Recently, my girlfriend and I joined Fabbioli Cellar’s Wine Club. The fact that Doug Fabbioli has come close to mastering Italian varietals was part of the big attraction to joining the club. One of the first club events that we received an invitation to was the recent Tre Sorélle vertical tasting, held in Fabbioli’s Barrel Room. The Tre Sorélle variety is Doug’s Bordeaux style blend, consisting of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petite Verdot. The tasting consisted of the 2009, 2010 and 2011 vintages with a barrel sample of the 2012 Merlot (which is still fermenting and will eventually be blended with the other two varietals to create the 2012 Tre Sorélle). As we took our position in front of our carefully arranged wine glasses on the U-shaped table in the Barrel Room, Doug began to share some information about each of the vintages and what to expect from each year. He went on to explain that the 2012 growing season was an excellent and exciting harvest year, with some very hot days, almost drought type conditions, and drenching rains overnight to cool the vineyard. This provided just enough water to feed the vines. Fabbioli went on to say that the 2012 will likely rival the great vintages of the past, and most recently the 2010 vintage.
Doug also provided his insight as to what he believes is missing from the Virginia Wine scene. He noted that there is a lack of effort in pairing local cuisine to local wines, and I could not agree more, but what can we pair that is specific to this area with our local wines? I’ll let you chew on that for a moment as I run down the tasting starting with the 2009 Tre Sorélle. Aromatic and round, exhibiting notes of cherry and plum up front while adding a dash of spice on the smooth, dry finish. Next up is the 2010, which is fruit forward up front with deep purple colors, with aromas of mountain berries and subtle floral undertones. Well balanced, medium in body, this blend offers fresh acidity while showing supple flavors of blackberry, cherry and light spice with a plush mouthfeel. This was my favorite, by far, and will drink well over the next couple of years. The 2011 is a pretty good young blend with a bold red color. It is not as aromatic as the others but still offers light floral notes with plum and cranberry undertones. It is also more light-medium bodied with firm dry tannins adding dark fruit, currant and earthy flavors that I did not detect in the previous vintages. The last pour of the afternoon was a treat in the form of a 2012 Merlot Barrel Sample. Recently added to barrel, it’s already showing nice smoky and toasty characteristics with obvious notes of oak. Doug expressed his excitement for the 2012 vintage so I have to say I’m very excited for what’s to come with his 2012 releases! The perks of becoming a Fabbioli Cellar Club Member are: excellent tastings, educational experiences, and some one on one time with Doug Fabbioli. Be sure to check out their offerings by stopping by and consider signing up for their Cellar Club. Be sure to mention you read about Fabbioli Cellars on the Virginia Pour House Wine Blog.
15669 Limestone School Rd
Leesburg, VA 20176