011.

Im on to Mastrobernadino by now, and in fact bought the Radici Riserva 99 back in August. As per the merchant just recieved from the estate - a "follow up batch" or do they always relase that late? An awesome wine indeed, and exactly points out what I like about the place - loads of personality, but without getting strange. Meaning its not just interesting for being different, but for being different alongside high quality and drinkability. And amazing longevity by the way. The 01 Camarato I mentioned in the initial post Id say have another 10 years on bottle - easy.

("I don't think Jon was pairing them so much stylistically as much as in terms of their place in the wine world") OK, I get it...

Reply by Giacomo Pevere, Dec 9, 2011.

@erniex last vintage of Radici Riserva is 2005, i suppose they usually sell it 6 years after vintage.

A lot of winemaker are used to take if a part of the bottles, and then after some years sell it, it's a good idea to offer a well aged bottle at it's best time. Your 1999 is, i suppose, one of that.

Reply by Gregory Dal Piaz, Dec 9, 2011.

First off, I don't delete postsunless they are spam or personal attacks. A bit of rough language is good for the soul.

Greg, I think Aglianico has a recorded history in Italy, in Capmpagnia, going back over 1500 years.

Aglianico is a tough wine for me, so many are full or promise, than I stash them in the cellar and try them years later and they are... still full of promise.

I tasted quite afew last year whne I visited Puglia, and the Antica Enotria, Carbone, Grifalco and were my favorites though the blend and L'Astore produces with 25% Petit Verdot was stunning..


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