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2019 Riviera Ligure Vino Bianco “Antea”

Tenuta Anfosso
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In February of 1887, a violent earthquake shook Liguria. In the wine village of Soldano, a massive landslide triggered by the tremor brought half of the terraced Poggio Pini vineyard crumbling down the steep hillside, reducing decades of hard work to a mere pile of rubble. The lower half, however, remained intact, its head-trained Rossese Bianco oblivious to the devastation all around. These vines had somehow resisted the phylloxera epidemic just years prior, so it would take more than a natural disaster to uproot this piece of Ligurian history.
    “When my grandfather was a kid, the vines were already ancient,” says Alessandro Anfosso, estimating the surviving Rossese Bianco to be at least 150 years old. From thick, ungrafted trunks of this nearly extinct variety, Alessandro crafts a white wine similar to what his grandfather would have made. After four days fermenting on the skins, it is transferred to acacia casks, where it rests until an unfiltered bottling. Savor this richly textured, deeply flavored nugget of local tradition with mushroom tagliatelle, sheep’s milk cheeses, a spinach frittata, or the Ligurian antipasto torta verde.

Anthony Lynch

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Technical Information
Wine Type: white
Vintage: 2019
Bottle Size: 750mL
Blend: Rossese Bianco
Country: Italy
Region: Liguria
Producer: Tenuta Anfosso
Winemaker: Alessandro Anfosso
Vineyard: 0.25 ha, > 150 years old average
Soil: Flysch
Aging: Aged in 500 L acacia barrels for 10 to 11 months before bottling
Farming: Organic (practicing)
Alcohol: 13%

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About The Region

Liguria

map of Liguria

A long, crescent-shaped sliver of mountainous coastline ranging from the French border in the west to that of Tuscany in the east, Liguria is a region of unrivaled Mediterranean charm. This applies not only to its colorful seaside villages and carefree, welcoming people, but also to the wines it produces—crisp whites and light reds designed to be quaffed with locally caught seafood.

Viticulture has thrived along these coastal hillsides since Etruscan times. Ancient stone terraces line the steep slopes all along the Riviera, many abandoned while others still host olive trees, lemon trees, and of course, the vine. What Liguria lacks in acreage, it makes up for in diversity and originality: home to numerous indigenous grape varieties, it produces wines of infectious local character.

The hallmarks of Ligurian wines are fragrant aromatics and lively freshness. Whites from grapes like Vermentino and Pigato capture the pervasive flavors of wild herbs and citrus with a sea-breeze salinity, while the rare reds from Rossese, among others, have a brightness of flavor that allows them to complement dishes from the sea or land—served with a slight chill, of course.

While Kermit’s history in the region is relatively recent, Liguria has rapidly become one of his favorite places to visit. It’s hard to blame him—enjoying a crisp, perfumed white with a platter of fried sea critters on the Mediterranean is definitely not the worst part of the job.

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Sampling wine out of the barrel.

When buying red Burgundy, I think we should remember:

1. Big wines do not age better than light wine.
2. A so-called great vintage at the outset does not guarantee a great vintage for the duration.
3. A so-called off vintage at the outset does not mean the wines do not have a brilliant future ahead of them.
4. Red Burgundy should not taste like Guigal Côte-Rôtie, even if most wine writers wish it would.
5. Don’t follow leaders; watch yer parking meters.

Inspiring Thirst, page 174

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