Growing up in a very largely Italian demographic (Rhode Island) and being exposed to a lot of homemade Italian wines was a blessing in disguise for me. Coming across a winery with REAL ability to replicate real Italian style wine that I grew up with was a true rarity and a warm feeling from within. Late last year I had a bunch of vacation time at my job to burn before I lost it, so I decided to start taking random days (pretty consistent Friday departures) off and utilized them to explore Virginia’s Wine Country further. During this venture I was extremely grateful to make my first stop on this excursion Fabbioli Cellars.
This wine I had come across on countless occasions at Total Wine in Fairfax and constantly wondered if it was worth the risk of tossing over my 10 dollar limit on trying a new wine I had never tasted. Well, was it worth the exploration, no question. The setup of the tasting room was very similar to that of The Winery at La Grange but with more of a setup to that of Cobbler Mountain Cellars. A house sitting at the end of a winding road, where the basement door was the entrance to the tasting room, and the cellar entrance upon walking in displayed wine nick-knacks and assorted wine paraphernalia. To my right was a smaller tasting bar with the larger one set slightly further into the basement of this raised ranch property. The staff was nothing short of amazing. For the extra few bucks I decided to opt for the food-paired tasting. Now before I continue, my tasting sheet is filled with nothing but A+, EXCELLENT, and WOW in every comment on any of the wines during this tasting. That being said…on with the show.
First up the 2010 Rosa Luna ($16/Sold Out)! After multiple vineyards attempting to make a Sangiovese or Tuscan style wine, I have been nothing but disappointed. (Specifically Three Fox and Quattra Goomba, BLAH!) Anyway, the nose of this wine was delightful with wafting scents of various red fruits, a smooth cranberry palate, and very subtle cranberry finish. The acidity was ever so slight, and in my opinion, another year of sitting in the rack would make this an amazing wine. Still nothing short of great. The follow-up to this sensational wine was the 2009 Chambourcin ($16), which I like to describe as the white wine drinker’s red. Forward notes of black cherry to the nose and palate, yet smooth and crisp. An absolute knock out in the Chambourcin category. New Years Eve, I gave my friends back in Rhode Island, a wine tasting as an over all Christmas gift and introduction to the Virginia Wine Country. This wine ranked highest among them. Don’t disappoint your taste buds and treat them kindly with a bottle of this gloriousness.
Next up on the tasting sheet is the 2009 Cabernet Franc ($19) which totes a hell of a price for a Virginia Cabernet Franc. The nose is greeted with subtle spicy notes, a palate that is massaged with dark fruit and oak, and an ever so smooth finish that if presented in front of me, would force me to high-five the wine maker. AWESOME. I’m now anxious and looking for the next suitor for my taste buds. The 2009 Tre Sorelle ($28) is a 65% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon and 15% Petite Verdot blend (Their Bordeaux blend), that brings to the table a plethora of dark fruit flavors to the nose and palate with the ever so smooth, lingering finish of much of the same, with slight vanilla notes.Next up the 2009 Tannat ($45) that carries robust earthy and dark berry tones to the nose and palate, with a surprisingly rich finish for a Tannat. Not being a huge fan of Tannat, I was shocked at how much I enjoyed this wine. The price tag is a bit hefty but the flavors are phenomenal.
The Raspberry Merlot ($22) that was served up in the dessert tasting was SPECTACULAR. The wine has a very well-balanced fruity, not too sweet, nose and palate of the freshest raspberry flavors. It adds a smooth raspberry and almost spicy nuts finish. If you’re expecting a high residual sugar content, you won’t find a super sweet wine here. The Royalty dessert wine ($32) is as I can only describe as roasting cherries over an open fire. It almost has a taste as if you took the warmest of holiday alcoholic beverages spices and mixed it into the fermentation process. Not sure that makes sense but it’s the best I can do to describe it. EPIC. The last of the wines that I tasted was the Aperitif Pear Wine ($32) as my lady friend explained as the wine with the Pear in the bottle. This wine was to the nose like a pear pastry baking in the kitchen to the nose with an explosion of well, ripe pear to the palate and finish. The wine is NOT too sweet, it is very well-balanced, and totes the title of “One of the BEST Fruit Wines in VA” in my opinion. IF you haven’t visited Fabbioli, this is a MUST on your list of wineries to visit!
15669 Limestone School Road
Leesburg, VA 20176