Black Chocolate di Montebello Appassimento 2018

life is too short to drink bad wine but unfortunately also not long enough to drink all the good wine (in moderation of course) but yesterday brought a beauty, courtesy of new friends in rotterdam, a complex italian wine from puglia made with four different kinds of grapes 30% primitivo 30% negroamaro 20% nero di troia and 20% merlot. it's made by a method called appassimento where the grapes are plucked (not picked) by hand at the last possible moment. the grapes are then stored in a 'frutaiou', a special kind of drying loft with openings in the sides so the wind can easily blow through.

the drying process concentrates the aromas and the fructose. the wine that results is then aged in oak for six months and for another year in the bottle. as they say here, goed bezig! i love the sometimes poetic attempts by wine tasters to describe the flavours of wine which always rely heavily on references to other flavours, like 'cherries from a paper bag', or 'shaved pears', in this case : fragrant dark plums, blueberries and black cherries with mocha and caramel, full of juicy dark fruit with coconut, vanilla and chocolate. soft and creamy and endless.

it sounds even better in dutch :

Geurige donkere pruimen, blauwe bessen en zwarte kersen met mokka en karamel. Krachtig en rijk van smaak vol sappige donkere vruchten met kokos, vanille en chocolade. Roomzacht en eindeloos lang.

it's on sale at the wijnbeurs €8 a bottle — nectar from the gods for a bit more than a euro a glass, depending on the size of the glass :)