Quick Swirl: Velletri Red Wine by Terre dei Volsci Riserva 2000 (billy)
OK, I bought this because the bottle was interestingly shaped and 2000 was a pretty good year for Italian wines. It is a Riserva so it's been aged for at least 24 months prior to release. It is also a limited numbered quantity. I have opened bottle number 013008.
But, before I begin, an apology: It has been two weeks since I have been back from Oregon and my Oregon wine tastings and I have yet to blog the results. I beg a bit more of your forbearance, dear reader, and promise to have the reviews up soon.
Now on to this Italian Red.
Eyes: it sits with a deep plum purple in the glass and promises character.
Nose: Rich earth and jammy blackberry with a thickness of bouquet that is alluring.
Palate: Lush and Velvety! Oaky and smooth with that rich fruit acting as a foundation upon which the acids swirl and dance with smoke and wood.
Finish: as hoped for; long and swanky. Ever the slightest hint of green herb on the finish that should probably not be there but, hey, it's a-ok.
About the blend and area: Velletri is a hilltop town and commune in the province of Lazio/Latium, south of Tuscany. In 1950, seventy Velletri winegrowers joined to form a co-operative. Today the co-op has the support of over 1000 partners! The “Terre dei Volsci” is a blend of Sangiovese, Montepulciano, Cesanese, Bombino Nero, Merlot and Ciliegiolo. (hat tip to this site for the info). The blend and the oak aging gives the wine a depth that is wonderful and a smoothness that is delightful and (almost too) easy to drink.
About the unique bottle shape, I was able to find this:
The bottle has a strange shape. The guy doing the demos said the crooked neck was to keep sediment out of the glass. There is also a dimple in the back of the bottle. Rumor has it that this was an imperfection in the original bottles. The first vintage, the town was so poor that they had to bottle the wine in the faulty bottles just to keep from going under. It turned out that it was their best-selling vintage of all time, so they kept the dimple in the back for good luck. There is another rumor that the girlfriend or wife of the wine maker had a dimple in her lower back, so they made the wine to look like her -- but with tiny sediment-catching boobs.(from here - scroll down)
The story works for me and it makes a wonderful tale with which to regale guests sharing this wine with you.
This is a wonderful group wine for dinner parties or semi-formal or business casual get-togethers. And if that is not what wine is for, then why bother? Raise a glass.