Eric Guido

Location: Ridgewood, NY

Food and Wine Writer for Snooth Media, Chef, Musician, Poet, Wine Lover, and Workaholic. Owner, Chef and Writer for The V.I.P. Table.

My top 5 picks from Vinitaly N.Y.C. 2012

If you love Italian wine, then you must know of Vinitaly. Vinitaly is a tasting to beat all tastings that takes place in Verona, Italy each year. For days, the entire city becomes a meca for Italian wines. Every shop, every Trattoria and every parking space is filled with wine lovers, journalists and industry people who are in town to sample the thousands of wines that are available. 

Last year, I was very happy to hear that Vinitaly had decided to start a tasting tour with stops in a number of major cities, and that New York was one of them. There may not be thousands of wines to taste, but it’s still done in style. With producers from around Italy, some are staple names, but many are still unknown in the United States. This always provides a great opportunity to discover new wines and producers. 

And that's exactly what I was able to do this year. From the obscure Rabosa grape in Verona, to Sagrantino and even a taste of the stunning 2008 Elio Grasso Gavarini Vigna Chiniera. This year's Vinitaly event was a joy to attend. I've narrowed down my tasting notes to my top five. These aren't necessarily my top scoring wines, as much as they are the most exciting wines I tasted that day. There's something here for everyone. 

Rank Wine Rating Price
1 J. Hofstätter Pinot Bianco Alto Adige Südtirol (2011)
Comments: The nose showed under ripe peach, hints of citrus and spring floral notes. On the palate, it was fresh and vibrant with a hint of sweetness and flavors of green apple, sweet spice and inner floral notes. The refreshing finish had a spritz of citrus and remained enjoyable throughout.
Average price: $19.69 from 1 store
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2 Tenimenti Luigi d'Alessandro Syrah Cortona Migliara (2008)
Comments: The nose was intense with mixed berries and spice, dark chocolate and earthy herbal notes. On the palate, it was aggressive with its concentrated red and black fruits, pepper and teaming acidity that kept it fresh and lively. The finish was long and palate-coating, showing a glimpse of this wine’s structure as the fruit slowly melted away. The Syrah Migliara gave me hope for Italian Syrah.
Previously available for $58.40
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3 Concilio Sauvignon Blanc Trentino Arjent (2011)
Comments: The nose was striking with aromas of fresh-squeezed lemon, floral perfume and stony minerals. On the palate, it started soft and enveloping yet quickly turned clean and focused as flavors of lemon zest and granny smith apple filled the senses. The finish was lingering yet mouthwatering with lemon and floral notes. This was a great example of Sauvignon Blanc from a northern climate.
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4 Cesari Amarone Della Valpolicella Bosan (2004)
Comments: The nose showed black cherries with dark chocolate-covered raisins and a hint of ripe banana. It flowed like velvet across the palate with great balance and flavors of black cherry and bitters that lasted into the long fruity finish.
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5 Grüner Veltliner Jurtschitsch Kamptal Loiserberg (2012)
Comments: The nose was reminiscent of summer days with watermelons, fresh sliced apples and floral undergrowth. On the palate, a refreshing wave of fruits washed over the senses with a hint of sweetness and a perfect dose of refreshing acidity. The hardest thing about tasting this wine is that I just wanted to keep drinking it.
Average price: $14.92 from 25 stores
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