A Wine Lover’s Weekly Guide To $10 Wines – An Abruzzi, Italy DOC Rose

Today’s inexpensive selection comes from vineyards located near Ortona, a coastal city in the Abruzzi region of central Italy. In 1582 Princess Margherita of Austria the wife of Ottavio Farnese purchased this town. The local farmers must have liked her; they called their wine Farnese. The vineyards are in the Moro River Valley near Mount Maiella and the Adriatic Sea. Montepulciano d’Abruzzo DOC is Abruzzi’s signature wine. They add the word Cerasuolo when it’s a rose. Such roses tend to be dark colored, as was this offering. The companion wine is an Israeli rose at $15, our cutoff point for moderate-priced wines.

OUR WINE REVIEW POLICY All wines that we taste and review are purchased at the full retail price.

Wine Reviewed Farnese Montepulciano Cerasuolo d’Abruzzo DOC 2010 13 % alcohol $9.

We can start by quoting the producer’s website. “Vine: Montepulciano d’Abruzzo. Production area: Ortona district. Sensory features: bright pink cherry, intense and persistent aroma, fruity with small red fruit scent (strawberry). Medium-bodied, balanced, intense and with a great persistence. We suggest to drink it young. Serving temperature: about 14-16° C. Best served with: easy to drink, good with first and second courses, white meat and cheese, good with grilled fish and fish soups.” And now for my review.

At the first sips this wine was fairly sour. It presented rather harsh acidity with some sweetness in the background. Salted pistachios rounded the wine’s acidity and stepped up its sweetness. The initial meal centered on a (boxed) baked Ziti Siciliano doused with grated Parmesan cheese. In response Monte was sweet, tasting of cherries, and had good length. But its acidity was still not all that pleasant. Dessert was frozen high-quality French-style custard pie with a buttery crust and strawberries. Now the libation thinned while it remained sour.

My next meal started with Japanese Wasabi crackers. The liquid remained sour and a bit thin. A barbecued chicken leg with paprika-dusted skin softened its acidity and brought out the strawberries. When paired with sliced vegetables in a honey-mustard vinaigrette a bit of fruit broke through. Dessert was yummy chocolate raisin and dried current cookies. Finally the wine’s acidity was pleasant and tasted of cherries.

My final meal centered on a much too spicy omelet. The libation was soft and fruity, but couldn’t put out the fire. The side dish was a commercial potato salad that rendered the wine’s acidity sour. Dessert was a homemade fruit smoothie with chocolate chips and nuts. The wine’s acidity remained sour but its fruit met the smoothie’s fruit.

When paired with a marbled cheddar cheese this wine was nicely sweet with tangy acidity. Then it met an imported Swiss (from Israel, not from Switzerland), which rendered the Cerasuolo was lighter and subtler.

Final verdict. I definitely have no intention of buying this wine again. The only exception would be for a wine and cheese tasting.

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