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2006 Ciacci Piccolomini d'Aragona 

Toscana, Italy

$13-$15 Retail

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With a good quality-to-price ratio, this easy-drinking, entry-level bottling is an excellent everyday wine. An IGT (Indicazione Geografica Tipica) designated wine, meaning a wine typical of the geographic area, the vineyards are planted just south and southwest of Montalcino at more than 1,000 feet above sea level. Blended primarily from Sangiovese with smaller amounts of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, the wine is aged 12 months in typical Slovenian oak casks and barriques. Medium bodied with inviting ripe blackberry, cherry and herbal aromas, the wine offers some depth with fresh, fleshy fruit flavors, a hint of spice, soft tannins and a fine, balanced acidity. Drink now and over the next two years. Quite versatile and a good match with tomato and meat sauce dishes, pasta, risotto, grilled meats or roasts and pizza. Buy it at: Swirl, Bacchanal, Rouse's on Tchoupitoulas and both Rouse's in Mandeville. Drink it at: Iris Herbsaint, Butcher, Emeril's, Cure and Delachaise. (Listings current at press time.) — Brenda Maitland


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