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Italy from South to North: Graci Rosso, Biondi-Santi Brunello, and Nicolis Valpolicella!
January 23, 2018
A Note from Sergio

When I opened Italian Wine Merchants, I had two goals in mind: bring great Italian wines to people who love them and educate people about Italian wines so they would love them too. I understand that Italian wine can feel intimidating. Italy has more than 2,000 grape varietals, more than 1,500,000 acres of vines, more than 350 official wine designations, and more than two millennia of winemaking traditions. It's a lot to hold in your head. The easiest and perhaps the only way to get to know and love wine is to drink it. However, knowing something about its history, its territorio, and its traditions doesn't hurt. A wine should taste of the land where its grapes grew, and it should taste like the people who made it love its land.

Today, I'm very proud to present three wines that could come from nowhere but Italy: Graci's lava-laden and wild 2015 Etna Rosso, Biondi-Santi's brilliant and uniquely approachable 2011 Brunello, and Nicolis' juicy yet savory Valpolicilla. Each of these wines is so wedded to its area that it nearly defines its region; each one is telling of its land, its maker, and its traditions; and each one both celebrates Italian wine and gives you lessons in it. (And all three happen to be red wines, but this is less a unifying feature than it is a coincidence.)

Hailing from Italy's North (Valpolicella in the Veneto) to its South (the slopes of Mt. Etna in Sicilia), this trio takes you on a journey through Italy, the center being Montalcino in Toscana, the home of Brunello. But this trio teaches more than just geography. The Graci Etna Rosso is indigenous Nerello Mascalese, so its roots are inextricable from Sicilia--it's an ancient wine that has only now found its glory in modernity. Nicolis' Valpolicella Classico is likewise an old, old wine, with its history stretching back to the time of the Greeks. Brunello, however, is not quite 200 years old--a relative newcomer. That said, Biondi-Santi's Il Greppo estate is its birthplace, so you can't get a more definitive bottle. These three wines are pure Italian style, and each one gives its own distinct pleasure.

Open one of these wines and taste something of Italy's great diversity and history--but most of all, share these wines with someone you love!

Today's Featured Sections Include:

1. Spotlight on Excellence:
Wild, Wonderful 2015 Graci Etna Rosso
2. Only At IWM: Luscious, Approachable 2011 Biondi-Santi Brunello
3. Time Sensitive Offer: Is This Nicolis Valpolicella Your New Go-To Red?
4. Wine Events: Upcoming January / February Wine Tasting Events

My Best,
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Sergio Esposito
Owner/Founder