Piedmont Dinner at Great Eastern

Despite being in the thick of the northern Italian harvest, leading Italian wine maker Matteo Ascheri has agreed to fly in from Piedmont for an exclusive winemakers dinner at The Great Eastern Hotel, where he will talk through a carefully selected handful of his wines. The wines on show will include a Barolo, a Barbera d’Alba and the distinguished Roero Arneis.

Each wine will accompany top cuisine from the Great Eastern Hotel and guests will have the chance to meet and chat with Ascheri throughout the dinner.

Ascheri’s knowledge and passion for the region in which he has lived for his whole life is an inspiration. Sitting in the family osteria in Bra and hearing him talk about Barolo, the vineyards, the climate and his new cellar and hotel is one of the great wine experiences. His ethos is clear; it is the expression of the vineyard, the grape and the climate that he is capturing, not his winemaking prowess. It works, and his wines express elegance and refinement that is often over-looked in today’s ‘instant fix’ world. Ascheri’s wines are consistently excellent, and it is worth noting his Barbera Vigna Fontanelle, Dolcetto d’Alba Vigna Nirane and the Arneis (similar to Pinot Blanc) from the Roero hills are all currently drinking superbly.

Menu: yet to be finalised

Wines:

ROERO ARNEIS

This unusual white wine is a pale straw colour with a fresh bouquet offering fruity, slightly spicy notes. Delicate and dry, with great freshness and remarkable balance and finesse.

BARBERA D’ALBA, Vigna Fontanelle 2003

This Barbera achieved 90/100 (Wine International, March 2005) with Simon Woods saying “... in a region where prices can sometimes seem excessive, he (Matteo Ascheri) manages to produce great value wines such as this.” The wine is ruby red in colour, with a deep fragrant bouquet displaying ripe berry fruit and notes of vanilla. On the palate it appears full-bodied with a soft, well-balanced finish.

BAROLO VIGNA DEI POLA 2000

Brilliant intense garnet colour. The wine displays a characteristic ethereal and intense bouquet of violets and ripe fruit. Full-bodied, soft, velvety and persistent palate, it is a great wine to combine with red meat.

BAROLO SORANO 2001

Winner of the coveted Tre Bicchieri Gambero Rosso Award this concentrated deep red with a nose is full of flowers and ripe fruit. On the palate the wine has great concentration and complexity, allied to tannin and high acidity in a rounded, approachable fashion. After blending and 10 months longer in bottle, the result is a more modern style Barolo that does, however, retain the hall marks of great Barolo: power and elegance.