Southern Italy and the Islands
Ray McGlynn, Select Wines from Italy

The wines shown are available from Mitchell's and McCabe's  

1. Contini Vermentino di Sardegne DOC, 2005
Heavy nose, somewhat like olive oil.  Fruity, fresh, lemony, not too soft, good length. Very nice but a bit pricey; worth a try as an aperitif. 13%
15 - 16

2. Mastroberardino, Greco di Tufo DOCG, Campania, 2005
Slightly burnt lemon nose.  A hint of sulphur? (Not unpleasant, mind you.) Lots of zing, quite mineral, hint of oak.  Very nice, unusual, pricey though. 12.5%.

3. Tasca d'Almerita Regaleali Bianco IGT, Sicily, 2004
Nose changed dramatically in the glass, from heavy to floral to almost none. Smooth, oily, slightly faded.  From the Regaleali estate in the centre of Sardinia; mountainous so cooler and picked later; Regaleali is of Arabic origin and means Ali's fort. Made from traditional Sicilian grapes: Inzolia, Catarratto, and Grecanico  Unusual but doesn't grab me.12.5%.

4. Leone de Castris, Primitivo La Rena IGT, Puglia, 2004
Smoky, plummy, big backbone and powdery tannins; young, fresh.  Needs food. A nice wine; not as smooth as Candido Salice Salentino but makes up for it in temperament. Since 1665! 13%.

5. Mastroberardino Aglianico IGT, Campania, 2003
A sweet nose, fruit gums. Good crunchy tannins, bitterness, fruit, smoke, smooth long finish.  Will last. Lovely.  12.5%

6. Contini Cannonau di Sardegna DOC, 2003
Nice mid-red; smoky-oaky again, but masking anything else. Quite soft, attractive fruit, earthy, damsons.  Rustic.  Would probably go Rhone in a blind tasting. 14% alc.

7. Tasca d'Almerita Nero d'Avola Lamuri IGT, Sicily, 2003
Great colour. Fruit pastilles on the nose and in the mouth. Smooth, not fat, elegant, gorgeous, balanced, fruity, dark, peppery. 14% alc. Buy!
18 - 20

8. Leone de Castris, Salice Donna Lisa DOC, Puglia, 2001
Coalduust! Dark, quite tannic, bitter.  A big beefy wine but  closed; way too young. Maybe a little watery? Good acidity.100% Negroamaro. 13.5% alc.

9. Mastroberardino Taurasi Riserva DOCG, Campania, 1997
Lovely mid-red. Wood -moke (garden clippings) and green pastilles; really fruity. Hint of bitterness. young, quite 'cool'. Leathery, lovely. There was a debate about the benefits of spending 40 on Bordeaux instead; I don't think you'll get this quality for that price in Bordeaux.. 13.5% alc.

10. Tasco d'Almerita Malvasia di Salina IGT, Sicily, 2003
Golden, dolly-mixture. Great acid, slightly smoky, fruity, honeyed with some marmalade. Picked early and left onmats to dry for some weeks. Lovely; shame about the price. 14% alc.
36 for 50cl

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