Brian Demay’s Wine Wednesday: Gabbiano Black Knight

I have heard it said that now is a phenomenal time to get into wine, because a lot of the old rules no longer apply. For example: you can buy a nice Bordeaux or Napa Cabernet, drink it now, and it will taste great. In years past, you pretty much had to lay down a quality wine in your cellar for 5-10 years before it would taste the way you expected it to taste. In Italy not that long ago experimentation was prohibited! There were strict rules governing what you could make, and the grapes you could use, and if you deviated from those rules the governing board would withhold certification from your bottles.

Thankfully, some Italian winemakers took issue with that, and soon experimented blending traditional Bordeaux grapes with the sacred grape of Italy, Sangiovese. One of these experiments resulted in a powerhouse wine that you may have heard about: Sassicaia, produced by Tenuta San Guido. This blend was so good, and the wine was such a hit – despite not getting official DOC (Denominazione di Origine Controllata) recognition – that the name “Super Tuscan” was coined to describe it. This week’s featured wine is considered a Super Tuscan, and you’re going to love it.

The 2015 Castello di Gabbiano Dark Knight is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Sangiovese. For a wine with such a mysterious name and bottle art, it tastes smooth and silky, with spicy, rich blackberry and plum flavors that are both tart and ripe, and a dry lingering finish of dark chocolate and espresso. This is a delicious Italian blend that you can find for around $15 locally, and would be an excellent foray into Super Tuscan wine, if you’re looking for one.

On my five-cork scale based on taste and value, the 2015 Castello di Gabbiano Dark Knight gets four corks!

If you’d like to try interesting wines like this, please join me at our next private wine party at Matt the Miller’s Tavern! I host a wine dinner there every month, and we feature several interesting wines, each paired with a delicious course. There are always cool prizes to win, too, so listen Wednesday at 4:15 to win your spot on the guest list, or click here for a chance to win!

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