Dell’Anima: a new favorite wine list and a lucky son

Posting in a hurry this morning as I head out to a busy day of meetings and working meals and tastings in NYC but just had to share the FANTASTIC wines I tasted last night at Dell’Anima. That’s owner Joe Campanale and his mom, DellAnimom, who does all of Joe’s social media. Joe, a friend, is such a sweet and talented dude and I simply adore his mom. They work together closely and she is a delight.

The place was packed with downtown glitterati, raw scallops, and black truffles.

1999 Vermentino BY THE GLASS! I was blown away by how much life this wine had in it. Joe’s got a fantastic BTG program, with a lot of stuff from the 90s…

So geeked to see this wine by Produttori Nebbiolo di Carema in the market. Perfect with my risotto alla pilota.

If only more people knew Gianni Brunelli’s wines, we might achieve peace in the Middle East.

La Stoppa’s Ageno is one of my favorite wines of all time. Drank it with dessert.

The virtual sommelier strikes again: Castell’in Villa ’82

Above: 1982 Castell’in Villa at Dell’Anima in Manhattan.

When people ask me what I do for a living, I tell them: I’m just “keeping the world safe for Italian wine.” A number of my friends have suggested that I use the line as a tagline for Do Bianchi and maybe one day I will.

In the meantime, I recently received an email from John, who lives in San Diego but was headed to Dell’Anima in Manhattan for a special dinner with his wife:

    I recall reading something about a friend of yours emailing a picture of the wine list at a place in San Francisco, and you gave some sage advice. I hope I’m not being presumptuous, but I was wondering if you could take a look at a list and see if anything jumps out at you. We’re back in NYC for one night this Friday (Sept. 19), and are eating at Dell’Anima.

I took a quick look at owner Joe Campanale’s excellent list and there were a number of great options, at different price points. But the wine that really spoke to me, at a palatable price point, was the 1982 Castell’in Villa Chianti Classico.

Today, John writes:

    We had a great dinner at Dell’Anima Friday night. I’ll save the complete report for when we meet in person, but Joe came up to greet us … and then we decided on the Castell’in Villa ’82, which he poured a bit of into our glasses and then decanted. An Amazing Wine Experience! … It evolved beautifully for the whole hour it took to drink.

    I finished The Accidental Conoisseur on the flight back, and it was fun to see Rosenthal’s quotation on p. 210: “Are there any great Chiantis anymore? There’s Castell’in Villa, okay – but practically nothing else.”

That’s what we do over here at Do Bianchi… just keeping the world safe for Italian wine, one wine lover at a time.