1980 Vallana Spanna BRILLIANT!

Vallana Spanna

Posting in a hurry this morning but just had to transmit the joy contained in a bottle of 1980 Vallana Spanna shared with me last night by my friend and colleague Rob Forman, a dude who really knows his Italian wine.

1980 was not a great vintage in Piedmont and as a matter of fact, I cannot remember tasting anything from Langa nor Novara from that year (if you have any notes on the vintage, please share!).

Slightly shaken by the trip and somewhat cloudy, this wine was no worse for the wear: it was entirely brilliant, alive and fresh, with bright acidity and delicious wild berry fruit and mud. So unbelievably good.

Vallana Spanna

When time permits, I’ll post about some of the fascinating wines that Rob opened with me and a group of Austin wine professionals (the other Pomino, anyone?).

And I’ll also tell the captivating story of how he came into possession of this amazing bottle.

Vallana Spanna

Click on the photo of the back label to view more closely.

That’s all for now, folks. Me? I’m keeping it between the ditches

The new vintages of López de Heredia have arrived in the Groovers Paradise!

Making the rounds of yesterday’s trade tastings in the Groover’s Paradise (aka Austin, Texas), I was extremely fortunate to get to taste the current releases from one of our favorite wineries in the world, López de Heredia, Viña Gravonia blanco and Viña Tondonia rosado 2000. Ten-year-old white and rosé wines. I was impressed by how bright the fruit is in these bottlings, unusual (to tell the truth) for this house, where savory and salty notes always seem to dominate. Can’t wait to crack these with Tracie P, ideally over some ceviche and tacos al pastor at Fonda San Miguel.

It was great to catch up with everyone after being away for so long, like wine professionals April Collins, Jeff Courington, and Lolly Thompson.

Wine broker extraordinaire Susana Partida was rocking the Bastianich.

When I see these two dudes, Craig Collins and Mark Sayre, I always “smile like a fool,” as my friend Thompson likes to say.

Rob was in fine Forman: SO MANY killer Italian wines in his book (Inama, Marchesi di Gresy, Selvapiana, Tenuta Sant’Antonio) from Dalla Terra.

This Valpolicella from Degani is a welcomed new arrival in my Groover’s Paradise. It was fresh and bright, juicy and delicious, the way I like it. And it should weigh in well under $20 retail according to importer Enotec.

How does the song go, Flaco?

the guacamole queen is there
oh Lawd she’ll really curl your hair.
enchiladas and BBQ
oh baby whatch gonna do
come over here beside me
tell me baby how you been
I get through laying it on you
well you know that I’m back again

Groover’s Paradise
Groover’s Paradise
Groover’s Paradise

It’s good to be back…