The first thing you may notice when you spot a bottle of wine from Pandolfa is their boldly designed label. Bright colours catch the eye and the unique illustrations are enough to intrigue most anyone. While it's a direct marketing choice to have such engaging labels, it's also much deeper than that. Taking one look at their stunning website and you'll quickly see Pandolfa is not your average Italian winery, which can often be stuffy, traditional, and afraid of technology. Pandolfa admits they are a "young" winery for Italy, at just over 500 years old. With that youth, they are embracing a "second renaissance", combining the estate's past and present. This movement includes contemporary labels, visually impressive illustrations across their online presence, and acknowledging the historical figures from their estate's past.
Pandolfa's Federico offering seems as traditionally Italian as you can get. Sangiovese is Italy's number one varietal, and in this bottling is represented on the label by namesake Sigismondo Pandolfo Malatesta's bitter enemy Federico da Montefeltro. Federico is depicted with a prominent beak instead of a nose, as a nod to historical artwork "Calamita Cosmica by Gino De Dominicis and, in general, to Italian art." The mindfulness in Pandolfa's exterior is complementary to the incredible wine inside. Enjoy this 2018 Sangiovese now until 2024 and serve at 18 C.
A beautiful medium-deep garnet colour with a more opaque core fading out to a lighter rim.
We're immediately struck by the red berry forwardness here — red cherries, candied cranberries, and strawberry. The subtle note of vanilla softens the sweetness of the fruit before we get some spice and herbs. Traditional Sangiovese notes of thyme, tomato leaf, and leather round out the glass nicely.
What an enjoyable dinner red! The fruity notes from the nose are carried through, and we taste cherry and strawberry. This is definitely a more fruit-forward Sangiovese that leans to the drier side, with robust tannins and a medium body. Earthy notes of raspberry bush, tobacco, and smoke round out the palette wonderfully. This will be a new dinner favourite, we're sure!
Give in to temptation and make it an Italian night to remember, serving a traditional spaghetti bolognese. If you can, spend the afternoon making your pasta from scratch!
Montepulciano, Cabernet Sauvignon, Sangiovese, Marselan, Alicante
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Sangiovese, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot
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