Category Archives: Italy

Face your wine fears! Discover the Vulture!

2007 Cantina Di Venosa Terre Di Orazio, Aglianico del Vulture, Italy LCBO# 247494 $17.95

I have to admit, when it comes to my “wine related” comfort level, Italian wine has forever been my Achilles heel. I have always been slightly intimidated by the vast range of wine produced by this vino loving country. The sheer number of oddly named indigenous grapes being produced in the countless number of tiny (and often obscure) wine producing regions could boggle the mind! My advice, when it comes to wine, play to your weaknesses. Face the unknown and take a flier on a wine from a place that you might not be familiar with. This week’s wine is just that…a wine from region outside my comfort zone. Seriously, what is the worst that could happen? You might just discover a wine that surprises you.

The 2007 Cantina Di Venosa Terre Di Orazio a very food friendly red wine made 100% from the Aglianico grape. It has flavours of violets, cassis, black cherries and well integrated hints of oak, smoke and dark chocolate. The tannins are very smooth and help to bring the wine together. The Cantina Di Venosa Terre Di Orazio is drinking well right now, but will develop very nicely over the next 5 years.

This is 100% a pasta wine. I would recommend pairing the Cantina Di Venosa Terre Di Orazio with any tomato sauce based pasta. If you wanted to go meat, I would put it with grilled lamb chops or a roasted chicken. As for cheese, I would recommend trying it with a Pecorino.

This wine is a great discovery! At $17.95, this is not only a great value, but it has all the markings of being a solid everyday drinking wine. I strongly encourage you to seek out this wine and buy a bunch of bottles. Drink one tonight, drink a few through this fall and winter and “re-discover” the rest in a few years. Who said “discovery” doesn’t pay dividends…but that’s just my opinion. Let me know what you think by commenting below. If you’re not following me yet on Twitter, you can find me at


Posted by on July 25, 2011 in Aglianico, Italy, Red Wine



2000 Quintarelli Valpolicella Classico Superiore, Veneto, Italy $89.95 LCBO# 986117

This is a huge week for “Adam’s Wine of the Week”. This marks the one-year mark of writing my weekly wine reviews. Truth be told, I started “Adam’s Wine of the Week” on a whim. I mean, if I really had a plan for domination of the wine world I probably would have named the group something a lot cooler than “Adam’s Wine of the Week”.

To celebrate this milestone, a good friend and his wife brought over a very special red from Italy’s Veneto region, a 2000 Valpolicella Classico Superiore made by Giuseppe Quintarelli. Affectionately known as “The Master of the Veneto”, Giuseppe Quintarelli is undoubtedly one of the best winemakers in the world. His 2000 Valpolicella Classico Superiore is a lesson in how a great wine should be made. This wine has powerful flavours of red berries, plums, raisins, tobacco, and wet earth all wound together giving it an elegant complexity. I would recommend pairing this wine with a wild duck (Look…if you can afford to open a bottle of wine this expensive, then it probably isn’t the first time you have had wild duck). As for cheese, I would recommend trying it with a pecorino.

At $89.95, this wine isn’t cheap, but quite honestly most of the best things in life aren’t. I am not going to tell you to run out and get this bottle of wine, but if you are celebrating something big, it doesn’t get much better than this…but that’s just my opinion. Let me know what you think.

Leave a comment

Posted by on June 8, 2009 in Italy, Red Wine


Another sweet fizzy for summer

2007 Cristina Ascheri, Moscato d’Asti, Piedmont, Italy $17.95 LCBO #746479

So picture this. As the long weekend quickly slips away, I am sitting in the backyard under a clear blue sky sipping this week’s Wine of the Week. I am totally convinced that this is the only way to enjoy this week’s wine. The 2007 Cristina Ascheri Moscato d’Asti is a slightly sparkling classic Italian white that you need to try.

This sweet fizzy white is jam packed with flavours of citrus and floral notes with a beautiful lychee finish. In the immortal words of Frank the Tank, “once it hits your lips, it’s so good!” The Cristina Ascheri Moscato d’Asti make a perfect aperitif or can be paired with a wide range of desserts (except for chocolate). As for cheese, I would recommend trying it with Gorgonzola.

The best part about this is wine is that not only is it a great deal at $17.95, but at 5.1% alcohol you can indulge and still be the consummate host. Please…Please…Please…try this wine. You won’t be disappointed…but that’s just my opinion. Let me know what you think.


Something different from Italy

2007 Teruzzi & Puthod Vernaccia di San Gimignano, Italy $15.95 LCBO #735373

I think it’s in everyone’s best interest to try something new once in a while. With so much to choose from in the world of wine, once in while could happen everyday.

My “something new” comes in the form of a crisp white wine from Italy. The 2007 Teruzzi & Puthod Vernaccia di San Gimignano is a light white wine with good acidity and flavours of citrus and slate. This would be a great aperitif or would go very well with seafood. As for cheese, I would recommend trying it with Brie or another creamy soft cheese.

At $15.95, there is no excuse not to try this wine. I think you will be pleasantly surprised by what you find. It might even inspire you to try something new again soon…but that’s just my opinion. Let me know what you think.

Leave a comment

Posted by on February 23, 2009 in Italy, Vernaccia, White Wine


A little sweet Italian fizz

2007 Patrizi Moscato d’Asti, Piedmont, Italy $14.95 LCBO #101766

I am not sure where in the world you are sitting when you read this, but here in Toronto, it seems like it won’t ever stop snowing! This week’s wine might just give you that ray of summer sunshine that you are looking for.

If you have never tried a Moscato d’Asti, you are in for sweet fizzy treat. The 2007 Patrizi Moscato d’Asti is a very slightly fizzy wine with sweet flavours of apricots and honey. For a wine with only 5.5% alcohol it has amazing acidity and length to balance out the sweetness. This is great aperitif but can be easily served with a fruit tart or biscotti. As for cheese, I would recommend trying it with Stilton or another blue-veined cheese.

At $14.95, this wine can bring a lot of happiness this winter for not a lot of money. I would strongly recommend getting out the dog sled and the snowshoes and picking up a couple of bottles of this treat…but that’s just my opinion. Let me know what you think.


A good kind of acid

2007 Maculan Pinot Grigio, Veneto, Italy $15.75 LCBO #734921

Who says Pinot Grigio is for summer time only. Certainly not me! Pinot Grigio is a refreshing wine no matter what the season. The secret x-factor of a good Pinot Grigio is its acidity. This is what makes it such a great “food” wine.

Fortunately, the 2007 Maculan has all the traits of a good Pinot Grigio. It has solid acidity and strong flavours of melon, lemon and lime. This wine is meant to be drunk young. No cellaring necessary! It is extremely versatile and pairs very well with seafood, light pastas and is perfect with cheese.

At $15.75, this wine is an excellent value. I recommend that the 2007 Maculan Pinot Grigio find a place in your home…but that’s just my opinion. Let me know what you think.

Leave a comment

Posted by on October 20, 2008 in Italy, Pinot Grigio, White Wine


Pizza wine anyone?

2006 Banfi Centine IGT, Toscana, Italy $17.95 LCBO #947440

This week I tried an amazing red wine from Italy. The reason why I like this wine so much is because of its versatility. This wine is perfect for a casual night at home with pizza and a DVD, but can rise to the occasion for a more elegant dinner party.

The 2006 Banfi Centine is the wine equivalent of a Swiss Army knife. With strong flavours of blackberries, black cherries, and a hint of spice, I would suggest that you should have several bottles on hand just in case of emergency. Not only will this wine go well with pizza (you know the good kind of pizza…not from a place where the phone number rhymes) but also pairs well with pasta in tomato sauce, grilled chicken, or even steak.

At $17.95, this is an amazing value. This is a wine that you can’t go wrong with and I strongly recommend you high tail it down to the LCBO so you can try it for yourself…but that’s just my opinion. Let me know what you think.

Leave a comment

Posted by on September 15, 2008 in Italy, Red Wine, Sangiovese

%d bloggers like this: