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2009 Birillo Rosso 

Maremma, Italy

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$14-$21 Retail

Maremma, the southwestern-most appellation in Tuscany's vast wine region, lies along the coast where the Ligurian Sea meets the Tyrrhenian Sea. Situated in a landscape of rugged, rolling hills, olive tree groves, sandy beaches and rocky coastline, the Marsiliano family estate produces this "mini" super Tuscan. Grapes for this blend of 60 percent cabernet sauvignon and 40 percent merlot were sourced from vineyards in Manciano in the Grosseto province. The wine was fermented and macerated over a 14-day period in temperature-controlled, open stainless steel tanks, and then aged 12 months in small, second-use French oak barrels. It is full-bodied and offers aromas of red and dark berries, anise, pepper and subtle oak. On the palate, taste rustic, earthy flavors of currants, plum, sour cherry, leathery and toasty notes and smooth tannins. Decant 30 to 40 minutes before serving. Drink it with roast game, herb-crusted lamb, veal, pork, pasta with meat sauces and pizza. Buy it at: Elio's Wine Warehouse, Swirl Wine Market and Acquistapace's Covington Supermarket. Drink it at: Assunta's Italian Restaurant, Ceasar's and The Chimes Covington.

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