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Wine of the week: La Fiera Montepulciano d’Abruzzo 2009

Where has this wine been all my life? It does everything a great cheap wine should — reflects its origins, pairs with food, and doesn't cost a lot of money. Make room in the Hall of Fame, as well as the wine closet, since I'm buying a case.

The basics, quickly, about the La Fiera ($8, purchased) before the Wine Curmudgeon goes into lyrical, wine writer overdrive: It's a red wine from the Abruzzo region east of Rome and is made with the montepulciano grape (and is not be confused with the pricer Montepulciano from Tuscany, which is made with sangiovese). Wine quality in Abruzzo has improved significantly over the past decade or so, but prices have remained more or less the same.

Which is one reason why this wine is so exciting. The La Fiera smells oh-so-Italian, and tastes of very sour cherries. Plus, it has that wonderful dark earth quality that isn't so much a flavor or an aroma, but more of a presence — something that so many wines, of all prices, aspire to but fail to deliver. One sip of this and you'll be thinking of your mom's spaghetti and meatballs. It's also perfect for grilled sausages and peppers over the Labor Day weekend. Highly recommended.

6 Responses to Wine of the week: La Fiera Montepulciano d’Abruzzo 2009

  1. bobbygrape@aol.com' Bobby Cox says:

    Thanks for talking about one of my favorite grapes! We winegrowers put two big trucks of Montepulciano in Duchman winery the last couple of days. It has been a real sweetheart in this very difficult season. This one might be the grape for Texas. Tons of color, great chem. and smells like heaven. If we get to grow this one, more Texans can enjoy value priced wine.

  2. jeffcurry@sbcglobal.net' Jeff says:

    Paired with Spaghetti and meat sauce last night. Spot on, Jeff. It was terrific. And my wife loved it even more than I did. Bought two yesterday. Need more already. Thanks for the tip!

  3. Jeff Siegel says:

    Glad to help, Jeff.. especially if your wife is happy.

  4. jeffcurry@sbcglobal.net' Jeff says:

    In the DFW area, World Market stores have a sale on this beauty. 6.20 per bottle if you buy 4 or more. There stock is down by a case as I write this.

  5. Jeff Siegel says:

    Damn. I’m off to World Market today, Jeff.

  6. jeffcurry@sbcglobal.net' Jeff says:

    And if you’re off to buy some of this one, World Market has another that’s cheap but well made. Kenwood’s 2008 Vintage Red Wine – Price is 5.99 ea when you buy 4 or more and is good through Oct 2, I believe. If you’re going to the Grapevine store you’d better try to beat me there.

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