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Coverplaneta's buonivini's vineyard in noto copy

Surpassing Expectations: New Releases from Sicily

featured, Italy: Center & South

Eric Guido, Sep 2023

It’s incredible how much Sicily has improved in such a short period. What was once a selection of hit-or-miss, over-stylized, oaky and often rustic wines has become one of my favorite annual tastings. Quality continues to rise, and prices remain fair, meaning consumers can now find some seriously world-class wines here.

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Chomping at the Bit: New Releases from Abruzzo

featured, Italy: Center & South

Eric Guido, Aug 2023

Following my visit to Abruzzo in 2022, I cited a list of issues within the region that were holding producers back. Some even toyed with the idea of leaving the DOC altogether. However, the response from the Consorzio over the last few years, while not without its own issues, has been quite positive.

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Southern Italy: Diamonds in the Rough

featured, Italy: Center & South

Eric Guido, Jul 2023

Southern Italy struggles with several issues that have prevented it from realizing its true potential. The regions of Basilicata, Calabria, Puglia, Lazio and Molise each wrestle with their own challenges, yet there are many diamonds in the rough.

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Campania: Change Is Imminent…Or Is It?

featured, Italy: Center & South

Eric Guido, Jun 2023

Even with a tremendous surge in quality, Campania’s wines have yet to win over the average consumer. A core of old and new producers is determined to change that.

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Emilia-Romagna: Opposite Ends of the Spectrum

featured, Italy: Center & South

Eric Guido, Mar 2023

While Lambrusco is still king in Emilia, over in Romagna, a few wineries are showing the heights Sangiovese can reach if treated properly. The best part is that these lesser-known wines continue to offer great value in the market.

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Umbria: Taking It to the Next Level

featured, Italy: Center & South

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.

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The Unrealized Potential of Marche

featured, Italy: Center & South

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.

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

Verticals & Retrospectives, featured, Italy: Center & South

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.

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Abruzzo: The Great Divide

featured, Italy: Center & South

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.

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Basilicata: Vulture’s Rise from the Ashes

featured, Italy: Center & South

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.