Tenuta Terre Nobili ‘Cariglio’
Magliocco Dolce 50% + Magliocco Canino 50%
Montalto Uffugo, Calabria 2017
*This wine is one of four featured in our January Italian Wine Club, hence the 3G notes below. Enjoy!
GRAPE: MAGLIOCCO DOLCE – It’s only been recently understood that Magliocco Dolce is not at all related to the other Maglioccos. Seems obvious now, as they look nothing alike in the vineyard and taste completely different as well. In Italy, however, you just can’t assume anything with grape varietals. Magliocco Dolce is often just referred to as plain Magliocco but it is also known as Greco Nero, Arvino and even Guarnaccia (which is super confusing.) It can be as equally aromatic as it is tannic, but the more talented growers have learned to find the sweet spot- achieving ripeness without hard astringency.
GROWER: Lidia Matera is the type of hostess you can’t help but to be charmed by. Her small wine farm is based in the Valle del Crati, a small bowl-shaped valley in the northern part of Calabria where summer temperatures can often top out above 100 degrees and the sun is shining constantly. Her organically grown fruit therefore matures at a high level of ripeness producing impressively big wines, yet she still finds a way to achieve balance. Fervent work amongst the vines is paramount for her grape yields, and therefore quality, and would very quickly spin out of control without constant attention and the thinning out of aggressive crops.
GLASS: We start with plump and juicy aromatics, like you’re about to stuff your face into a bowl of fresh boysenberries. The smell is also quite confectionery-esque (perhaps because it was a favorite of mine for a short time in my childhood, but can you close your eyes and picture cracking open a brand new pouch of grape flavored Big League Chew? Ah yes, the hilarity of eighties candies.) Thankfully the wine itself is far more exciting; still a mouth full of ripe boysenberries for sure, combined with violets, black tea, juniper and licorice, creating a concentrated and intoxicatingly layered lasting impression. There are also notes of (the sweeter side of) deliciously earthy red beets- a lovely, but admittedly rare and wonderful flavor in wine. Throw some bittersweet chocolate and prunes into that beet salad and now we’re really getting somewhere super fun with this wine.
SIDE NOTES: Pretty straight forward label showing some Calabrian pride with the historical map. No mention of grape varieties nor of a locale other than ‘Calabrian Red Wine.’ The name Cariglio is a ‘fantasy name’ for this particular wine (as opposed to one that sees oak, or is a different blend of grapes, for example.) Use the largest roundest glasses you have, then get your nose in deep and inhale until you’re weak in the knees. You may also notice it is unusually high in alcohol (at 15.5%.)