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Here From the Very Start




Wed Mar 29, 2006 1:01 pm

WTN: Mostly OrsiFamily Wines...(long/boring)

by TomHill » Thu Jan 25, 2018 3:39 pm

We tried last week (1/17/18) mostly Orsi Family Wines:
1. OrsiFamily Biancolella d'Ischia OrsiHomeRanch/Filomena'sBlock (13.5%; #455 of 828) 2016: Pale gold color;
very fragrant/floral/apple blossom slight citric/grapefruity quite attractive nose; quite tart/tangy rather
grapefruity/citric light mineral/stony some floral/apple blossom almost Cortese-like flavor; long tart/tangy
some citric/grapefruity bit savory/saline some stony/mineral bit apple blossom finish; a rather lean/spare
Italian white; reminds a bit of Piemonte Cortese but not as rich. $26.00
2. OrsiFamily Fiano OrsiHomeRanch (13.5%; #168 of 828) 2016: Pale gold color; classic Fiano earthy/stony some
grapefruity/orangey/citric/mango rather attractive nose; somewhat tart/tangy fairly citric/orangey somewhat
earthy/stony/Fiano bit tangy/grapefruity flavor; very long tart/tangy orangey/grapefruity slight floral some
earthy/stony/Fiano finih; a very attractive stony/earthy SouthernItalian white that speaks strongly of Fiano.
3. OrsiFamily Barbara OrsiHomeRanch/DryCreekVlly/SonomaCnty (13.7%; #0830 of 1104; Healdsburg 2014
: Med.color; very classic Barbera spicy/Italian sausage/dried
Italian herbs some earthy/dusty bit pencilly/graphite quite interesting nose; rather tart/lean/austere classic
Barbera/dried Italian herbs/fennel/Italian sausage somewhat earthy/dusty flavor w/ light tangy tannins; very long
strong/Barbera/dried Italian herbs/Italian sausage fairly tart/tangy bit earthy/loamy finish w/ modest sharp/tangy
tannins; rather on the oldWorld/rustic side an more like Roero Barbera than Calif Barbera. $28.00
4. OrsiFamily Primitivo OrsiHomeRanch (13.8%; #237 of 552) 2014: Med.light color; somewhat earthy/dusty rather
blackberry/Zin/bit spicy somewhat muted fruit rather rustic nose; lightly tart/tangy some blackberry/spicy/Zin
fairly earthy/dusty/bit rustic flavor w/ modest brisk/bitey tannins; very long strong blackberry/Zin/spicy/bit peppery
some tart/tangy fairly earthy/dusty/loamy/rustic finish w/ modest sharp tannins; not the bright raspberry fruit of most
DCV Zins but more rustic/earthy like Puglia; this is how they wuld make Apulian Zin in the DryCreekVlly if they could;
quite an interesting rendition of Zin. $36.00
4a. UntiVnyds Zin DryCreekVlly (82% Zin/9% Barbera/9% PS; 14.9%) 2013: Dark color; rather pungent/smokey/Fr.oak/
graphite strong blackberry/Zin/spicy/raspberry bit earthy/rustic rather interesting nose; lightly tart bit
lean/spare strong toasty/Fr.oak smokey/pungent/graphite strong blackberry/Zin/bit spicy rather earthy/dusty
bit tangy/metallic flavor w/ light rough tannins; very long strong blackberry/Zin/spicy some toasty/Fr.oak
rather pungent/graphite/earthy/dusty finish w/ light rough tannins; not the usual DCV bright/raspberry Zin
but a somewhat rustic/Italianate expression of Zin; quite an interesting/unusual Zin.
5. OrsiFamily Sangiovese OrsiHomeRanch (13.8%; #0994 of 1656) 2014: Med.light color; strong black cherry/Sangio
rather earthy/dusty bit Italianate/Chiuanti nose; rather tart/tangy/lean strong black cherry/Sangio some earthy/
dusty/bit rustic flavor w/ modest tangy/grippy tannins; very long bright/cherry/Sangio/black cherry bit earthy/
dusty/rustic finish w/ modest grippy/bitey tannins; speaks strongly of bright Sangio fruit but more Italian in
style than fruit-forward Calif Sangio; quite an interesting rendition of Calif Sangio. $28.00
6. OrsiFamily Sagrantino OrsiHomeRanch (13.8%; #0632 of 1068) 2014: Med.dark color; strong blackberry/black cherry/
black cherry cola quite spicy/aromatic bit earthy/dusty lovely perfumed nose; bit softer lightly tart strong
black cherry cola/blackberry some earthy/dusty slight rustic flavor w/ modest ripe/smooth tannins; very long
lightly tart/tangy strong black cherry cola/blackberry slight earthy/dusty/loamy/rustic finish w/ light smooth/
ripe tannins; not as austere as the Sangio and much more perfumed fruit yet still with an Italian/oldWorld sense.
7. UntiVnyds Montepulciano DryCreekVlly (14.3%; Aged in 24% new Fr.oak for 13 mo.; 404 cs) 2014: Very dark/near black
color; some toasty/Fr.oak/pungent rather spicy/blackberry/Montepulciano/ripe light earthy/wet wool/Army blanket/pungent
nose; very lightly tart quite spicy strong blackberry/Montepulciano light earthy/loamy some toasty/Fr.oak bit rustic
flavor w/ modest tangy/brisk tannins; very long/lingering blackberry/boysenberry/Monte/quite spicy slight earthy/loamy/
rustic finish w/ light angular tannins; more bright Montepulciano fruit & noticible but not excessive Fr.oak;
a clean/bright/well-made Calif expression of Montepulciano. $35.00
8. OrsiFamily Montepulciano OrsiHomeRanch (13.8%; #0278 of 1152) 2014: Med.dark color; more rustic/earthy/dusty rather
blackberry/chocolaty/licorice/ripe Montepulciano nose; softer rather earthy/dusty some blackberry/Monte/licorice somewhat
rustic/Italianate somewhat spicy flavor w/ light rough tannins; very long lightly tart rather earthy/dusty fairly strong
blackberry/licorice/Monte/ripe/bit chocolaty rather rustic/Italianate finish w/ light rough/gritty tannins; much more
earthy/rustic like a Montepulciano d'Abruzzo but clean and well-made and not the funkiness that many of those show;
quite an interesting Montepulciano. $36.00
9. OrsiFamily NegroAmaro OrsiHomeRanch (13.8%; #021 of 276) 2014: Med.color; very strong NA some spicy/licorice/blackberry/
pungent bit earthy/dusty/rustic rather fragrant bit chocolaty nose; bit soft strong NA/licorice/pungent/bit chocolaty
some earthy/dusty/bit rustic rather spicy balanced flavor w/ light ripe tannins; very long ripe/blackberry/licorice/
pungent/spicy bit earthy/rustic/loamy finish w/ some ripe tannins; a very attractive rendition of NA but not overripe
or clumsy and shows the earthy/rustic side of NA. $36.00
10. OrsiFamily Schioppettino OrsiHomeRanch (13.7%; #383 of 552) 2014: Med.dark color; strong black cherry cola/Schio
slight black pepper slight funky/wet wool bit earthy/dusty fairly spicy lovely nose; some tart/tangy black cherry cola/
peppery/black cherry bit earthy/rustic/dusty flavor w/ ample hard tannins; very long/lingering some earthy/dusty strong
black cherry cola/Schio/ bit black pepper fairly tart finish w/ some hard/firm tannins; not the high-toned Schio fruit
of Friulian Schios but a bit more earthy/rustic and speaks strongly of Schio. $36.00
11. Ryme Aglianico LunaMattaVnyd/PasoRobles (13.6%) 2014: Very dark/near black color; very strong herbal/thyme/rosemary/
Mondeuse-like some chocolaty/licorice/Aglianico light toasty/oak beautiful nose; very strong herbal/thyme/rosemary/pungent
strong ripe/chocolaty/licorice/Malbec-like rather spicy/black cherry some toasty/oak flavor w/ ample hard/chewy tannins;
very long/lingering rather herbal/thyme/pungent very strong black cherry/licorice/chocolaty/ripe light toasty/oak finish
w/ ample hard/mouth-filling tannins; badly needs more age; a huge beast of an Aglianico; a rather herbal/Mondeuse-like
wine w/ chewey tannins; a ripeness that belies the 13.6% alcohol; an exceptional Aglianicp. $45.00
12. OrsiFamily Aglianico OrsiHomeRanch (13.8%; #103 of 828) 2014: Med.dark color; lightly herbal/thyme somewhat chocolaty/
licorice/very spicy/Aglianico slight pungent/metallic bit smokey/smoked hot dog slight earthy/rustic rather complex nose;
lightly tart slight herbal/thyme/pungent light chocolaty/licorice bit pungent/smoked hot dog light earthy/dusty/bit rustic
flavor w/ modest smooth/ripe tannins; very long/lingering light pungent/herbal/thyme strong Aglianico/chocolaty/licorice
bit earthy/dusty/rustic finish w/ some smooth/polished tannins; a lovely Aglianico in more of an oldWorld style. $36.00
More stuff from TheBloodyPulpit:
1. OrsiFamilyVnyds: I discovered Orsi over a month ago when I was researching the Holdredge Schioppettino
and wanted to find out more about John's grape source. Up popped this wnry (,
one that I'd never heard of before. When I looked at what they were growing, all Italian varieties,
I couldn't contain myself and ordered two mixed cases to try. Whatta discovery.
Owner is Bernie Orsi, who obviously has a passion for Italian wines. His winemaker is Dick Schultz,
owner of HardwoodCllrs in Healdsburg. Not much info out there about Dick/Hardwood, other than a FaceBook page:
( ... e_internal).
There is apparently an Orsi/Hardwood tasting room just off the downtown Plaza in Healdsburg.
Being a huge Schio fan, I cracked one immediately after it landed on my doorstep. I was a bit underwhelmed.
It didn't show a lot of the high-toned black cherry cola I get from Friuli versions of Schio. But as I
tasted thru the entire Orsi lineup, I became much more impressed. These are not big/flashy Calif renditions
of these Italian varieties. They are much more restrained. They show varietal correctness, as I understand
the various grapes. They have an old-World sense to them. They show a bit of Italianate/rustic character
that you find often in Southern Italian wines. This time around, I liked the Schio a whole lot better.
I had to think outside the box a bit and it struck me as this is how Schioppettino would taste if grown in
Apulia or Campania. Maybe the DryCreekVlly is Calif's Apulia and they might consider growing Primitivo
there!! Just a thought. Anyway, the wines were well-received by my group and Orsi is a wnry that is
worth trying for fans of Italian varietals in Calif.
2. Biancolella: This is a grape grown mostly in Campania, apparently of Greek origins. It is often used as
a blending grape. Most commonly found on the volcanic soils on the island of Ischia. This was the first
pure Biancolella I've ever tried. Should it be being planted all up & down the coast of Calif? Probably not.
But it may have found another home in the DryCreekVlly, anyway. I did note that it was lurking there on
the list of varieties available from FPS.
3. Aglianico: This is a grape, of Greek origins, that is grown primarily in Campania and Basilicata of Southern
Italy. It (along w/ Nebbiolo/Sangiovese) is widely regarded as one of Italy's great red grapes. I tends to make
big tannic reds that age gracefully. It has found a true home in Calif, where it is being made into world-class wines.
The Calif renditions are often huge/tannic beasts, but seem to mature well.
4. UntiVnyds: Another of my favorite wineries that specializes in Italian varieties, only longer then most others.
George & Mick Unti are making some of the best Italian varietals in Calif of late.

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