OK, I’ve been at this for 10 days now…I have tons of toilet paper, because I stocked up during the craze, but maybe some of the food is running a bit low and good heavens, I’ve ran out of wine! I also have lots of Lysol wipes and hand sanitizer but I certainly can’t consume those…although my house is pretty freaking clean! (As of this moment, there is not a Lysol wipe to be found ANYWHERE, and folks are making their own hand sanitizer at this point – the Everclear is flying off the shelves…) Is this YOUR lament?
With the clock ticking down to freedom, you may find yourself opening better and better bottles of wine. And why not? Life is short after all, and if this is a bottle you’ve been sitting on for awhile, you may not find a better time to open it. Who needs OTBN when you have COVID-19?? (Sorry, bad joke…OTBN stands for Open That Bottle Night – it is meant to open a great bottle of wine that you might have been saving for something special, only to have it go bad before you had good reason to open it. The premise is to NOT have a good reason, rather to just OPEN it and experience it.)
I’ve talked about Verdicchio a lot…one of Italy’s few ageable white grapes – a short list of grapes when it comes to ageability. I might just go out on a limb here and say that it’s probably my favourite Italian white grape! Be it from Jesi or Matelica, sparkling, passito or still, I like them all, and when they are aged, I like them even more!
I was introduced to Pievalta on one of my trips to Le Marche, and on the last trip, we had a session specifically of aged Verdicchio to compare, and my, oh my…talk about a mind-blowing experience. I’ve tasted back to (I think 1998) and the experience never gets “old”. I was able to taste one of their single vineyard- the San Paolo 2004 Verdicchio di Castelli di Jesi during this session, and convinced the importer (who was already bringing their wines to Canada) to bring in this extra special Verdicchio. I think it’s done extremely well for her and I’ve been able to introduce many people to Verdicchio, its beauty and ageability. I opened a bottle of the San Paolo around Christmas time when we had friends over for dinner (and blew them away, too) and decided it was time to buy another bottle. So I did, and on Day 10, it’s being opened! (For all you Vegans out there…this is certified biodynamic and vegan friendly)
Verdicchio is always fermented on the lees (the dead yeast cells) to give it texture, complexity and mouthfeel. Add age to this and it’s multiplied exponentially. Butterscotch, toasted nuts, sponge toffee, baked apples and pears is everything you will expect to find in this bottle of 2004, which in my mind, is nothing short of perfect…slight tannic structure, but all kinds of acidity to keep it fresh, and not flabby. In short, this wine is simply outstanding. Expect to pay about $55 CAD for this bottle, but well worth the price tag! If you can afford it, buy two, because for sure this bottle has a few more years of life left on it!
Just sit and drink this wine solo. Contemplate going back to work after quarantine and just enjoy it. Ruminate on life. Salute!