Isn’t it great when one of our discoveries continues to get more and more invigorating over time? And as the grower’s talents and personal characteristics continue to expose themselves in a positive way? This has definitely been the experience with young Massimo Benevelli, an extremely talented Piemontese grower in Monforte d’Alba. He continues to exhibit a total command of all stages of the production process, from vine to bottle. His wines show character, soul, and originality. When tasting through multiple vintages of his production in various stages of aging in barrels, tanks, and bottles; there is a consistency, a touch, an intangible quality. Everything is in balance, everything has its place. Massimo’s holdings are mostly concentrated in the southeastern-facing hillside cru of “Ravera” in the deep southeast of the Barolo zone, in which Monforte d’Alba is the southern stronghold among the five major communes making up the DOCG. The wines from Ravera have the distinction of combining the structural strength of neighboring Serralunga d’Alba with the concentration and richness of Bussia and the other crus farther north between Monforte d’Alba and Castiglione Falletto. Massimo’s Baroli are approachable when young but, like any great Barolo, reveal their true potential after at least five years or more in bottle. An added plus: Massimo’s Baroli consistently give aromas of truffles with age, not a bad character trait in my book. When the occasion calls for a less imposing red, his Langhe Nebbiolo is just right. It possesses hints of the noble qualities we love about his Baroli but with access to a cornucopia of young, inviting Nebbiolo fruit today. A hearty applauso to Massimo Benevelli!
There has never been a better time to be a rosé lover. Far from a single profile of wine, rosé is a big, beautiful umbrella encompassing all kinds of styles and with hues ranging from faint rose-gold to light burgundy. Consider Domaine de Reuilly’s Pinot Gris, which blurs the line between blanc and rosé so expertly you can’t help but go back to your glass to ponder it again and again.
Our first-ever foray into the heel of the Italian boot might not be what you expect. It certainly wasn’t what I expected! I discovered a terroir perfectly suited to producing dry, aromatic white wines of character and freshness. Puglia is the likely birthplace of Italian wine (and, as follows, French wine!), with the vine originally traveling here via Greek settlers who crossed the Adriatic channel. Today it is the second-largest producer of wine out of Italy’s twenty regions. While the region is best known for inky, concentrated reds from grapes such as Primitivo and Negroamaro, the first KLWM Puglian imports are in fact white wines.
This collection includes a set of two bottlings (one for now, one for later) from six regions: Chardonnay from Burgundy, Chenin Blanc from the Loire Valley, Marsanne from northern Rhône, Gamay from Beaujolais, Nebbiolo from Piedmont, and Sangiovese from Tuscany. While every bottle is enjoyable right now, each set features one example meant for immediate consumption and one capable of significant aging.
Today marks a new tradition here at KLWM, and it’s a collaboration of sorts with you, our loyal customers. Diving into a range of categories spanning color, style, producer, and region, we reviewed the year in wine and are eager to share the selections that seemed to strike your collective fancy. These are wines that were enjoyed in abundance, revisited time and again, and kept so many tables decorated and glasses filled in 2022.
This kind of “overachiever”—a wine that delivers the elegance, complexity, or flat-out deliciousness regularly displayed by bottles much more expensive—isn’t limited to any price category. My colleagues and I have been as enamored in recent months with $19 Dolcetto from northwestern Italy as we have with soulful grand cru Saint-Émilion.
The only thing we like better than great wine is great wine that doesn’t cost much and we’re happy to report that a bottle of great wine can still be found for $20 or less. We’ve put together a collection of our favorites all in one place for your browsing pleasure: bargain whites, rosés, reds, and a couple of sparklers.
Chardonnay is a remarkable chameleon—it has the keen ability to reflect the micro-nuances of the environment in which it’s grown. Today, we’re celebrating its versatility with a collection of wines from not only Burgundy, but Jura, Champagne, the Loire, and as far east as the Italian alps. While the common thread that holds this collection together gives us a medley of racy, bright, and mineral whites, there’s a fascinating world of difference between each bottle selected.
Drinking distilled spirits, beer, coolers, wine and other alcoholic beverages may increase cancer risk, and, during pregnancy, can cause birth defects. For more information go to www.P65Warnings.ca.gov/alcohol
Many food and beverage cans have linings containing bisphenol A (BPA), a chemical known to cause harm to the female reproductive system. Jar lids and bottle caps may also contain BPA. You can be exposed to BPA when you consume foods or beverages packaged in these containers. For more information, go to www.P65Warnings.ca.gov/bpa