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Piedmont for dinner and for future birthdays, from Ferdinando Principiano

Three red wines from Piedmont

Trends come and go. Food-wise there was a time when chefs held tight reins and two asparaguses in a cross in the middle of a giant plate was the main attraction. A few decades later, the quest is instead rustic and decorative leaves are placed only reluctantly on plates of varying size and decor.

In the wine world, it is the same.

If you try to find out more about Ferdinando Principiano, it turns out that the family in the nineties tried to cater to a wide audience with immediate appeal. In the early 00s, the orientation had changed considerably and the winemaking had returned to a more traditional production. No added yeast, clinically pure in the wine cellar and a very restrained use of sulphur. The producer prefers organic farming but is not certified. Fining and filtering are not done.

Caviste.se is an internet retailer that offered Ferdinando Principiano wines in 2015, 2016, 2017 and now also in 2018. The launch this year includes three red wines in a box of six bottles as follows.

Principiano wines, Piedmont

Principiano wines, Piedmont, copyright SO Johansson

Dolcetto d’Alba Sant Anna 2017, Ferdinando Principiano

100% Dolcetto from the area of Sant Anna.

Delicious herbaceous and with fresh spices. Light red berries, violet candy, hint of liquorice. Feather-light impression. In the mouth a light body, modest tannins, cool and clean feeling with moderate acidity. Young yes, but it is very accessible and ready already.

If I would have the choice, I’d serve it chilled to friends while we prepared food and possibly nibbled on some little snack.

Laura 2016 Barbera d’Alba, Ferdinando Principiano

100% Barbera grown in Bosareto and Sant Anna.

A strong first impression of fruit. Violet, dark red berries, clean but more robust and compact than elegant. The mouthfeel gives an immediate longing for food. Solid body, warmth and a long and good grip. Young, but the tannins are not too aggressive even though the wine itself is a bit edgy and certainly will benefit from being forgotten in the cellar for a year or two. Some liquorice and violet tones in a very appealing combination, but I’d rather call it masculine than perfumed.

Principiano wines, Piedmont

Principiano wines, Piedmont, copyright SO Johansson

Barolo 2014 Serralunga d’Alba, Ferdinando Principiano

100% Nebbiolo from Serralunga dAlba and 50 year old vines.

With quick sniff, I find nail polish, bright red style and a delicious lightness. A very beautiful and clear nose without sprawling elements. Some muted dark red berries and possibly a pinch of tar. On the palate, it has a royal bite and awesome sandy tannins and a very long aftertaste. Finely balanced acidity. With preconceived ideas, one would say “put in the cellar” but if I get some meat and something fatty, I’d like to drink it right now. We were served straight out of the bottle but I guess something as simple as a couple of hours in a carafe would create a tangible added value.

When you read that they are not doing any fining and filtering, you start to look for traces of precipitation. The glass exhibited the opposite, with beautifully clear, bright red colours. Not because it really has anything to do with the taste but both nice brilliant liquid and the label are details that contribute to a whole. Overall, the wines give a well-made, polished and beautiful impression and I fully understand that it is a recurring feature of Caviste’s launches.

More info at caviste.se from October 25.

Sven-Olof Johansson is a wine enthusiast in Stockholm with a long history of wine tasting experience.

This post is also available in: Swedish

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