A note from our wine director Jeremy Parzen.
Above: Prince Alessandrojacopo Boncompagni Ludovisi, owner and winemaker at the Fiorano estate outside of Rome, one of the new wines on our list this fall.
We are so thrilled to announce the launch of our new fall wine list at Sotto.
Over the more than six years that Sotto's been open, we've seen more and more southern Italian wine finding its way to the southern Californian market.
That wasn't always the case. When we first opened the doors of the restaurant, there were so many wines that we had to source "creatively" from east coast importers and distributors. And in many cases, the wines that we wanted for our program simply weren't available in the U.S.
There was another challenge as well. When the restaurant first opened, we'd often hear our guests say things like "I don't drink southern Italian wine" or "I only drink Italian wine from Tuscany and Piedmont."
"Where are the Super Tuscans?" a lot of our guests would ask us.
Today, I'm happy to report that we are living in a renaissance of southern Italian wine in California and across the U.S.
It's not thanks solely to us and to you. But we are proud to have taken part in the new wave of southern Italian wine to reach our shores. And we are eternally thankful to our guests for tagging along and believing in our mission to bring southern Italian wine to Los Angeles.
Southern Italian wine represents some of the greatest value and quality in the world of wine today. Beyond our "core" list of producers that will never disappear from our program, I've added some wonderful wines from Sicily, like the Marabino Nero d'Avola and the Marabino Chardonnay. Both wines are organically farmed and spontaneously yeasted. And if you're surprised that I've added an international grape variety like Chardonnay, please come in and taste this gorgeous, lean, vibrant wine. I was so impressed by its freshness and "transparency of fruit" that I broke my own rule of not including international grape varieties on our list.
And speaking of international grape varieties, we've also just added a Cabernet Sauvignon by Fiorano from outside Rome. It's one of the most coveted wines in Italy today by one of the pioneers of natural winemaking there. Where Cabernet from Tuscany has always left me underwhelmed, these wines have really impressed me over the years with their minerality and layers and layers of nuanced fruit and umami flavors. Not only are we pouring Fiorano's "Fioranello" by the glass, but we also have the 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon by the bottle. At 10 years out, this wine is just now coming into its prime.
We're looking forward to sharing all of our new discoveries with you. And not to worry: all of our favorite classics are still here.