Exceptional results for Rivera tasting round at www.robertparker.com! In the tasting notes following the article about Puglia on March 5 2020 www.robertparker.com issue, Monica Larner rated 8 of our wines that showed extremely well with IL FALCONE Castel del Monte Rosso Riserva DOCG 2013 and PUER APULIAE Nero di Troia Riserva DOCG 2013 in the top 10 with 92 pts for both. TRIUSCO Primitivo di Manduria DOC 2016 follows with 90+ pts and CAPPELLACCIO Castel del Monte Aglianico Riserva DOC 2013 with 90 pts. Last but not least, SCARIAZZO Fiano Puglia IGT 2017 (89 pts) was the best Fiano in the round with VIOLANTE Castel del Monte Nero di Troia DOC 2016 (88+ pts) and PRIMITIVO Salento IGT 2017 (87 pts) to close the great line up! See below tasting notes P.S.: Unfortunately the rated vintages are out of stock at the winery, but can still be found on the markets.
"This is a landmark wine from Puglia, and in fact, it was one of the rst ne wines I tasted from the region many years ago. This was back when I was obsessed with the historic gure of Federico II, to whom the falcon reference in the wine's name is dedicated. Rivera's 2013 Castel del Monte Riserva Il Falcone is a blend of 70% Nero di Troia and 30% Montepulciano, and the wine is aged in a combination of botte grande and barrique for 14 months. Like the other reds from Rivera, it sees a nal resting phase in glass-tiled cement vats before its commercial release. Showcasing the austerity and elegance that I would associate with the times of the Holy Roman Emperor (1194-1250), this wine is precise, linear and tight. Federico II was indeed a visionary architect, man of science and falconer sportsman who built the octagonal Castel del Monte after which this wine appellation is named. It deserves a regal dish of roasted game. Some 120,000 bottles were made".
"This wine now enjoys Riserva status. The Rivera 2013 Castel del Monte Nero di Troia Riserva Puer Apuliae shows authentic lines borrowing from local tradition that are elegant, tight and fresh. The Nero di Troia grape often others a slightly wild side with bramble, forest fruit, crisp cassis or sour cranberry flavors. You get all of that here; however, the wine is also enhanced by spice and toast that result from 14 months of new French oak. Enjoy it with an opening platter of mixed olives and Southern Italian cheeses. This wine comes from a special selection of fruit, and only 6,500 bottles were made".
"Aglianico's natural home is Southern Italy, and the grape plays a leading role in the wines of eighboring Campania and Basilicata. In Puglia, it tends to show slightly softer and richer characteristics with more accessibility overall. The Rivera 2013 Castel del Monte Aglianico Riserva Cappellaccio ups the ante by giving the wine longer aging time (with 14 months in wood, including barrique and botte, and more time in cement) before its commercial release. This is intended to show that Puglia can, perhaps, aspire to the longevity achieved by those other regions. I say perhaps because only a handful of wineries,including Rivera, have worked in this direction. With 30,000 bottles made, this Riserva delivers sharp and focused aromas of wild fruit, tar and spice. And it won't hit your wallet too hard, either".
"Rivera's 2016 Primitivo di Manduria Triusco (with 30,000 bottles made) shows decidedly more streamlined and restrained characteristics, especially when compared to its peers. The bouquet here opens to dark berry nuances with plenty of floral definition. Rose petal and dried lavender buds rise to the top".
"The Rivera 2017 Fiano Scariazzo is a dry expression of this versatile Southern Italian white grape. The wine is partially fermented in oak (with the rest in stainless steel), and it later ages on the lees in cement vats for nine months. You get a mildly creamy texture as a result, with a little more fat and substance on the mid-palate. The wine freshes out nicely with apricot, honey and poached pear. There is a salty mineral note on the close to balance out that hot-vintage fruitiness. Cut up plenty of lemons and squeeze them on a baked, flaky white fish for this Fiano. Some 10,000 bottles were made".
"You could serve this red wine slightly chilled to pair with some sort of summer pasta dish, such as fusilli with tuna and cherry tomatoes. The Rivera 2016 Castel del Monte Nero di Troia Violante is a food-friendly and informal choice with an attractive price tag. Some 30,000 bottles were made. The bouquet is redolent of wild cherries and rose hip, with some earthy potting soil as well. No oak is used here, as the wine ages in cement tanks lined with glass tiles on the inside".
"Rivera roars out with confidence offering this simple but clear-headed expression of one of Puglia's textbook grapes. The 2017 Primitivo is plump and dark with blackberry fruit and naturally earthy tones at the back. This wine is linear and tight with no extra bells or whistles. Pair it with a simple grilled veal steak with roasted potatoes. Some 40,000 bottles were made".