“Plus, it looks beautiful on the summer table. A rare jewel of a rosé.”

“This is a terrific food wine, perhaps the most food-friendly rosé I’ve tasted in a year,” writes top U.S. wine blogger Meg Houston Maker.

“It has enough heft to stand up to grilled foods but enough freshness to pair with salads, cold seafood, and young cheeses. Plus, it looks beautiful on the summer table. A rare jewel of a rosé.”

We’re always thrilled to see Cantele wines in the media. But it was a special treat for us to read her impressions: she’s a U.S. leading wine educator and blogger and her writing (including her contributions to Palate Press) stand apart in our view as some of the best and most informed wine writing in America today (her background is in creative writing).

You can call her a “wine writer.” But we call her a damn good writer who just happens to write about wine…

Click here for her post.

Salice Salentino one of Odd Bacchus’ TOP REDS 2013!

rob frisch wine blog

We were thrilled to read that Chicago-based wine and travel writer Rob Frisch, author of the popular wine blog Odd Bacchus, had selected the 2009 Salice Salentino Riserva as one of his “top reds in 2013.”

Here’s what Rob Had to say about the wine…

According to The Sotheby’s Wine Encyclopedia, the best wines in Italy’s Salice Salentino DOC are its Negroamaro-based reds, and the Cantele certainly did not disappoint.

This 100% Negroamaro had tight, powdery red-fruit aroma and ample fruit on the palate.

I got a blast of cherries, and others in the group also tasted currants and raisins.

Rich but bright, this full-bodied wine had well-balanced, rustic acids and some serious tannins on the finish.

Image via Odd Bacchus.

Divine green silence: synaesthesia and its role in wine tasting

blake illustration dante inferno

Above: William Blake’s depiction of Dante and Virgil heading toward the “dark wood” where “the sun is silent.” Image via BlakeArchive.org.

When Paolo Cantele told me that he and his family planned to call iSensi, their new cooking and wine tasting school, a “synaesthesia laboratory,” I wrote him back telling him he was crazy.

After all, few wine lovers and even fewer consumers in general know what synaesthesia is: it’s a literary figure whereby one of human senses is described by using another.

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Now & Zin reviews Cantele Negroamaro

cube west hollywood wine bar

Image via the Cube website.

Cube Café
615 North La Brea Avenue
(just south of Melrose)
Los Angeles, CA 90036
(323) 939-1148
Click here for Google Maps.

“The unoaked quality of this wine [Cantele 2010 Negroamaro] is so impressive,” writes angelino Randy Fuller, author of the popular Now and Zin wine blog, “I wish more red wines in the US were made that way. The freshness and the pairing with the food are heightened in the absence of oak treatment.”

“Whenever I have Italian wine with food, I am always struck by how well the two go together. It was the same at this meal, with the wine bringing out highlights in the meats and cheeses.”

Click here for Randy’s complete tasting notes and reflections on this wine.

Chardonnay

chardonnay

CLASSIFICATION: I.G.T. Salento.

GRAPE VARIETY: 100% Chardonnay.

PRODUCTION AREA: Guagnano (LE), Montemesola (TA).

TRAINING: Guyot (5,000 plants per hectare).

HARVEST: First ten days of August.

VINIFICATION: The grapes are destemmed, crushed, and gently pressed. The must is cooled to 10° C. in order to allow for natural fining. Alcoholic fermentation is carried out in stainless-steel vats at 15° C.

AGING POTENTIAL: A wine that will maintain its freshness and flavor for 2 years.

COLOR: Straw yellow with hints of green.

NOSE: Notes of lily, magnolia, juniper, and linden are followed by ripe fruit and seductive herbaceous aromas.

PALATE: The alcoholic structure and freshness in this wine reward the wine lover with its drinkability and approachability. Its rich finish mirrors its aromas with great balance.

PAIRING: Seafood in general, particularly mollusks and shellfish.
Vegetables and soft cheeses.

SERVING TEMPERATURE: 11° C. (52° F.).

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Negroamaro Rosato

best rose italy

CLASSIFICATION: I.G.T. Salento.

GRAPE VARIETY: 100% Negroamaro.

PRODUCTION AREA: Guagnano (LE).

TRAINING: Spur-pruned cordon-trained (5,000 plants per hectare).

HARVEST: Second half of September.

VINIFICATION: The grapes are macerated for 12-24 hours in order to extract the correct color from the skins and the classic aromatic notes of Negroamaro. The free-run must is fermented at 14-15° C. in stainless-steel vats where it remains until alcoholic fermentation is completed.

AGING: The wine is then aged in stainless-steel until bottling.

AGING POTENTIAL: Drink upon release or cellar for 1-2 years.

COLOR: Soft pink-rosé.

NOSE: Essence of geranium and rose combined with strawberry and cherry. Sweet and nuanced on the nose, with noteworthy tenacity.

PALATE: The wine’s impressive alcohol is balanced by its delicate flavors and light, bright freshness, elegance, and persistence.

PAIRING: Excellent with cheese soufflé, vegetable torts, and intensely flavored seafood and soups. Eggs, poached or scrambled, are also a favorite pairing.

SERVING TEMPERATURE: 11° C. (52° F.).

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Primitivo

Primitivo Zinfandel puglia

CLASSIFICATION: I.G.T. Salento.

GRAPE VARIETY: 100% Primitivo.

PRODUCTION AREA: Sava (TA), Torricella (TA), San Pietro Vernotico (BR).

TRAINING: Head-trained (alberello), (4,500 plants per hectare).

HARVEST: Early September.

VINIFICATION: After being destemmed and crushed, the must macerates with skin contact for 6-7 days. Fermentation is carried out at 25-26° C.

AGING: The wine is then aged in barriques for approximately 6 months.

AGING POTENTIAL: This wine is ready to drink but will continue to evolve for 3-4 years.

COLOR: Ruby red with delicate garnet undertones.

NOSE: The minerality of the nose creates a delicate combination of morello and sour cherry and prune. Floral and spicy notes follow in a superbly persistent finish.

PALATE: Gentle tannins, impressive acidity combine with the classic delicacy and alcoholic content of Primitivo in the flavors of this once forceful but now elegant and noble wine.

PAIRING: Pasta with rich meat sauces, excellent with red meat and in particular lamb. An ideal pairing for moderately aged as well as intense ripe cheeses.

SERVING TEMPERATURE: 18° C. (64° F.).

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