… will flirt fruitily with your nose, before getting gruff with your gob
Fill your snout with a decent sniff of Saladini Pilastri Falerio and you’ll think that you’re in for a flighty, flirty, fruity kind of wine. Mischievous, light-footed, scarpersome. There’s that beguiling waft of pear drops, for one thing, that always puts me in mind of smalltime juvenile delinquency.
But swish a bit of the stuff round your mouth and you might be surprised at the amount of fullness and depth. There’s a nice hint of bitterness; a gruff quality that contradicts (or enhances, I guess, if gruffness is your thing) the flirtatious, fruity, sweet-shoppy goings on.
It’s not a blindingly extraordinary wine, but neither is it a typical one. And for the rather goddamn lovely price of £6.25 — I’d contend — this is the kind of bottle you could well be cracking open in the middle of the week and still tasting something new, something interesting.
★★★ 3 stars (good)
Falerio dei Colli Ascolani (South Italy)
Passerina and Pecorino
£6.25 from The Wine Society
… will make your stomach purr with delicious minerality, lissom-lingering fruits and distant cream
Here’s a wine from made from pecorino.
No, not the cheese. You wag.
For it seems that Pecorino is also a white grape variety. A white grape variety that (on the evidence of this example by Contesa) makes dry, deliciously mineral-laced wine.
Yeah, mineral. As opposed, I guess, to animal or vegetable. Contesa’s Pecorino has a stony, chalky dryness. But not — let me reassure you, if that all sounds a bit gullet-rasping — in a harsh way. Because it’s also poised, rounded, cultivated. So more of a meticulously-kept gravel bed than a heap of shale. There’s some cream, some distant fruit in there as the flavours linger (and linger they do, most lissomely) in your mouth.
I love mineral-dry whites. They achieve a mouthwatering, stomach-purring appetiser effect — yet need not be excessively acidic. This is a very nice wine to drink before dinner.
And during dinner. And after dinner.
I’m a suggestible old fart, what’s more, so I can’t help but taste — after all — a certain pecorino cheese thing. Yeah, deride me, sure. But there is something about that intensely flavoured, appetising dryness than reminds me of snaffling wafer slices of pecorino, cut from a freshly opened block, when you’re meant to be grating it.
Not that I ever do that.
Rating ★★★★ (4 stars)
Price £9.95 from The Wine Society