Maso Marco Donati, Mezzocorona, Trentino

These vineyards and the 15th century palace housing the winery have changed hands twice since medieval times: passing from the hands of the Cup Bearer to the Counts of Tyrol (a sort of Super Sommelier who served at the Ministerial level) to the house of the Conte Spaur and then, in 1863 to Marco’s great-great-grandfather. The vines are situated on an alluvial plain that, thanks to eons of action by glaciers and rivers, has had rocks and sediments from the Dolomite, Adamello-Presanella, and Paganella mountain ranges thoroughly ground and mixed into a unique mineral rich blend with a fine topsoil then sand, down to pebbles to gravel to bedrock, providing excellent drainage. As in Chateauneuf-du-pape, there are uncountable stones strewn around the vineyards, absorbing sun in the daytime to radiate at night and thus producing wines with more color and power than one would imagine at this latitude. Marco makes a slew of delicious wines, both white and red, and we are working on bringing a lot of them here starting with these.

 

Got Value? The latest WINE EXPO-ista Cult Classic:

Marco Donati Situla Rosso Vigneti delle Dolomiti 2008, Trentino 

A deliciously rich, soft and ultra smooth blend of Teroldego, Lagrein, Marzemino and Merlot ready  to sip with whatever food you want to throw at it (or not).

 

Marco Donati Marzemino Orme 2011, Trentino  

Orme comes from the very best plots of old vines which lend deeeep, smoky, brambly underpinning on the palate to counterbalance the bright red fruit on the nose. We remind you to follow the advice of Mozart’s Don Giovanni: “L’eccellente Marzemino, piano, piano, lo vo’ gustar” (The excellent Marzemino, slowly, slowly, I am going to taste).

 

Marco Donati Teroldego Rotaliano 2011, Trentino  

Marco Donati Teroldego Rotaliano Bagolari 2010, Trentino  

Serious concentration of classic pomegranate and cranberry fruit flavors, a good dose of spice on the nose and a very long finish packed with all those minerals we told you about above with everything kicked up several notches with the Bagolari bottling. Try them with zestier pastas, Asian Duck dishes, spicy Thai Catfish, a Fathers Office Burger, they’re just plain good.

 

Marco Donati Teroldego Rotaliano Sangue de Drago 2007, Trentino

Deep, dark and smokey Teroldego called “Dragon’s Blood”, what more is there to say really? VERY limited.

 

Casa Vitivinicola Endrizzi 1885, S. Michele All’Adige, Trentino

Paolo and Christine Endrici are the fourth generation stewards of this historic estate situated in the heart of Teroldego country. They are dedicated to eco-friendly agriculture (which is really the norm in Trentino, you’d do the same if you lived there, it’s GORGEOUS!) and balancing new advances in wine production with the long tradition of their famous zona. Their commitment to their land includes placing 25 bird nests per hectare, using the “sexual confusion technique” (releasing sterile males who mate with no offspring) to combat damaging insects as well as the refusal to use of chemical pesticides to combat fungal infections.

The vineyards are located in three distinct terroirs, all with prime southeastern exposure: Pian di Castello at 350 meters above sea level and rich in chalk, Masetto which is a bit lower and mixes chalk, porphyritic and carbonate soils and Maso Kinderleit which is strewn with stones from the towering Dolomites that were left by passing glaciers. Like most traditional vignerons in this zona, they will tell you that it’s all about the rocks which, to quote their brochure, “are the foundation for the rich nuances and emotions that a wine can give”. These rocky sites were treasured as prime vineyard land in Roman times and the best sites were organized as named crus in the 12th century by monks from the local abbey. Francesco Endrici, a subject of the Austro Hungarian Empire, came to the zona and established the cantina in 1885, calling it Endrizzi so that Italian speakers could pronounced it more easily. Francesco begat Romano who continued the work (and was also the President of Trento Province), Romano begat Franco who led the Consorzio of Trentino producers for twenty years and then begat Paolo who married a lovely fraulein from Germany named Christine and, gee, isn’t this where we came in? Ok, so what are the wines like already?

Endrizzi Lagrein Tradizione 2005, Trentino  Organic  Sold Out, New Vintage Soon!

Classic Lagrein with a comforting mouthful of deep plummy fruit, a hint of smoke and tar on the nose and a long smooth, dry finish. In short, your local Merlot lover will enjoy it but it brings some more interesting flavors to the table for the more adventurous. Get some roast duck from your favorite local hole in the wall Chinese takeout joint and watch the smiles erupt.

 

Endrizzi Teroldego Rotaliano Tradizione 2005, Trentino  Organic  Sold Out, New Vintage Soon!

Bursting with pomegranate and cranberry fruit, spices and a haunting meaty gaminess as a top note, this is a very welcome addition to our Teroldego selection (yes, we HAVE a Teroldego SECTION). We can see this being delicious with everything from Carolina style BBQ to tandoori platters to Mongolian hot pot venison (or just a meat lover’s pizza from Dominoes after a stressful day).

 

Endrizzi Teroldego Rotaliano Riserva Maso Camorz 2005, Trentino  Organic

In the beginnings of the labor movement, President Hoover once gave an audience to AFL union founder Samuel Gompers and asked him, “Just what the hell do you want?”. Mr. Gompers replied emphatically “MORE!”. This delivers more depth of fruit, more exotic spices and MUCH more in the rich mouthfeel department. Take a bottle to your next negotiation and the odds will be decidedly in your favor.

 

Endrizzi Teroldego Vallagarina Gran Masetto 2006, Trentino  Organic

The 2004 was one of our top five wines on our 2007 Italian buying expedition: made from 100% Teroldego that has been air dried in the manner of Amarone or Sforzato, we instantly dubbed it “Teroldegorone”! This new vintage is even better: Packed with simply amazing depth and richness but with a smooth, dry finish, this will be fabulous with rich stews or braised dishes, game or big cheeses or you could just sip it while reading a good book by a roaring fire. Amazing, worth it, very, very limited.