Mission Codename Hail the heel
You have got to be kidding me!
An Italian stallion of the top 2010 vintage with Tignanello and Solaia lineage for UNDER $20?!
Well, there’s a tiny catch. Italy’s a big country, Piedmont up north and Tuscany at the heart of it are the two leaders where the big players are. Those players do venture out to lesser-known regions, and this is the perfect example of that from Puglia, the heel of the boot. Somehow, we picked up this pristine stock with perfect importer-direct provenance for a song so that you, Operatives, reap the benefits. Like all of Marchesi Antinori’s Italian ventures, his venerable consultant Renzo Coteralla happens to be the genius behind this wine.
Wine Spectator back in the day reported for the 2010 vintage that “In Puglia, Francesco Domini, general manager of Tormaresca, says the vintage is characterized by two phases. Up to July it was a ‘cold’ vintage, while August and beginning of September were typical of a ‘hot’ vintage… Late-ripening varietals such as Aglianico, Cabernet Sauvignon and Negroamaro were influenced more by the hotter second half of the season. ‘The wines are characterized by a rich and complex aromatic profile, ripe tannins and lower acidity that makes them soft and rich,’ says Domini.”
Soft and rich all the way to the bank! For its age, this is still youthful, the color barely showing any garnet or bricking, with a mouthful of tannins having resolved into silky submission. There’s a streak of juiciness running through layers of cassis and earthiness, mingling with dried figs and top-notch charcuterie notes on the aromatics towards the back. As this unique varietal’s name suggests, it’s loaded with darker fruits backed by a pleasantly bitter, yet utterly loveable savory edge on the finish. How about red wine braised lamb shanks as the centerpiece? You get the drift.
When this was originally released at a $46 SRP, the intention was to show how great a value Puglia can offer when farmed and vinified with the Antinori hand and investment. More than a decade later, with some glorious bottle age – and at this ridiculous price - this has evolved into a once-in-a-lifetime red.
Oh wait, trouble is… don’t have nearly enough we fear make your move, this ain’t gonna be around for long. Don’t worry though we’re already eyeing a next wine to run, so…
Why are you still here? GO!
91 Points – Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate
“I need to make a special callout to Vito Palumbo, manager of Marchesi Antinori’s Puglia estate Tormaresca and “Mr. Puglia” in person. Few have championed the Puglia wine identity more articulately and more passionately than Vito Palumbo. Tuscany’s Antinori family invested in Puglia in 1999. This ground-breaking winery subsequently brought a wave of new investments and hot-climate winemaking technology to the boot of Italy… Vito continues to be an inspiration for the many new faces that are now blossoming in the wake of Tormaresca’s birth. The 2010 Negroamaro Masseria Maime is one of the most approachable expressions of the Puglian grape varietal on the market. It opens with a deep garnet-ruby color followed by red cherry and drying mineral notes of chalk and crushed stone. The overall effect is linear and direct with sharp contours that were not as evident in vintages of the recent past.”
Cassis, earthiness, dried figs, top-notch charcuterie
Still youthful, the color barely showing any garnet or bricking
Cassis, earthiness, dried figs, and top-notch charcuterie notes
A streak of juiciness and a mouthful of tannins in silky submission
Darker fruits backed by a pleasantly bitter, utterly loveable savory edge
Red wine braised lamb shanks as the centerpiece for starters?
What the Winery Says
2010 Masseria Maìme Salento IGT Negroamaro
- Renzo Cotarella
- 100% Negroamaro
- Salento IGT, Puglia
- Masseria Maìme
- Harvest dates
- September 20-26, 2010
- 12 months
- New and second-fill large tonneaux