B-21 Top Recommendation
What better way to begin a collection of the best values in Italian drinkers than with a Montepulciano/Aglianico blend from the maestro himself, Riccardo Cotarella? From a single vineyard called Ramitello, planted 50 years ago on the historic estate of the Marquis Norante of Santa Cristina in Molise, Ramitello Rosso justifies this estate's cult-like following. Perfectly complementing Cotarella's gem is another cult classic, Tua Rita. Rita Tua and her husband, Virgilio Bisti, secured 40 acres of land in 1984, in medieval Suvereto, the Tuscan province of Livorno. Luca d'Attoma joined as winemaker; the rest is history. Rosso dei Notri – half Sangiovese, the balance equal parts Cab, Merlot and Syrah – does double duty as a smokin' value as well as ambassador for the thrilling 2015 vintage. Quietly gaining superstar status in Apulia, Sebastiano de Corato bottles a jaw dropping Aglianico, dubbed Rivera. Marco Bernabei brings his magic to Sebastiano's old-vine site; the duo unmatched anywhere in the zone. Finally, Le Casematte Peloro Terre Siciliane, a 70% Nerello Mascalese, 30% Nocera blend from 30 year old vines planted high above the Strait of Messina in the northeast corner of Sicily. Brambly, black fruited and spices for days, this is why we love the Island, oh so much.