The quote from T.S. Elliot perfectly sums up for me, my feelings and impressions about my latest epicurean adventure in Italy. It was wonderful trip, one from which I had just returned late last night. A good deal of it was spent in Umbria and Campania.
I had the good fortune to hang out with some of the very best food and wine writers [bloggers] in the U.S.; together we sampled through some of the best wines being produced in the world. I don't say that lightly either, as I've always maintained, you can pay more, but you won't always get more. The following sentiment also bears repeating; the wines of Campania are a mere question mark in the minds of far too many vinosapiens, who just don't know enough about the bounty of varietals which abide there. With that said, hopefully this review will change that, shining a bright lamp on the unsung hero of the Italian wine scene.
Frankly, I was guilty of not fully knowing about the many splendid wines from this region as well, but if this experience has taught me one thing, never stop exploring. One thing further, don't just come to a new land as a tourist, become a traveler, that's right drill deep down into the bedrock of the place you visit, soak it in and never let it go, grow from it, I'm pretty sure I did. I am thrilled I got the invitation to explore this great spot in Italy.
It was on Day two of the Wine Blogger/Media Fam Trip that our group spent the afternoon with Arnaldo Caprai Winery. A winery that produces wines with a soul, capable of evoking memories of a romp through the Umbrian countryside. Wow, these folks really get it, their [enoteca] tasting room open 7 days a week,
making it great place to get acquainted with their wines. It's not only warm and inviting, but is social media savvy. The wines here, are in a word, wow! I was really impressed and quite taken with each wine we tasted.
If you're keeping score and I know most of you do; then you will be delighted to know that many of the "scores" on the wines they produce average well above the 90 point plateau from varied wine reporting sources. They have become a champion of the Sagrantino grape in Montefalco, and punctuating that success is their Sagrantino di Montefalco 25 Anni Caprai, bottled poetry. A big thanks to our host for the afternoon, Mr. Marco Caprai whose hospitality and generosity exceeded all my expectations.
The 2007 Sagrantino di Montefalco Collepiano DOCG: In the glass a very dark, near opaque ruby color. A wine produced from 100% Sagrantino grapes, it’s a wine built like a artfully balanced hammer. I found it sturdy, weighty, dense in feel and yet capable of both power and finesse. Each swirl and slurp; revealing ripe wild berries, smoke, underbrush, a light dusting of spice and a touch of Cuban cigar tobacco, meld, which define this wonderful example of Umbrian wine.