Monte di Grazia Campania Bianco 2009
Enjoying a vintage New York City vibe we pass through Washington Square, meander into the West Village then SoHo, making our way down to Chambers Street Wine shop where I am lucky enough to meet Marco Melzi at the tasting table.
[ I can’t recall ever having mentioned a retail wine shop on this blog before, but I have consistently found so many outstanding, unique wines at Chambers Street Wines that I think they deserve the plug 😉 ]
Marco introduced me to Monte di Grazia Campania Bianco 2009, a wine of character, unpretentious generosity and distinction.
The estate of Monte di Grazia is perched high above the Amalfi coast of Italy’s Campania in Tramonti, founded in 2004 by local physician Dr. Alfonso Arpino who has taken over the family vineyards.
Monte di Grazia lays claim to ancient vines and ungrafted rootstock – apparently unaffected by the great wine blight phylloxera – some more than a century old and producing naturally low yields.
The estate has approximately 2.5 hectares under vine in 4 or 5 vineyards situated in terraced terrain with soil of clay, sand and volcanic rock fragments.
Monte di Grazia Campania Bianco is produced from Pepella – whose clusters include only a few large grapes among many small ones – along with varietals Ginestra and Bianca Tenera. Vines are cultivated organically, grapes hand-harvested into crates. The wine is fermented and aged in stainless steel.
Tasting Notes / Impressions:
Luminous yellow-gold color with streaks of emerald, striking clarity. A cheery, upbeat nose opens with generous scents of lemon peel, pear, mandarin orange, hints of musk and rock, traces of hazelnut. On the palate, the wine shows the smooth power and lean muscularity you associate with an Olympic swimmer. Finishes with delicious, subtlely bitter recollections of citrus, nuances of wild herbs and licorice. An arrestingly soulful, unique wine.
Food Pairing Suggestions:
We loved this wine paired with wild caught calamari; boiled potatoes dressed with olive oil, sun-dried tomato and capers; mixed salad greens with hard boiled egg and avocado.
Left open in the refrigerator, Monte di Grazia Campania Bianco the next night drank with unwavering personality and flavor … we enjoyed it again with fresh home-made spring rolls.
I imagine this wine as being totally delicious with room temperature whole wheat pasta, mozzarella, sun dried tomato, fresh basil, tossed in balsamic vinaigrette. Oh well, next time 🙂
Related posts: Verdicchio Meets Chun Juan
See the grand trunks of the Monte di Grazia vines in a slideshow on the estate’s website.