Italian Wine

Various Regions including the Veneto, Tuscany, Piedmont and Puglia

Imported by Empson USA and Dreyfus, Ashby & Co.


The Canella winery, founded in 1947 by Luciano Canella, is now run by his children, Alessandra, Lorenzo, Nicoletta and Monica… In the 1980s, Canella specializes in the production of fizzy and sparkling wines – employing the finest grapes in the Piave area as well as the Prosecco of the nearby Conegliano and Valdobbiadene hills – and joins the Prosecco Consortium. The Canellas’ passion for Prosecco, their trademark love of a new challenge and pioneering spirit lead them to tackle wine–and–fruit cocktails. Hence Bellini, which is soon to become a major international success.

Canella Bellini nv
Veneto, Italy. “Bellini is a cocktail composed of two parts of sparkling wine, one part of white peach juice and a few drops of wild raspberry (the proportions are 150 hl. of Prosecco, 49 hl. peach juice and pulp, 1 hl. raspberry juice and pulp).” Produced with fruit from “Canella’s Prosecco vineyards (in the hills and high plain near Treviso, where microclimate is mild and dry) and Canella’s proprietary peach orchards [which are] 100% Canella-controlled and Veneto-grown, proving some of the finest fruit in Europe: juicy, compact white pulp, velvety texture, sweet, inebriating aromas and flavors. Characteristically deep pink in color, the fragrance is just amazing: peach and raspberry, obviously, as well as appley/pear notes and subtle white flowers from the Prosecco; fun, peachy and refreshing on the palate.” Imported by Empson USA. $13.99


“Four generations have worked at the Pieropan family estate since its foundation in 1890, each contributing something different depending on their generation, their knowledge and their entrepreneurial spirit. Viticulture and vinification began with Leonildo, a doctor in the small town of Soave, who, driven by his understanding of biology and chemistry began working in the family vineyards and cellars.”

Pieropan Soave ‘Classico Superiore’ 2011
Soave Classico, Veneto, Italy. A blend of 85% Garganega and 15% Trebbiano di Soave. “From vines 6 – 60 years depending on the vineyard. Hand-picked starting from mid-September for the Trebbiano di Soave and from October for the Garganega. It is made entirely from fruit grown in their own vineyards situated in the Soave Classico zone and planted only with indigenous grape varieties. The wine remains in glass-lined cement tanks on the fine lees for a period which varies according to the vintage. In the spring following the harvest the wine is bottled and then released after at least a further month in bottle. Brilliant straw yellow colour with greenish hints; the delicate nose is reminiscent of almond blossoms and marzipan; good depth of fruit on the palate, nicely balanced by a zingy acidity that enhances its long length. It makes an excellent partner for soups, starters, especially vegetable based such as asparagus, peas, courgette, egg-based dishes or seafood and fresh water fish dishes.” 88 Wine Spectator– “A lively, tangy version, marked by minerality and offering appealing flavors of cantaloupe, pear, blood orange and ginger. Well-balanced, with a minerally finish.” Imported by Empson USA. $15.99


“Neil & Maria Empson’s labor of love from a longtime passion for this extraordinary region [Tuscany].  The name itself is a tribute to Tuscany: a Renaissance Italian word, it means “Tuscan boy”.  The Empsons chose their friend and star oenologist Franco Bernabei to style the wines with Neil himself.  Nothing was left to chance in order to make the Empsons’ proprietary brand their ideal Tuscan credentials.  Maria Gemma Empson personally designed the ultraclassic packaging and the wines’ characteristic “ancient seal”, bearing the features of the eponymous “Tuscan boy”.”

Toscolo Chianti 2012
Chianti, Tuscany, Italy. Sangiovese. “From 10 to 30-year-old vines on clayey-calcareous soil. Temperature-controlled fermentation and maceration for 12-15 days, with daily pumpovers; aged in oak barrels for 6 months. Brilliant ruby color, elegant nose of berry fruit, violets and iris, soft, silky-textured palate with abundant fruit, good body, intensity and balance. Moderate ageing in oak (6 months) does not stifle the freshness and fragrance of this delightful red. An all-around food wine to match first courses, red and white meat, cheese.” Imported by Empson USA. $11.99


Monte Antico
“The label belongs to Neil and Maria Empson, who launched the Super Tuscan five years after founding Neil Empson Selections. It was their special affinity to the heartland of Italy that led them to make their very own mark on Tuscan soil: with the Maestro of Italian winemakers, Franco Bernabei, they have styled the Tuscan grape per eccellenza and expressed its ultimate potential, complementing it with Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon.”

Monte Antico Toscana 2009
Tuscany, Italy. 85% Sangiovese with 10% Merlot and 5% Cabernet Sauvignon. “The wine is fermented in stainless steel tanks, followed by maceration on the skins for 15-20 days and malolactic for 7 days. The wine is then aged for one year in oak (80% Slavonian barrels, 20% barriques). All of the barriques are made of French Oak. 10-20% of the barriques are new and the remain percent are 2nd year barriques. Deep ruby colour with garnet reflections, its elegant bouquet of leather, black cherries, liquorice and plums preludes a medium to full-bodied palate where ripe red fruit, goût de terroir, subtle notes of vanilla and violets harmonize and linger, interlacing with the soft tannins and silky texture. Firm backbone, perfect integration of acidity and fruit, well rounded, medium finish.” 88 Wine Spectator- “Candied cherry and strawberry notes mingle with tobacco and bitter almond flavors in this slim red. The tannins have grip.” Imported by Empson USA. $11.99


Rentao Ratti
“In 1965 Renato Ratti purchases the first small Barolo Marcenasco® vineyard, in size approx. two Piedmontese “days” (ancient land measurement equal to 7,000 m2). Presently overall holdings cover 35 hectares, divided among 6 properties situated in La Morra, Mango and Costigliole d’Asti. The varieties, microclimates and soils are different, but all are cultivated with the same great love for the vine and respect for the environment.”

“You can always count on Pietro Ratti for a fine bottle of wine. He is one of the most consistent and bankable producers in La Morra especially for those who enjoy the softer and more sensual side of Barolo.- Wine Advocate, July 2013”

Renato Ratti Dolcetto d’Alba Colombe 2012
Alba, Piedmont, Italy. Dolcetto. “Malolactic fermentation in November, in steel vats. Aging: few months in stainless steel tanks. Color: ruby red with an abundance of violet reflections. Intense bouquet with trace scents of cherry and ripe plum. Balanced, fresh, rightly tannic, fragrant and lush, leaving a pleasantly bitter aftertaste. Classic local every-day wine, due to its fairly fresh acidity and medium alcoholic level. A wine for all tables, particularly suited for Italian style appetizers, first courses and fresh cheeses.” 88 Wine Spectator– Blackberry, pomegranate and cherry flavors are slightly jammy, showing a touch of sweet spice. This is dense and long, with good balance overall.” Imported by Dreyfus, Ashby & Co. $17.99


“Salento is the southernmost portion of Puglia and Italy’s easternmost area: a land of extremes and dramatic beauty, stretching out between two seas. Lush, dark red soil bathed in Mediterranean sunlight; historic native varieties and superb old vineyards, constantly windswept by the salty air currents of the Adriatic and the Ionian seas. The peninsula’s amazing palette of colors and sensations endows salentino wines with a layered depth unique to the region. Needless to say, this new frontier of unexplored treasures is just after the Empsons’ own heart.”

Matane Primitivo
Puglia, Italy. Primitivo. “Vine age: 35-40 years old. The wine undergoes temperature-controlled maceration, followed by drawing off and soft-pressing at the end of fermentation. The wine is subsequently fine-tuned in stainless steel. Very deep ruby red with violet reflections, fruity, spicy and intense bouquet. A full, mellow, well balanced wine showing immediate appeal. Pairs well with sturdy first courses such as red meats and seasoned cheeses.” Imported by Empson USA. $16.99

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