Weekly Weird & Wonderful Wines
Week One - Introduction & Riseccoli Piccolo Verdot 2011
This little weekly blog's purpose is to showcase some brilliantly curious and curiously brilliant wines from all parts of the world.
Whether it be varieties of grapes popping up where they are least expected, grapes you have never heard of and couldn't possibly pronounce or even those thought to be long extinct, suddenly re-appearing centuries later (Carménère and Pugnitello spring to mind), this blog will introduce all kinds of wine oddities to you.
Most of these wines will fall into these 3 categories:
Fish out of water - These are wines and grapes showing up far from home or where they are least expected to be grown.
Vino Incognitus - Varieties or styles of wine unknown to much of the world yet could be classic or have ancient origins in their own region.
Back from the Dead - These are varieties of grapes who have either fallen out of favour in years past or were potentially though to have gone extinct, disappearing completely from the world of wine, before re-discovering brings them back around.
Let's get started with our first wine!
Riseccoli Piccolo Verdot 2011
Category: Fish out of Water
Here we have an example of a classic grape variety taking a wrong turn at Albuquerque and ending up some where completely different than it's homeland.
The wine we are looking at this week is named Piccolo Verdot, an Italian
translation of Petit Verdot.
Wine makeup: 100% Piccolo (Petit) Verdot
Origins: Petit Verdot has it's roots firmly in Bordeaux, where it is a late-ripening grape often used to shore up the mid-palate of Cabernet Sauvignon blends.
Region: The producer here, Tenuta Riseccoli has brought a classic Bordeaux grape into the Chianti Classico region of Tuscany, one of the world's most famous wine producing regions.
Producer: Tenuta Riseccoli is a 16ha (40acre) estate located at Greve in Chianti, a majority of their estate is dedicated to Sangiovese for Chianti production, but from 2006 onwards they became possibly the only producer of a 100% Petit Verdot wine in the Chianti Classico region.
Getting down into the tasting, be prepared.. this wine is as much of an assault on the senses as it's Sangiovese brethren growing nearby.
Full and bold on almost every level, aromas of spice, dark plum and huge oak influence.
The palate is rich with a bristling undercurrent of tannin and high alcohol.
When you open this wine, it needs time to breathe and open up, I found 15 minutes in the glass sufficed, with the wine calming slightly to allow a certain supple smoothness to assert itself on the length and finish of the wine.
Only approx. 3,000 bottles of this wine are made per vintage so grab a bottle from your nearest stockist while you can.
Learn more about this wine at Tenuta Riseccoli !