WTN: Valentini Trebbiano 1993-2008

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WTN: Valentini Trebbiano 1993-2008

Postby Otto » Thu Aug 08, 2013 2:29 pm

Valentini's Trebbiano is a legendary wine that I had never had the opportunity to try until yesterday. It's certainly an interesting wine (and I'll claim usage of interesting to mean what it really does instead of being used as a euphemism for something bad) but it is very difficult to describe it. It inhabits the same stylistic world as Musar's and Lopez de Heredia's whites: oxidative, rich but relatively low in alcohol, full of weird but pleasant aromas and full of personality and what the UC Davis school of wine un-appreciation would call faults (seriously, how can such wonderful-smelling aromas be faults???).

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Valentini Trebbiano d'Abruzzo 2008
This was pretty closed at first and completely in pieces. But it opens up to smell of apricots/pineapple or some such exotic fruit. Though fruity in aromas, it is also the sort of fruit aroma that promises good acidity instead of only monotonous sweetness on the palate. And this did have good acidity to counter the almost oily texture. Very young and obviously in need of age, but I think it is very good.

Valentini Trebbiano d'Abruzzo 2007
This was a bit of a difficult wine. Though it was some 4h open it was still aromatically shut down. With time it just begins to smell slightly of damp earth. A softer wine than the 2008, but persistent aftertaste. Difficult to say anything about this now.

Valentini Trebbiano d'Abruzzo 2002
My goodness what a gorgeous wine! The first sniff just after opening showed a much more open and mature wine (though absolutely no hurry with this wine). There is again that exotic apricot/pineapple aroma and a wonderful savoury, oolong tea perfume. Nice freshness and cut from the acidity. Though 2002 was supposedly difficult practically everywhere in Italy, I see no signs of weakness in this wine. On the contrary, it was one of my favourites of the evening.

Valentini Trebbiano d'Abruzzo 1999
A very intense, very spicy nose (not oak, though), waxy and savoury in addition to the exotic fruit. Rich and oily in texture but with plenty of acidic cut. I'd love some in my cellar to try in a decade.

Valentini Trebbiano d'Abruzzo 1998
A super-sweet aroma when compared to the others but still with the promise of acidity: honey, apricot jam, perhaps even botrytis? It is a bit strange how the palate is so different to what I expect from the scent: less oily in texture than the previous wines, brighter in acidity and, though all wines were focused and precise, this was extra-sharp in focus. Racy. I loved it though I did find the nose and palate a bit mismatched.

Valentini Trebbiano d'Abruzzo 1997
A very earthy and slightly dirty aroma but with plenty of ripe apricot fruit. Rich, relatively low in acid, but lively enough to be perfectly enjoyable.

Valentini Trebbiano d'Abruzzo 1996
Another very spicy and rich wine; more a ripe than racy style. Very good anyhow, but perhaps slightly outclassed by some others. I hate this sort of tastings because I know that I would be over the moon about this wine if it were the only wine of the evening.

Valentini Trebbiano d'Abruzzo 1995
An earthy, spicy, tropical nose; but the palate has once again the cut and precision that the 1996 slightly lacked. Bright and moreish. Wonderful.

Valentini Trebbiano d'Abruzzo 1993
Though the oldest wine in this tasting and now 20yo it still doesn't smell like "old wine". It is fresh and ripely citric with wonderful oolong tea perfume. Crunchy, relatively high acidity, intense and interminable. Wonderful. And it really seems like there is no hurry with even a 20yo example of this wine.

Valentini Cerasuolo d'Abruzzo 2010
A rosé from the Montepulciano -grape. It's quite a weird smell, but one that I eventually started to like: chilli peppers and tomato and blood/rust. Juicy and refreshing and palate-cleansing. Challenging but very rewarding.
I don't drink wine because of religious reasons ... only for other reasons.
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Re: WTN: Valentini Trebbiano 1993-2008

Postby Bob Parsons Alberta » Thu Aug 08, 2013 2:33 pm

I never knew that your Trebbiano as described could be so cellar-worthy. Real eye-opener Otto.
Hope your post creates some discussion.

http://www.domenicovalentino.com/home/wines/valentini
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Re: WTN: Valentini Trebbiano 1993-2008

Postby Otto » Thu Aug 08, 2013 6:33 pm

I think most Trebbiano isn't supposed to be aged. Cvetic perhaps is an exception? Maybe a few others?
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Re: WTN: Valentini Trebbiano 1993-2008

Postby Charles Weiss » Thu Aug 08, 2013 6:45 pm

Wow, what an opportunity!
Thanks for the notes.
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Re: WTN: Valentini Trebbiano 1993-2008

Postby Mark S » Thu Aug 08, 2013 9:55 pm

Otto wrote:I think most Trebbiano isn't supposed to be aged. Cvetic perhaps is an exception? Maybe a few others?


Don't forget Emidio Pepe!

And Bob, Valentini is the exception that proves the rule.
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Re: WTN: Valentini Trebbiano 1993-2008

Postby Bob Parsons Alberta » Fri Aug 09, 2013 1:00 am

For sure, not a vertical one sees every day! Wonder how it was put together?
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Re: WTN: Valentini Trebbiano 1993-2008

Postby Michael Malinoski » Wed Aug 14, 2013 5:38 pm

Great notes! I'd love to have been able to attend such a vertical. I've only had the pleasure of drinking the 1999 (twice) and the 2005 (which you didn't get a chance to try in this vertical). Reading your notes, and based on my own limited experience, it certainly seems that aging these is a very wise thing to do in most cases. Thanks for the insights.

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