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Waltzing Martilde

Martilde 2009 Barbera “Sportello” (Lombardy) – From what I call the “third way” of barbera vinification: neither an acid razor nor a floozied-up international travesty, but the crisp yet full-fruited version, here done in darker berry (even a bit of black cherry) tones, yet retaining the essential, food-desiring throb of crispness. Delicious. (6/12)

The witch, Paul Gascoigne, and the poplar

[label]Martilde 2004 Oltrepò Pavese Barbera “la Strega e la Gazza e il Pioppo…” (Lombardy) – This is probably the most “difficult” barbera I’ve ever tasted, though not in a bad way; it’s simply ridiculously young, and impossible to get at through layers upon layers of puff-pastry tannin. There seems to be a core of intense, fierce fruit, and the acidity is considerable, but right now this is a wine of structure, length, and the promise of duration. (6/08)