Tangy Tastes of Tuscany

Tangy Tastes of Tuscany

A dashing white from Italy's Ornellaia Estate

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Two of Bolgheri’s greatest reds, Ornellaia and Masseto share their cellar with a dashing white? Not everyone knows that the Ornellaia Estate, on Tuscany’s wind-swept west coast, has produced Poggio Alle Gazze since 1995. Although the makeup of this exciting wine has evolved over the decades, it has always been a Sauvignon Blanc-based white. The addition of Viognier and Vermentino give it body and a certain saline briskness. It adds up to a polished, meticulously vibrant white that sits alongside those fabulous reds very comfortably indeed.

2016 Poggio Alle Gazze Dell’Ornellaia $75 srp

A light, golden yellow in color. High intensity floral, grassy and citrus scents jump out at you, with elements of honeydew, honeysuckle and gun smoke. There’s an ocean “tang” as well that encourages sipping. The mouth texture is caressingly creamy yet zesty with melon, lemon-lime and a slightly honeyed profile overall. This is a poised, mineral-laden wine which is beautifully framed and long on the palate. Try with scallops, herbed poultry or a creamy pasta dish. (80% Sauvignon Blanc, 10% Viognier and 10% Vermentino) Drink now-2021.

92/100 points

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Arturo Ciompi
Trained as a classical clarinetist and conductor, Arturo plied his trade for many years in New York, performing with the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, New York City Opera, the American Symphony and countless chamber music groups. While living in Durham, Arturo became the wine manager at two iconic gourmet stores: Fowler’s in Durham and Southern Season in Chapel Hill. He had a wine spot on NPR in the ’90s and has been a continuously published wine journalist since 1997. He has won national awards for his work and is currently writing for Durham Magazine and its weekly blog, “Wine Wednesdays”. In addition, he loves teaching the clarinet. Read more on his website.