Maison Anselmet, Vallée d’Aoste DOP (Italy) Pinot Noir “Semel Pater” 2019

($53):  France meets Italy. Yes, Italy’s Aosta Valley borders France, but it is still a part of Italy.  So, why is the appellation for this wine and the name of the producer in French?  Shouldn’t it be DOC Valle d’Aosta and Tenuta instead of Maison?  Clearly, they march to a different drummer.  Indeed, Anselmet is known for focusing on forgotten autochthonous grapes, such as Petit Rouge and Cornalin, to name just two.  But, they also make this spectacular Pinot Noir.  Who knew Pinot Noir did so well in Italy?  This one delivers the plethora of fruit and earthy flavors for which Pinot Noir is famous.  It has good weight and ripeness despite a modest 13.5 percent stated-alcohol.  Suavely textured, this energetic wine is a delight to drink now.  The problem is deciding whether to drink it with coq au vin or fettucine with funghi porcini!
93 Michael Apstein Jan 18, 2022