Friday, September 25, 5:30-7:30pm
Our featured producer tastings continue this Friday as we pour six wines by one of our most popular and versatile piemontese producers, Gianluigi Orsolani. The Caluso, Canavese and Carema DOCs might not roll off the tongue immediately, but they’re proof (were it needed) that there’s more to Piedmont’s wines than just Barolo. The Orsolani family name is synonymous with the local white variety, Erbaluce, but Gianluigi specializes in this and more: sparkling spumante, refreshing rosé and reds to rival the region’s best all form part of his stunning repertoire. On Friday afternoon taste six of Orsolani’s finest, each now available at an incredible 20% off!
Caluso Erbaluce Cuvée Tradizione 2006
was $29, now $23.20
Determined to defy Erbaluce’s declining production, Francesco Orsolani (Gianluigi’s father) created the zone’s first “Champagne method” Erbaluce in 1968. This groundbreaking wine is made from 100% Erbaluce grapes using the metodo classico, whereby the wine undergoes a second fermentation in the bottle to create its fine pinpoint bubbles, yeasty aromas and white stone-fruit flavors.
Caluso Erbaluce La Rustìa 2008
was $20, now $16
Orsolani has been making La Rustìa since 1985: while dry Erbaluce had been common in the area for years, the concept of selecting the ripest grapes from the best sites in Caluso’s trellised vineyards had not yet taken hold. The selection of such fruit would result in a wine that was richer on the palate and milder in its acidity, resulting in a fresh, balanced white. The name La Rustìa is a dialectal reference to the “roasted” slopes where the grapes are grown with an ideal exposure.
Caluso Erbaluce Vignot S. Antonio 2006
was $25, now $20
Vignot S. Antonio is 100% single-vineyard Erbaluce vinified and aged in temperature-controlled stainless steel. The wine is allowed to undergo partial malolactic fermentation while resting for up to eight months on the lees, giving the wine a weight and creaminess that sets it apart from many of its counterparts in the Caluso DOC.
Canavese Rosato Rubiconda 2008
was $15, now $12
The Orsolani name may be synonymous with local white variety Erbaluce, but in 2007 the fourth-generation producer broke with tradition. Using Nebbiolo, Barbera and Uva Rara, Orsolani created a small production of Canavese Rosato named Rubiconda. This fresh, fragrant and exquisitely dry rosato is a blend with enough structure to stand up to popular favorites like ribs, burgers and grilled chicken.
Canavese Rosso Acini Sparsi 2007
was $15, now $12
Orsolani calls this blend Acini Sparsi or “scattered grapes” because the winery sources the fruit for this Canavese from different estate-owned vineyards “scattered” across the appellation. While the Nebbiolo gives the wine structure and rich aromas, the Barbera and Uvarara help to soften the Nebbiolo’s tannin and add nice acidity, making this wine an excellent food wine at a great price.
Carema Le Tabbie 2003
was $33, now $26.40
The Carema DOC’s especially thin topsoil has led to the creation of terraced vineyards supported by monumental granite columns, which rise up dramatically into the mountains towards Valle d’Aosta. Notoriously difficult to cultivate and manage, these demanding terraces are known as “tabbie” in the local dialect. Orsolani uses smaller clones of Nebbiolo (picotener and prugnet), whose greater ratio of skin to pulp lends the wine a beautiful, rich color.
Featured producer tasting:
Friday, September 25