Galardi Terra di Lavoro 2011
Deep ruby. Powerful aromas of ripe dark plum, cherry-cola, graphite, sandalwood, and spicy cocoa, with a sexy violet topnote. At once juicy and deeply pitched, offering rich red berry and dark cherry flavors complicated by smoky minerality and a hint of cocoa. Opens slowly and builds well with air, which bodes well for this wine's future. The long finish features chewy, mounting tannins, and a floral quality. This wine should offer earlier accessibility than some past vintages of Terre di Lavoro, and the Aglianico also seems to shine through more here.
The potential of the volcanic terrain descending towards the sea, together with Riccardo Cotarella, a respected winemaker with a particular interest in reviving and enhancing wines from southern Italy, brought about the birth, in 1994, of a product that aroused an incredible amount of excitement. With a calibrated blend of the Aglianico grape and the Piedirosso grape, also known as "Pere' e Palummo," or Pigeon Foot, from south-west facing vines, between four hundred and five hundred meters above the enchanting Gulf of Gaeta, the "Terra di Lavoro" is created, a wine with excellent structure, perfectly aged in small oak barrels.
Galardi emerged as a star wine property in Campania over the past decade. The region's volcanic soils yield wines of impressive elegance and personality, as demonstrated through an array of compelling indigenous varieties. Terra di Lavoro, the estate's flagship wine, has risen to become one of Italy's cult wines, and with good reason. It showcases the qualities of two ancient varieties (Aglianico and Piedirosso) and the volcanic soils on which they are grown. The two grapes combine to imbue the wine with concentration, compelling complexity, and length.
Produced from Aglianico and Piedirosso (an ancient variety from Campania that –when treated with care – gives good body, soft tannins, and gentle minerality), Galardi's top offering is no shrinking violet. Still, it combines its power with subtle definition and poise that has elevated this hidden gem to cult status.