The Inside Story from Italian Wine Merchants

Expert Picks: De Conciliis and Barone Pizzini

Posted on | September 16, 2014 | Written by Robin Kelley OConnor | No Comments

Robin_B_8.6.14_72dpiA declared celebration is unnecessary to drink sparkling wine—this is an idea embraced by Italian wine lovers. Italians take pride in making world-class bubblies, even though they are huge consumers of the vrai Champagne of France. Influenced by the best, the Italian producers have become masters of making excellent sparkling wines, known as spumante in the Italian language. To officially bring in autumn this weekend, I have two fabulous Italian sparkling wines for you to consider: De Conciliis Selim Spumante Brut NV and Barone Pizzini Rosé Franciacorta NV.

De Conciliis Selim Spumante Brut NV $21.45

De Conciliis Selim Spumante Brut NV is a gem of a spumante made in, of all places, Campania. You might not think that the area of the Bay of Naples, Mount Vesuvio, and the Amalfi coast would be a place where you could make decent bubbles. You’d be wrong. In the hands of Bruno De Conciliis, this one-off Campania sparkler is a thing of beauty. This low production wine is made in the Charmat method from a blend of  60% Aglianico and 40% Fiano that’s creatively blended and aged in stainless steel for 100 days. This fresh and delicious wine has a wonderful nose of pears, apples, and citrus notes that follow through on the palate with refreshing intensity, hints of minerality, and a long gratifying finish.

Barone Pizzini Rosé Franciacorta NV $49.50

Clearly is at the top of its class of anything of its type made in Italy, the Barone Pizzini Rosé Franciacorta NV is a sparkler that puts Champagne on notice. The Barone Pizzini estate in Franciacorta, located in the province of Lombardia, in an idyllic setting of rolling hills in the district of Lake Iseo with an ever present view of the Alps. Franciacorta, a DOCG, is not only the name of the winemaking district but it also indicates the production method known as “metodo classico,” the same protocol used in Champagne. Made from a typical Champagne grape blend of 80% Pinot Noir and 20% Chardonnay, this wine derives from organic grapes and it has a low production of 19,200 bottles. This wine has a lovely salmon color with an aroma of raspberries, strawberries and red flowers. On the palate, it’s flavorful with loads of red fruit flavors and a long extended finish. It’s pure class.

Join Robin Kelley O’Connor as he pours the De Concillis Selim and other fine Campanian wines this Saturday, September 20, at our very special wine lunch!

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