Planeta High Fashion

Francesca Planeta featured in Times fashion magazine

We, the ever-fashion-conscious at Vino, were thrilled to see Francesca Planeta (pictured right) in last Sunday’s T Style Magazine “Vintage Chic” article. Her wines are as fashionable as her high style and her family’s business. To order Planeta’s ground-breaking Chardonnay (a wine that helped to put Sicilia on the map as a producer of world-class wine), click here (20% discount online only). For its worldly Merlot, please click here.

Upcoming Events at Vino

Tues., Nov. 7
Il Poggione Brunello di Montalcino Tasting
Winemaker Alessandro Bindocci will pour current vintages of his Rosso di Montalcino and Brunello.
FREE 5:30-7:30 p.m. @ Vino
to register, please email

Weds., Nov. 8
Grappa and Digestivi Class
Jim Hutchinson leads a demonstration on how to make infused grappas. The tasting will include grappas and digestivi.
$75 6:30 p.m. @ Vinoteca
to register, please email

Thurs., Nov. 9
Ronco dei Tassi (Friuli) Tasting
Winemaker Enrico Coser will pour current vintages of his award-winning wines.
FREE 5:30-7:30 p.m. @ Vino
to register, please email

Fri. & Sat., November 10-11
Brunello Tasting
FREE 5:30-7:30 p.m. @ Vino
The wines are available at a 10% discount all week in-store.

See the Tasting Notes below for more information on the sale.

To register, please email

for information on these or any other events at Vino and/or I Trulli, please email

Next week at Vino:
Winemakers Marcello Bucci (Collemattoni) and Fabio Giannetti (Fornace) pour their Brunello on Thurs., Nov. 16.

* * *
This Week’s Tasting: Brunello di Montalcino

This week’s tastings feature the wines of Montalcino: receive 20% off this week at or come in to the store on Fri. and/or Sat. to taste them (10% off in-store all week).

This Thursday and Friday, 5:30-7:30 p.m.
121 East 27th St.
between Park and Lex.


$20.00 (web exclusive)

The Castelli Martinozzi estate is located in Santa Restituta at some of the highest altitudes in the appellation. The elevation allows the grapes to ripen slowly as they are cooled during the evening even as temperatures rise in summer. Proximity to the seaside created ventilation and thus reduces the risk of mildew.

Martinozzi uses no barrique (new oak) for his Rosso di Montalcino. The resulting wine is everything that a wine from Montalcino should be: earth + sun + grapes = wine.


$51.20 (web exclusive)

Martinozzi uses no barrique for the aging of this wine. The wine ages in large, traditional old-oak barrels. The resulting wine is one of the best traditional-style Brunellos to come from the appellation.


$73.60 (web exclusive)

Martinozzi uses gentle oak aging for this Riserva which he only makes in superior years.


$46.40 (web exclusive)

Donatella Cinelli Colombini is one of Italian wine’s most noted and notable women winemakers. From her Prime Donne literary prize to her acclaimed Brunello di Montalcino, whatever she does, she does so with style and verve. In a country where women winemakers have had to struggle to make a name for themselves, she emerged early on as a leading producer of Brunello, making a subtly modern Brunello that is greatly enjoyed on both sides of the Atlantic. She is also the founder of the ground-breaking Women of Italian Wine association.

(click here to order)

$48.00 (web exclusive)

La Fornace is a small family-run estate in the heart of the Brunello di Montalcino appellation. The estate makes extremely limited amounts of wine using grapes grown exclusively in estate-owned vineyards. By limiting production, the winemaker can supervise every aspect of the process. The resulting wine is an artisanal product that reflects the essence of viticulture in Montalcino. The 2000 vintage for this wine was one of the highest rated in recent memory.

Limited supply!!!

Please note that these offers cannot be combined with any other offer or discount.

* * *

Wine Opinion: Only One Grappa After Dinner

Ever since I appeared in Men’s Vogue, where I was interviewed by Lawrence Osborne on Grappa, people have been asking my opinions on grappa and distillates. (The video of our conversation should be posted soon on the magazine’s website.)

Many years ago, when I first went to Italy, after lunch, they came around with the grappa cart. It was late in the afternoon and the waiter left the grappa cart and said, “Help yourself.” In the interest of research, and trying to find which were the best grappas, I, of course, tasted all of them. Going back to the hotel, Michele was laughing hysterically because I was holding on to the railing of the building (we were in Firenze at the time). The only thing that kept me upright were the walls of the building. Block after block Michele kept on whispering the same thing in my ear: “As the man told you, ‘Only one grappa after dinner.'”

I have always heeded those words since.

The Italians drink grappa as a digestivo, in other words, a drink that helps them to digest after a heavy meal. For the most part, they only drink it after dinner. Grappa is made from what is called the vinacce in Italian, what we call the pomace in English: the skins and the pulp of the fruit left over after the grapes have been pressed to make wine. This juice is distilled using the bagno maria method, in other words, a double-boiler distillation system. The one thing that one can say about grappa is that if it’s good grappa, it always tastes like grappa. Some producers age the grappa in wood for many years and this gives it a much smoother taste along the lines of cognac.

After dinner, the Italians also drink such digestivi like amaro such as Averna, Ramazzotti, Montenegro, and one of my favorites, the amaro by the famous grappa-distilling Nonino family in Friuli. The word amaro literally means “bitter”: amaros can range in flavor from semi-sweet to very, very bitter, as in the case of Fernet-Branca. Most amaros are made from herbs, spices, and “secret ingredients,” and in the case of Cynar, it is made from artichokes.

At home, many Italians “flavor” their grappas by infusing them with different types of fruits and herbs. For example, rue, cinnamon, or chamomile, or oranges, lemons, cherries, figs… The list goes on and on.

At tomorrow night’s grappa and digestivi class, Vino’s Operations Manager Jim Hutchinson (of Philadelphia) will be leading the group in infusing, tasting, and bottling grappa: this is a great holiday gift idea and, indeed, many in Italy give home-infused grappas as gifts during the holiday season.
–Charles Scicolone, Wine Director, I Trulli and Vino

To register for tomorrow night’s Grappa and Digestivi class, please email

Look for Charles’ picture in our New York Times ad tomorrow!


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