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Default TN: Lazio & Abruzzo, plus Marche, Loire, Finger Lakes, Santa Cruz

Betsy needed to provide cello trio with lunch Saturday, so for dinner Friday I made a big batch of chicken curry with red lentils, chickpeas, and cauliflower. Wine was the 2012 Dr. K. Frank Dry Riesling- just a hint of sweetness to the apple fruit, some floral elements, a little mineral. Good if a little short. B/B-

Then off to Dave's from my local non-serious groups look at Lazio and Abruzzo. I wasn't taking contemporaneous notes, hope I have these right.

2011 Villa Malacari Rosso Conero
I said this was non-serious group, always someone off-theme. Guy said local store didn't have any Abruzzo or Lazio (others say 3 MdA). so he brought Montepulciano from Marche. Black cherry, flowers, moderate acids. B

2011 Frentana Rubesto Montepulciano d'Abruzzo Riserva
Tacky tannin, raw oak, hot. C+/C

2010 Illuminati Montepulciano d'Abruzzo Riserva
Big, bold, oak but better balanced than other riserva. B/B+

2006 Italo Pietrantonj Montepulciano d'Abruzzo
This was my favorite of the MdA- light, fresh, with bright red fruits and a lot of earth

(vintage?) Miglianico Il Fondatore Montepulciano d'Abruzzo
A bit of vanilla, hot/overripe flavors, some others liked. C+

1995 Falesco Montiano
About time this started to go round (blind) Dave said "too bad all Abruzzo, this song is for Lazio" (he had on Dylan's When I Paint my Masterpiece, Rome lyrics). I said "well actually...."
Showing mature but not tired, lovely black plum fruit with some cigarbox , pencil shavings, and coffee, good showing. B+

2013 Zaccagnini Montepulciano d'Abruzzo
Light, fresh peppery fruit, some earth. Good value. B/B+

2013 Hymnus Montepulciano d' Abruzzo
Raspberries, bright, fun. B+/B

I had brought the Illuminati and 95 Montiano, with a '98 Falesco Montiano as backup. As the Montiano was a hit, at end of night I also opened the 1998 Falesco Montiano. Others really liked, but this was not near as attractive as the '95 to me. Same black plum fruit, but tannins a little rough, and a VA/pickle thing on nose- light but distracting. B-

Fun night overall. I consistently preferred the cheaper MdAs.

Saturday night I grilled salmon and squash, with rice/furikake and collard greens. Wine was the 2006 Rhys Alpine Pinot Noir. I thought it sweet at first, a little offputting, but I quickly got used to it and ended up enjoyed. Sweet raspberry and black cherry fruit, spice, just a hint of cola. Well-balanced, good length. B+

Sunday Betsy had a concert on Long Island, I had dinner ready when she returned- a Biba Caggiano recipe for shrimp, green beans in duck oil (oil I confited legs in), & salad. Recipe needed almost 2 cups of wine, didn't want to use Cotat, so opened a 2014 Pepiere Muscadet. Fresh, briney, brisk, the cooking wine is my favorite wine of the week! B++

Actual dinner wine was the 2007 Pascal Cotat ""Monts Damnes" Sancerre. Um, color a little deep. Um, nose a little nutty. Um, yes, advanced on palate. I drank this (and liked) but this is more advanced than I expected. An '07 F. Cotat Monts Damnes (bought at same time, stored in same box) opened last month was fresh and young. This is tasty, but blind I would have guessed 15-20 years old. Rich citrus and pear fruit, good acids, plenty of length, but with light nutty/oxidative topnotes. I'll open another soon to see if pattern. B

Grade disclaimer: I'm a very easy grader, basically A is an excellent wine, B a good wine, C drinkable. Anything below C means I wouldn't drink at a party where it was only choice.Furthermore, I offer no promises of objectivity, accuracy, and certainly not of consistency.
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