Saturday, November 03, 2007

Poliziano in Montepulciano

I have been remiss in my Tuscany updates of late but without further adieu let’s take a visit to Poliziano winery in Montepulciano. We were scheduled for a tour, lunch and tasting at Poliziano and, surprise, surprise, we were on ‘Italian time’ and late for both. We called ahead to let them know we were on our way and they were more than happy to accommodate. In fact, the spunky female voice on the phone turned out to be our tour guide, Margherita, the official and uncontested “tour guide of the trip.”

Margherita had arranged for our lunch and tasting to precede the tour because — god forbid — we missed lunch. (Just another reason you gotta love the Italians!) The spread of cured meats, beautiful cheeses and a fresh and colorful salad was brought out and passed around as Margherita explained everything we were to stuff in our gullets. The procession of wines were, of course, perfectly matched to the specific meats and cheeses from the everyday Rosso and Vino Nobile to the single vineyard Vino Nobile Ausinone. We were no strangers to salty meats and cheese by this, our seventh day in Tuscany, but the Poliziano feast was somehow superior.

Margherita is studying to become a Master Sommelier and you could feel her passion for wine and knowledge as well as her eagerness to please. Her coworker had failed to show up for work so she was simultaneously working our table of laypersons and an adjacent table of importers from Czechoslovakia. The good news for us was that the Czechs failed to finish some of the “special” wine they were being served from the new vineyard in Maremma as well as their vin santo and prune tart. We were to be the happy recipients of their leftovers. "Shhhhhhh," Margherita whispered as she ushered the professionals out the door.

All the wines were outstanding. Perhaps they had an edge because we tasted them with food but no matter. I would recommend trying anything from this relatively young (1961) estate with a traditional style. The single vineyard wine came home with Vino Girl.

Poliziano Rosso Montepulciano
($12 - $15)
Montepulciano, 80% Sangiovese, 20% Merlot, 250,000 Production

Poliziano Vino Nobile Montepulciano
($25 - $30)
Montepulciano, 85% Sangiovese, 15% Colorino, Canaiolo and Merlot, 150 – 180,000 Production

Poliziano Asinone Vino Nobile Montepulciano
(NA in US but about $45 from Italy)
Montepulciano, 100% Sangiovese Only in the best years, 20 – 40,000 production

Poliziano Le Stanze
($40 - $45)
Montepulciano, 70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 20,000 production

Poliziano Mandrone di Lohsa
Maremma, 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Petit Verdot, 10% Alicante 10, 15,000 production

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