WINE OF THE MONTH- FEBRUARY

It has been a recurring theme in this feature to seek out great Italian table wines, especially in the winter when I tend to fire up the stove and churn out hearty Italian cuisine. Wines from this area of the world have become somewhat saturated, and if you don’t know what you are doing, you can end up with a pretty subpar bottle in the lower end of the price scale. Luckily, there is an abundance of solid producers from this great country still making affordable table wines that provide some of the best value for the dollar in all the world, and you’d be hard pressed to find better wines to pair with food than those based with Sangiovese. So, instead of dropping $150 on a bottle of the famous Testammata Blend from Bibi Graetz, seek out the Casamatta table wine for less than a tenth of the price. You can essentially buy a case of the table wine for a price equal to buying a single bottle of the higher level offering. In the case of the 2011 vintage, this an easy decision.

SetWidth155-BB-NV-Casamatta-Rosso-Bottle-PP

Bibi Graetz Toscana Casamatta Rosso 2011, 89 Points, $12, 6000 Cases Imported- Ripe red cherry and licorice on the nose. There’s an impressive rustic note up front on the palate, as wet stone mineral, cigar box and loam intertwine with fresh, ripe cherry, licorice and plum fruit, finishing with a subtle note of graphite and spicy tobacco earth.

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