Bugger! Walking away from Bermondsey Street, home of the WSET (wine skool), I was pretty sure I’d blown my latest round of exams on the WSET trail. Questions about Montepulciano d’Abruzzo I’m pretty sure I aced, but the 6 points allocated to “How do you open a bottle of Champagne” I have since found out (via frantically looking through my textbook as soon as I’d left the building), I got totally wrong.
Yet, somehow, I’ve managed to open countless bottles of Champagne in my time, when it comes to expertly knowing how to do it, I’m afraid I just “dont av di know how”. Poor me. I await my result in 8 weeks time.
In the meantime, I am celebrating or commiserating with a firm friend, sod Champagne, Masciarelli Montepulciano d’Abruzzo has always come through for me so I am excited to try the 2009.
Masciarelli Montepulciano d’Abruzzo 2009 – PASS – £9
A clear, deep ruby red. On the nose the wine presents youthful, intensely perfumed notes of dark cherry, dark chocolate, violets and blackcurrants. A dry and drying palate awaits with medium- acidity and medium+ tannins, alcohol level of 13% is held well in balance by a “semi-skimmed” body and gum chewing tannins. This is a big, flavoursome wine with some very raisened dark fruit notes, and kinda stalky (high yields much). The finish is quite short although those tannins will hang around your mouth all evening. 82 Points
Value for the €5 in Italy, not for the £9 in the UK. Served up with Spaghetti al Pomodoro – it’s more than passable. Speaking of which…And in case you were wondering:
- Remove the foil and loosen the wire cage.
- The cork must be held securely in place from the moment the wire cage is loosened.
- Tilt the bottle at an angle of 30 degrees, gripping the cork, and use the other hand to grip the base of the bottle.
- Turn the bottle, not the cork.
- Hold the cork steady, resisting its tendency to fly out and ease it slowly out of the bottle.
- The gas pressure should be released with a quiet “phut“, not an explosion and flying cork.
“Give it a shake and aim it at yours friends” – is surely more fun?