Collemassari – Bolgheri Rosso 2010

During a trip to Valpolicella a few months ago, on the last day, we found ourselves having lunch on the eastern shore of Lake Garda in the village of Torri del Benaco. It’s a very touristic spot, but I doubt there’s anything that isn’t along the shores of Lake Garda at this point. Despite that, it made for a decent stroll and also offered me the chance to search out a wine shop to pick up a couple of samples of Italian wine as when you live in Spain, you don’t often find wines from anywhere else.

Down some street that I can’t really remember in detail, other the fact it had a successive line of six ice cream shops, there was a small wine shop. Given that this is the edge of Veneto and the start of Lombardy, the shop mainly featured the wines of these two regions. I was full up on Veneto wines given the sampling of Valpolicella, Amarone, and Soave I’d had on the days leading up to this. Lombardy I wasn’t really keen on stocking up on as their main wine is Franciacorta and if I want sparkling, I usually drink my locally made Cava.

Ultimately, I bought four bottles, of which two were notable. The first was one from the classic producer, Gaja which I reviewed sometime back as it was quite wonderfully stupendous. The other was this one from Collemassari in DOC Bolgheri.

Now, Italy, much like France is a heaping pile of different DOCs and DOCGs which is incredibly confusing for most and is not easy to understand as these regions overlap each other a great deal. So the name Bolgheri probably doesn’t ring an immediate bell for a casual wine drinker. If I said that it’s from Tuscany, then that would start to seem more familiar. If it still doesn’t pop to mind, then to clarify more, just remember DOC Bolgheri as the “Super Tuscan” appellation.

This was the DOC created in 1994 to pull all these wineries back in to the fold who, several decades back gave a mighty swipe of the chin to the regulations that existed as they found that they could grow Bordeaux varietals quite well in a region that had traditionally been based upon Sangiovese. This was in a similar vein to the whole chainsaw to the traditional barrels you saw in Barolo as people wanted to break with rigid tradition in a big way.

So, these wines were sold as “table wine” for quite awhile until it became ludicrous that wines like Tenuta San Guido’s “Sassicaia” was selling for 150€… (more on this wine recently by Mr. Jefford.) So now we have Bolgheri which means that you’re going to get an Italian style wine with what may be more familiar French grapes for you. There is a great deal of win in this package but naturally, you need to buy carefully. This wine below was well-crafted, but it’s just at the bottom of my two star rating and whether due to storage in the shop or the actual wine, was definitely starting a decline and for the price, I don’t find it to be an incredibly good value.

If you’d like another option, check out this review of Aia Vecchia Sor Ugo 2012.

Bolgheri Rosso 2010
Dark ruby in color. Good rim variation. Tobacco, cedar, dark plum, minimal yet present bellpepper, flint. Dark plum notes and old wood notes in the body. Acidity medium plus, finish full, lingering medium plus finish.

60% Cab Sauvignon, 20% Cab franc,10% Merlot, 10% Sangiovese 13.5% 30€