Thursday, May 6, 2010

Wine Review Wednesday (on Thursday): Tormaresca Negroamaro “Masseria Maime” 2004, Salento

This six-year-old wine from Tormaresca still boasts a surprisingly youthful, concentrated color, though the nose is showing some lovely signs of emerging bottle age characteristics--leather, the perfume of brown spice, dried violets. In terms of its aromatics, this is a wine at its peak right now, with hints of licorice and caramel coming out on the nose with some air, as well as a charmingly complex, mysterious whiff of artisanal root beer. On the palate, the dark, brambly berry fruit and deep cherry liqueur are still sweet and ripe, though the tannins give evidence that this is a wine in its maturity: They are silky, gorgeously integrated, and heading in the direction of a lovely melted texture. This wine could go longer, to be sure, but to no real end: Right now, it has arrived at a stage at which it’s perfectly balanced, the fruit is at its sexy best, all mellow and expressive, and the bottle age characteristics are giving it all a real sense of depth. The finish has some smoke and charcoal briquette to it, like breathing in the air the morning after a cookout, though there is still enough acidity to keep it lively. What a profound wine, and totally in keeping with the string of wonderful reds from the south of Italy that I've tasted lately.


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