Pecorino, 2016. Valori

Pecorino, 2016. Valori

Item #: U0719W1II
Vintage: 2016
Varietal: Pecorino
Vineyard/Appellation: Pecorino D.O.C., Italy
Color: Deep Gold
Nose: Acacia, Apricot, Green Apple
Palate: Bright Peach and Apricot
Finish: Spice, Mineral, Citrus
Rating: 95
Cellaring/Serving Suggestions: Now through 2022/Seafood, Vegetarian/13.0% Alcohol by Volume

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Luigi Valori was a professional soccer player in the 1970s. For a man who spent his professional life on the ground, I guess it's logical that a feeling for the ground would have gotten into his blood.

And so, upon his soccer retirement in 1983, Luigi studied agronomy and worked in several vineyards before establishing his own winery in 1996. Of course it was organic and sustainable, with the goal of creating exciting and undisturbed wine in its finest incarnation.

Valori is in the southern state of Abruzzo, for years thought of as an area producing inexpensive, uninteresting wines. That is no longer the case. Wines from this area now fetch prices and esteem equal to the hallowed ground of Chianti and Piedmont.

The grape in our selection is one of our favorites, Pecorino, a uniquely Italian varietal that is as charming as it is delicious. It is named after the famous cheese, Pecorino Romano, not because it tastes like cheese, but because the grapes are loved by sheep, the milk from which the cheese is made. Among all the talents the Italian culture possesses, a sense of humor is certainly one of them.

At first whiff, you know there is something different here. It's not just floral, or just tropical, or just spice. It's all of it. Peach and apricot live within the glass, sharing the spotlight with acacia, jasmine, a hint of roasted almonds and allspice. The finish is electrifying, with all that the nose promises continuing from beginning to grand and glorious end.