Facebook and oxidized stinky Fiano pair nicely

Above: Fiano d’Avellino grapes on the De Conciliis estate in Cilento (Campania, Italy).

Isn’t Facebook a trip? It gives us a view unto the personal lives and sometimes very intimate details of people whose lives would not ordinarily intersect with ours in the real-time world (as opposed to the virtual world). The vicissitudes we witness in this strange new medium are sometimes moving in ways — perhaps because of the degree of separation yet lack of alientation — unexpected and often welcome.

I had never met him, save for a phone interview I did with winemaker Bruno de Conciliis many years ago. After I tasted his 2004 Antece last year at Bacaro in Los Angeles, I looked for him on Facebook because I wanted to write him and tell him how much I liked this stinky, oxidized expression of Fiano d’Avellino, one of Campania’s most ancient grape varieties and one that has a enjoyed a renaissance in recent decades: it’s macerated with skin contact for 7 days, he wrote me, and, as he put it in a Facebook message, “we try for oxidation.” His approach is to “let what easily oxidizes oxidize. The rest is welcomed.” The resulting unfiltered wine (aged in large old-oak casks) is delightful, rich and aromatic, with some tannic structure. It’s a great example of natural wine. Bruno rightly calls it Antece or the ancients (akin to the Italian, antici; the penultimate syllable is the tonic): gauging from my knowledge of ancient winemaking (as described in Columella and Pliny), I believe that this wine is very similar to the wine produced in antiquity (and probably until the 18th century in Italy). (It reminds me of IWG’s excellent post, Interview with the Ancients.)

Bruno wrote that it’s his favorite wine he’s ever made and he sent me these photos. Facebook and wine seem to pair nicely together, don’t they?

In other news…

When is Brooklynguy gonna get a Facebook? Fugedaboudit.

Coulée de Serrant! (and NYC show Monday is nearly sold out)

chicken

Above: Tracie B snapped this pic of me at Coulée de Serrant. Do you see the chicken crossing the road? Why does it cross the road, you ask? To “regulate” the vineyards, no doubt! (That’s the euphemism they use at Coulée de Serrant.) Mother nature does her work…

On Thursday (after a string of three rocking and super fun gigs in Paris), Tracie B and I visited Coulée de Serrant in Savennières (Loire), the estate and vineyard where some of our favorite wines are made.

map

We’re about to leave now for the NN+ gig in Lyon and I’ll post about our fascinating visit as soon as we’re back stateside. We learned that it is botrytis and not oxidation (as many believe) that give Joly’s wines their distinct aromas. Tasting the 07s revealed just how vintage-driven these wines are (compared to the 05s, the most recent we’d tasted in the U.S.). We had a blast!

In other news…

We were happy to learn that the Monday show at the Mercury Lounge in NYC is nearly sold out. There are still tickets available (click link to buy) so please pre-buy if you can. Looking forward to seeing y’all in NYC: it’s been so much fun to play the new album (available on Itunes now, btw) and I can’t wait for you to hear it!

Okay, gotta run! Don’t wanna be late for the gig!