Today, we have a beauty from the winemaking legend Riccardo Cotarella. He is notorious for getting the best value out of wines from his home region of Campagna, but this is a wine that kicks it up a few notches into a whole different stratosphere. I’m talking about his 96-point incredibly age-worthy, multidimensional Montevetrano Colli di Salerno 2017. This is among the most sought after wines in Italy in no small part to Parker famously crowning it, “the Sassicaia of the South”
This gorgeous property is surrounded entirely by mountains, the vineyards are perfectly situated facing south and southwest to absorb the afternoon sun. Here Cotarella makes a Cabernet dominant blend, finished with Aglianico and Merlot. It’s so classy and well put together, and the expression at this special place is extremely unique.
The heart of the estate is a beautiful, ancient villa. In the first years of production the basement of the villa also served as the cellar. Now with a state of the art facility, the wines have never been scored higher, with this 2017 a perfect example of what Cotarella has been able to create.
96 Points, James Suckling
“Aromas and flavors of blackberries and blueberries with licorice and black-pepper. Medium to full body. Chewy, yet refined and balanced. Another two or three years of bottle age would bring it more together. Try after 2021 to soften.”
95 Points, Ian D’Agata – Vinous
“Flint, cocoa, coffee, blueberry and blackberry jam on the knockout nose. Smooth, elegant, rich and round, this big, dense wine has a massive but refined presence, thanks to its uncanny, lovely sugar/acid/tannin balance. Finishes long with lingering concentration and density, not to mention a multilayered appeal that is hard to deny. Very well done.”
95 Points, Eric Guido – Vinous
“In the 2017 Montevetrano, I find depths of crushed blue and blackberries, laced with minerals, sweet exotic spices, and cocoa powder, as dark, alluring floral tones pull me closer to the glass, offset by a hint of fresh mint leaf. It floods the palate with silky textures and cool-toned black fruits, as brisk acids carry the 2017 effortlessly across the senses, leaving a coating of savory spice, minerals and fine tannin. The finish is long and structured, clenching the palate with youthful grip, as hint of black fruits fade to reveal echoes of violet florals. There’s so much density on the palate, yet it is somehow lifted, seamless, and precise with all the raw ingredients needed to evolve in the cellar over the next ten to twenty years. Gorgeous.”