2016 La Quercia Montepulciano d'Abruzzo Riserva Italy
The riserva bottling from La Quercia is quite a step up from their entry-level wine in many ways. The full year in Slavonian oak imparts a distinct vanilla and cedar profile to the nose along with aromas of graphite, new leather, and dense blackberry compote. The palate is built on a firm foundation of grippy tannins and medium-full weight, and although it's a bit muted at present, initial flavors of dried black fruits, pencil shavings, and licorice suggest that this wine has plenty of character yet to be revealed. A serious bargain for the price.