[Image: Bunch of Grapes]
Today's Wine Tasting Note

© Copyright 1999 by Robin Garr. All rights reserved.

Il Poggio Il Poggio 1997 Sangiovese di Romagna Superiore ($8.99)
A cousin to Chianti but made in the food-loving province of Emilia-Romagna around Bologna, this bright and juicy red makes a great quaffing or dinner wine for its single-digit price. Dark reddish-purple in the glass, it shows spicy oak and ripe red-fruit aromas and fresh tart-cherry fruit on the palate, well balanced with zippy acidity. U.S. importer: Opici Impor Co., Glen Rock, N.J. (June 7, 1999)

FOOD MATCH: Fine with a hearty dish of pureed kale and potatoes (akin to Irish colcannon but purportedly Dutch) with Italian sausages on the side.

Beni di Batasiolo Beni di Batasiolo 1996 Barbera d'Alba ($9.99)
Very dark ruby, with shy mixed-berry fruit and pleasant leathery aromas, opening up with time in the glass to an aromatic floral quality that's oddly, pleasantly evocative of new, polished shoes just out of the box. Very forward and ripe flavors, red fruit and lemon-squirt acidity, clean and lingering. U.S. importer: Marie Brizard USA, Bardstown, Ky. (June 6, 1999)

FOOD MATCH: Fine with rare, garlicky grilled leg of lamb.

Rocca delle Macie Rocca delle Macie 1997 Chianti Classico ($9.99)
Dark garnet in color, with ripe black-cherry and spicy oak aromas, characteristic of Chianti. Ripe, juicy, seems soft on the first taste, but firms up well with tart acidity as it crosses the palate. Rounds out with breathing, but predominant oak makes for an awfully "woody" first impression. U.S. importer: Palm Bay Imports Inc., Boca Raton, Fla. (June 1, 1999)

FOOD MATCH: A good match with sauteed chicken breasts topped with melted Manchego cheese on a mild ancho chile sauce and a bed of arugula.

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All my wine-tasting reports are consumer-oriented. In order to maintain objectivity and avoid conflicts of interest, I purchase all the wines I rate at my own expense in retail stores.

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