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1 an umbrian vineyard landscape shows the mixed biodiversity that still prevails here copy

Umbria: Taking It to the Next Level

Italy: Center & South, featured

Eric Guido, Nov 2022

Umbrian wines have always communicated tremendous potential; however, except for a short list of producers, these wines have often been underwhelming. I have long looked forward to the day the region would begin to deliver the best quality possible. That day may be just over the horizon.

Looking east from le terrazze with the adriatic coast in sight copy

The Unrealized Potential of Marche

Italy: Center & South, featured

Eric Guido, Nov 2022

Overall quality in Marche has never been higher. However, my feeling is that many producers have yet to fully realize the potential of this diverse region. I often left my tastings this year wondering what red and white varieties might be able to achieve here.

The hilly landscape of torano nuovo and pepe's old vine trebbiano azruzzese in the distance copy

Decoding Emidio Pepe: 13 Vintages of Montepulciano d’Abruzzo Vecchie Vigne

Verticals & Retrospectives, Italy: Center & South, featured

Eric Guido, Oct 2022

Steeped in tradition, rare, certainly not inexpensive and sometimes earthy to the point of being rustic…to sum it up: intimidating. That’s what comes to mind for many consumers when they think of approaching an older bottle of Emidio Pepe Montepulciano d’Abruzzo. Over the last six decades, these have been among the most distinctive wines made in Italy. Today, the current generation focuses on the future without taking away from their family’s glorious past.

Pian dell'orino experimental %e2%80%9cvite maritata%e2%80%9d or married vine system copy

The Rise of Rosso di Montalcino

Italy: Tuscany, featured

Eric Guido, Oct 2022

Rosso di Montalcino used to be the catch-all category for producers to generate cash quickly or soak up fruit from younger vineyards before the vines reached maturity. Today, things are changing very quickly. There’s a new focus on the Rosso category, the result of a need to satisfy a younger generation that doesn’t want to wait 10 to 20 years for Brunello to age, as well as the realization that it is increasingly difficult to make balanced, long-aging wines in these recent torrid vintages.

Looking out toward loreto aprutino and cugnoli from above the mountain side town of corvara copy

Abruzzo: The Great Divide

Italy: Center & South, featured

Eric Guido, Oct 2022

Producers in Abruzzo are divided and struggling. The most ambitious feel undervalued as they compete against bulk production and supermarket wines that bear the Montepulciano DOC. Climate change is another real challenge. The good news is that this remains a buyer’s market, with a growing number of fantastic wines that are being produced at price points that are nearly impossible to beat throughout the rest of Italy.

The ginestra vineyards on the foothills of mount vulture copy

Basilicata: Vulture’s Rise from the Ashes

Italy: Center & South, featured

Eric Guido, Sep 2022

For many years now, a core of passion- and quality-driven producers have been working hard to prove that Vulture deserves its place on the world’s stage. While many hurdles remain, I wholeheartedly believe that Vulture is very much on its way.

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Cellar Favorite: 2018 Quilceda Creek Cabernet Sauvignon

cellar favorite, Cellar Favorites, United States: Washington

Eric Guido, Sep 2022

There are very few wines that I personally seek out year after year. For a wine to become a recurring purchase for my cellar, it takes a proven track record, unparalleled quality among. peers, vintage-to-vintage consistency and. relative value. The Quilceda Creek Cabernet Sauvignon is such a wine, even with steady price increase over the past ten years.

Mount etna's red just keep getting better and better copy

Sicily: Welcome to the Revolution

Italy: Center & South, featured

Eric Guido, Jun 2022

Sicily is hot, and I don’t mean temperature-wise. A significant rise in quality across the island, not just from Etna, has finally broken down many of the old stereotypes that once plagued the producers here. Today we are witnessing a focus on variety and place that has seldom been seen from Sicilian winemakers, and the results come through in the bottle. That said, there’s still an ocean of wine to sort through to find the best.

A number of standouts from my recent valle d'aosta tastings copy

A Valle d’Aosta Interlude

featured, Italy: North

Eric Guido, Jun 2022

Italian by definition, yet more influenced by French and Swiss neighbors, Valle d’Aosta is quite unique relative to other regions in Italy. It’s precisely that diversity that makes Valle d’Aosta both fun and intriguing to explore.

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Trentino & Alto Adige: The Sky’s the Limit

featured, Italy: North

Eric Guido, Jun 2022

Trentino and Alto Adige appear to be on the cusp of grasping unheralded potential. For many years, a microcosm of cooperatives and growers, both large and small-scaled, have been turning out some of the best white wines in Italy, but they were the exception, not the rule. However, through a renewed sense of place, a focus on purity and, in some cases, the effects of global warming, that number is steadily increasing.