The Inside Story from Italian Wine Merchants

Expert Picks: François Gay and Fiorano

Posted on | September 10, 2015 | Written by Will Di Nunzio | No Comments

will expertLast week, I had the pleasure of hosting one our longtime clients and his family for a dinner. After some bubbly and a little tour of the cellar, we sat down and enjoyed Chef Mike Marcelli’s amazing food—from his never-ending antipasti to the Waygu sirloin, it was all just an incredible meal. Of course, the wines were just glorious, and the two that stood out for me in particular were the François Gay Aloxe Corton 2013 and the Fiorano Sémillon N 42 1987. While very different, these two wines were exceptional in their own.

François Gay Aloxe-Corton 2013 $59.99

This little estate on the north face of the Côte de Beaune is run by François Gay, a man who seems to really care less about status and prestige. François makes great wine, and all he wants to do is make his wines the best he possibly can. Interestingly enough, he has no premier cru vineyards, although all of his vines grow in premier cru locations, meaning that his wines carry all the quality of this AOC level without the price. This Aloxe-Corton should be twice the price at least. Light, elegant, silky and a wine you can drink all night, this 2013 Aloxe-Corton is a magical little bottle of wine for any occasion.

Fiorano 1987 No. 42 Sémillon $149.00

The story of Fiorano is now well known, and this bottle is a cult wine that you would be hard pressed to get your hands on. Fortunately for everyone, Sergio Esposito, IWM’s founder, was able to get an incredible allocation many years ago, so our cellars are one of the guardians of this estate’s odd, astounding, and impossible wines. Why impossible? There are not many wines in the world—white wines that is—that show the way this 1987 does. That night, we opened an ‘88 and an ‘87 side by side. While the ‘88 showed great notes of nutmeg and almonds, some earth and port-like aromas, it was a little tired. The ’87, however, was brilliant, clear, bright and fresh. As we tasted this wine, we couldn’t believe what our heads were whispering to us. “This is a 1987?” we kept asking. It didn’t make sense; it was impossible. That is Fiorano at work—an unbelievable experience.

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