Tasting 42 Tocai

At our first Consorzio tasting in Cividale yesterday morning, team blogger COF2011 tasted 42 — yes, count them forty-two — bottlings of 2009 Tocai Friuliano, Friuli’s flagship native white grape variety (labeled as “Friuliano” when shipped outside of the U.S.).

It was fantastic to taste so many different bottlings — in a wide variety of styles by such a range of producers — in one sitting.

There were a lot of great wines but the standouts for me were: Eramcora, La Sclusa, and Rocca Bernarda. When I taste Tocai, especially young Tocai, I look for varietal expression, freshness, good acidity, balanced alcohol, white fruit, and that sexy aromatic note of dried grass and bittersweet almond. Again, lots of great wines in this tasting yesterday but looking back on my notes, these were the ones that really floated my boat.

I also “starred” Alturis (doesn’t seem to have a website), Cadibon, and Ronco delle Betulle.

Definitely a good-to-great vintage for this grape in COF.

The tasting was also special for me because I used the new Mont Blanc pen that Tracie P got me for our anniversary.

For the record, the tastings are not blind, we all trade notes and impressions during each flight of six wines, and the staff at the Consorzio COF is fantastic, offering technical information and facts sheets whenever we request them. One of the best formal tastings I’ve ever attended…