May,2013

A Tasting Masterclass was conducted by Dr. Sandro Boscaini – President of MASI Agricola accompanied by his colleague Mr. Pier Giuseppe Torresani, Export Manager on Tuesday 7th May, 2013 at the United Arts Club, 3 Upper Fitzwilliam Street, Dublin 2.

This tasting was kindly  facilitated by Findlater Wine & Spirit Group (Ms. Michelle O’Sullivan, Marketing Manager)

“Wine cheers the sad, revives the old, inspires the young, makes weariness forget his toll” Lord Byron

Bruce Schoenfield once declared that  Boscaini is to Amarone what Gaja is to Barbaresco and  Antinori to Chianti

This tasting was organised by Caroline O’ Dowd, Dublin Institute of Technology, Bolton Street & Member – Irish Guild of Sommeliers. Thanks to Caroline for all her hard work in organizing this tasting.

Various presentations were made to Sandro and Pier Giuseppe by Mary O’ Callaghan Guild President and Caroline O’ Dow


October,2011

Dr.Sandro Boscaini hosted an excellent wine tasting of Masi wines for members of The Irish Guild of Sommeliers at the United Arts Club on Wednesday the 5th October,2011.Dr. Sandro Boscaini, Chairman of Masi

Dr. Sandro Boscaini

At the end of the tasting Sandro was presented with a bottle of “The Palace Bar 9 Year Old Single Malt Irish Whiskey” by Guild President Mary O’ Callaghan.

The following tasting notes were written by Liam Campbell of the tasting committee and organiser of the Masi tasting.

1. Masi Masianco 2010, a Pinot Grigio & Verduzzo varietals from Venezie IGT 12.8%

Palest lemon colour. Steely aromas with hint of pineapple core and apricot fruit.  Crisp palate with lemon curd flavours and nettle-tea finish.  Light-bodied and refreshing acidity.

Pinot Grigio as a varietal style has enjoyed incredible success overseas as an alternative to oaked Chardonnay.

2. Serego Alighieri Possessioni Rosso 2009 from Veneto IGT 13%

Youthful medium deep ruby colour.  Perfumed with scents of red cherries. Excellent concentration on the palate of cherry fruits, sandy tannins and typically crisp acidity.

The estate was acquired in 1353 by a Judge who was the son of the poet, Dante. “Possessioni” means “estate” in an ancient Venetian dialect.

Varietals: Corvina and a very special clone of Molinara which has a greater depth of colour and intensity of fruit is named after the estate: Serego Alighieri.

3. Masi Campofiorin 2008 from Veronese IGT 13.5%

Medium ruby colour.  Perfumed aromas of wild black fruits and luscious cherries.  Delicious ripe flavours of cherry and cranberry fruits balanced by refreshing acidity. Full-bodied with ripe tannins.

Ripasso, the richer style of Valpolicella uses the still-warm pomace from racked young Amarone added to Valpolicella’s fermenting grape juice.  This addition increases tannins and fruit to allow for long aging and greater flexibility with food.  The Ripasso method was devised by Sandro Boscaini’s father to compete with the popular fuller-bodied and richer styles of Chianti Riserva and Californian Cabernet.  The Campofiorin 1964 was the first vintage of this expression of the Ripasso method.

4. Masi Amarone “Costasera” 2007 from Amarone della Valpolicella Classico DOC 14.7%

Subtle and reserved aromas of mossy and raisiney fruit.  Delicious and complex on the palate with a graphite minerality from the single vineyard’s soil underpinning the dried cherry fruit with herbal sage notes.  Typically full-bodied with a spicy paprika finish.

The Amarone classification started in 1941.

“Costa” means slope and “sera” means evening.  The five stars denoting the exceptional quality of the 2007 vintage’s label were awarded only seven times including 2006, 1997, 1995, 1983, 1980 and 1964.

5. Serego Alighieri  2005 from Amarone della Valpolicella Classico DOC 16%

Still vibrant ruby colour.  Subdued aromas belying the powerful attack on the palate of intense, richly textured cherry fruit.  Gravelly tannins and mouth-watering acidity with a warming alcohol finish.

From the sloping single vineyard, Vaio Amaron the terraces are supported by dry stone walls and limits production to produce concentrated fruit.

6. Serego Alighieri  Vaio Amaron 1995 from Amarone della Valpolicella Classico DOC 15.9%

Medium pale mahogney colour, tawny at the rim.  A complex and mellow bouquet of dried tea leaves and tobacco. Dried fruits and still sprightly acidity with the alcohol concluding on the finish.

Amarone does not need tannins to help it age.  The combination of the elements of concentrated fruit from dried grapes, the high acidity and the high alcohol all combine to make Amarone an age-worthy wine.

Amarone is derived from Appassimento, the ancient wine-making method of drying grapes where the best bunches of grapes are laid on bamboo racks late Sept. to early Oct. in the lofts.  Large opened windows provide natural ventilation to avoid humidity and possible rot.  By five to six months the dried grapes are pressed and slowly fermented for about fifty days.  When all the copious sugar has been fermented to dryness, the wines undergo a malolactic fermentation to reduce the high acidity levels.

Food pairings: red meats, game, quail, roasts and richly flavoured dishes.  Strong hard cheeses e.g. pecorino and parmesan with almonds.

Sandro Boscaini is the current president of iconic Italian wine producer Masi and widely credited with being the unofficial spokesman of the Veneto, the historic Italian wine region which covers such iconic wines such as Amarone, Valpolicella, Bardolino and Soave. He is the sixth generation of the Boscaini family to be involved in winemaking and an established and respected figure in the world of Italian wines.

Staunchly rooted in his Venetian upbringing and the history of the area, Sandro nevertheless is an incessant innovator: while constantly exploring the potential of the Veneto region through rediscovering and cultivating ‘lost’ native grape varieties such as Oseleta, Sandro also experiments with oddities such as square barriques, sandlewood and cherrywood barrels, applying ancient Venetian techniques to the New World, and much more. Such pioneering work led to Masi establishing in the early 1980s what is now known as the ‘ripasso’ technique, which today is emulated by many throughout the region.Masi winery at Gargagnago (Verona)

Masi Winery at Gargagnago, Verona, Italy

This paradoxical outlook is manifested best in two philanthropic movements established by Sandro in recent years: The Masi Foundation, which funds and awards Venetian locals for their contribution to the cultural heritage of the area, and the Masi Technical group, which engages in on-going scientific research into all aspects of wine production, from soil to glass, involving collaboration and sharing research with leading Italian universities. Sandro has also been instrumental in the establishment of Vinitaly in the 1960s, and the Amarone Families interest group in the 2000s, the latter which aims to protect the heritage and prestige of the Veneto’s iconic wine style, as well as being the prime mover behind leading promotional bodies abroad such as the Istituto Grandi Marchi (‘Institute for Leading Brands’) and ‘Excellence from Italy’.

Masi’s wines are the tangible result of Sandro Boscaini’s  love for both tradition and evolution, where the passion for a place and its advancement shine through in every glass.

Findlater wine and spirit group are agents in Ireland for Masi Wines and they supplied the above wines for this tasting.

email  info@findlaterws.ie  or 01 404 7300

FINDLATER WINE MERCHANTS
Alexander Findlater, the great-grandfather of the present Alex Findlater, established Findlaters in 1823.

In 1852 the Findlater Mountjoy Brewery in Dublin was established and Findlaters involvement with wine goes back as far as the 1800’s. John Fitzgerald, Alex’s Great-grandfather certainly seems to have enjoyed a visit to Bordeaux in 1877, as he took with him the equivalent of €13,000 for “expenses”!

Findlater’s were keen to develop their brand name, and amongst Cadbury’s chocolate, Jacob’s biscuits, Nestle condensed milk and Heinz canned goods, Findlaters developed their own extensive range of Findlater-brand tea, jams, jellies, furniture polish, coffee and sugar. Indeed almost all wines and spirits were bought in cask and sold under the Findlater label and guarantee. One could buy Findlater bottled Chateau Mouton Rothschild, Lafite, Leoville Bartons and many more.

Over the last 200 years Findlaters has become a veritable Dublin institution, with shops across Dublin, many of the original Findlater stores are still standing in Blackrock, Dalkey Rathmines, and the Gables in Foxrock.

Findlaters have a long history with Cantrell and Cochrane (C&C) going back as far as 1905 and in 2002; Alex Findlater sold his company to the Group.

Further information

Brolo di Campofiorin 2001, Masi (Veneto, Italy)
Brolo di Campofiorin 2001
Masi (Veneto, Italy)
Grapes: Corvina (80%), Rondinella (20%)
Score: 
The wine shows an intense ruby red color and nuances of garnet red, little transparency. The nose reveals intense, clean, pleasing and refined aromas that start with hints of blackberry, black cherry and plum followed by aromas of violet, blueberry, vanilla, tobacco, licorice, cinchona, cocoa and cinnamon. The mouth has good correspondence to the nose, a tannic attack and however balanced by alcohol, full body, intense flavors. The finish is persistent with flavors of blackberry, black cherry and plum. A well made wine. Brolo di Campofiorin is produced with the double fermentation system “Ripasso”, part of the Corvina grape is dried for 15 days, ages for 36 months in cask followed by 6 months of aging in bottle.
Food Match: Roasted meat, Stewed and braised meat with mushrooms, Hard cheese

Valpolicella Classico Superiore dell'Anniversario Serego Alighieri 2001, Masi (Veneto, Italy)
Valpolicella Classico Superiore dell’Anniversario Serego Alighieri 2001
Masi (Veneto, Italy)
Grapes: Corvina (70%), Rondinella (20%), Molinara (10%)
Score: 
This wine shows an intense ruby red color and nuances of ruby red, little transparency. The nose reveals intense, clean, pleasing, refined and elegant aromas which start with hints of blackberry, black cherry and plum followed by aromas of violet, blueberry, vanilla, licorice, tobacco, cocoa, mace and pink pepper. The mouth has good correspondence to the nose, a tannic attack and however balanced by alcohol, full body, intense flavors, agreeable. The finish is persistent with flavors of blackberry, black cherry and plum. A well made wine. This Valpolicella ages for 18 months in oak casks, 6 months in cherry wood casks followed by at least 6 months of aging in bottle.
Food Match: Roasted meat, Broiled meat and barbecue, Braised and stewed meat

Grandarella 2001, Masi (Veneto, Italy)
Grandarella 2001
Masi (Veneto, Italy)
Grapes: Refosco dal Peduncolo Rosso (75%), Carmenère (25%)
Score: 
Grandarella shows a deep ruby red color and nuances of garnet red, little transparency. The nose reveals intense, clean, pleasing, refined and elegant aromas which start with hints of blackberry, black cherry and plum followed by aromas of violet, tobacco, vanilla, black pepper, licorice, menthol, cocoa, cinnamon, mace and coriander. The mouth has good correspondence to the nose, a tannic attack and however balanced by alcohol, full body, intense flavors, agreeable. The finish is persistent with flavors of blackberry, black cherry and plum. A well made wine. Grandarella is produced with dried grapes, ages for 24 months in cask followed by at least 4 months of aging in bottle.
Food Match: Game, Roasted meat, Braised and stewed meat, Hard cheese

Amarone della Valpolicella Classico Vaio Armaron Serego Alighieri 2000, Masi (Veneto, Italy)
Amarone della Valpolicella Classico Vaio Armaron Serego Alighieri 2000
Masi (Veneto, Italy)
Grapes: Corvina (65%), Rondinella (20%), Molinara (15%)
Score: 
The wine shows an deep ruby red color and nuances of garnet red, little transparency. The nose reveals intense, clean, pleasing and refined aromas that start with hints of plum jam, black cherry and blackberry followed by aromas of blueberry, violet, vanilla, tobacco, pink pepper, cinnamon, clove and cocoa. The mouth has good correspondence to the nose, a tannic attack and however balanced by alcohol, full body, intense flavors, agreeable. The finish is persistent with flavors of blackberry and plum. A well made wine. This Amarone ages for 3 years in oak casks, 4 months in cherry wood cask, followed by at least 5 months of aging in bottle.
Food Match: Game, Roasted meat, Braised and stewed meat, Hard cheese

Amarone della Valpolicella Classico Mazzano 2000, Masi (Veneto, Italy)
Amarone della Valpolicella Classico Mazzano 2000
Masi (Veneto, Italy)
Grapes: Corvina (75%), Rondinella (20%), Molinara (5%)
Score: 
This Amarone shows a brilliant ruby red color and nuances of garnet red, little transparency. The nose reveals intense, clean, pleasing, refined and elegant aromas which start with hints of blackberry, plum and black cherry followed by aromas of blueberry, black currant, violet, vanilla, licorice, tobacco, mace, chocolate and cinnamon. The mouth has very good correspondence to the nose, a tannic attack and however balanced by alcohol, full body, intense flavors, agreeable. The finish is persistent with flavors of blackberry, black cherry and plum. A well made wine. This Amarone ages for 3 years in casks followed by at least 6 months of aging in bottle.
Food Match: Game, Roasted meat, Braised and stewed meat, Hard cheese

Amarone della Valpolicella Classico Campolongo di Torbe 2000, Masi (Veneto, Italy)
Amarone della Valpolicella Classico Campolongo di Torbe 2000
Masi (Veneto, Italy)
Grapes: Corvina (70%), Rondinella (25%), Molinara (5%)
Score: 
This Amarone shows an intense ruby red color and nuances of garnet red, little transparency. The nose reveals intense, clean, pleasing, refined and elegant aromas which start with hints of blackberry, black cherry and plum followed by aromas of dried violet, blueberry, vanilla, licorice, tobacco, pink pepper, cocoa, cinnamon, mace and hints of leather and enamel. The mouth has excellent correspondence to the nose, a tannic attack and however balance by alcohol, full body, intense flavors, agreeable. The finish is very persistent with long flavors of blackberry, plum and black cherry. A very well made wine. This Amarone ages for 3 years in cask followed by at least 6 months of aging in bottle.
Food Match: Game, Roasted meat, Braised and stewed meat, Hard cheese