Paternoster, Basilicata

2001 Rotondo, Aglianico del Vulture, Paternoster, Basilicata

Aglianico could very well be poised to join nebbiolo and sangiovese as Italy’s most noble vines. Importer Jens Schmidt is extremely excited by this variety which has produced some spectacular wines in Campania and Basilicata. He is convinced that when the vintage 2003 wines from this variety are released that there will be no doubters left.

Fortunately you don’t have to wait for that release to taste the exceptional potential that wines from Aglianico can reach when paired with an passionate winemaker. Paternoster has been proving for years that Aglianico is a great varietal and their current releases are all outstanding wines each showing great character and depth.

The single vineyard 2001 Rotondo ($40) is a perfect wine to introduce you to the rich pleasures offered by this varietal. It is a brilliant deeply colored ruby with with hints of purple. The bouquet is expansive, rich and complicated. The dramatic flavors fill the mouth with ripe raspberry, tar and warm black licorice. The finish is almost unending. The tannins are substantial, but are well integrated and help to carry the concentrated flavors. While it is made with a modern touch none of the character of the vine or vineyard is sacrificed. Paternoster is making Aglianico that competes with Barolo and Brunello in complexity and refinement. These are very serious wines.

A Jens Schmidt Selection: Imported by Montecastelli Selections