“Like a vintage Ferrari- you just don’t want anyone else to drive it.”

I stopped into one of the coolest new spots in LA the other day- Edgard Poureshagh’s 3Twenty Wine Lounge on La Brea.  The concept revolves around exposing people to a lot of wines, aided by a series of automated pouring machines which keep the wines sealed as they are poured to minimize oxidation.  Edgar’s vision for the lounge is that it feature as many small, family-owned and operated wineries as possible… which brings me to the image above.  He had these precious bottles of single vineyard Masi Amarone just casually laying around on his counter.  Of course, he saw my eyes get big (honestly, my mouth was watering), and he explained this is one of the wines he will feature next week.  You can taste this enological rarity for $15.  RUN!  Don’t walk!

Masi is one of my favorite Amarone producers of all time.  The winery has been tended to by 6 generations of Masi family members.  Today Sandro Boscaini runs the organization with his children and brothers.  What sets Masi apart for me is Sandro Boscaini’s undying passion for traditional local vinification techniques, indigenous grape varietals and producing wines that are truly benchmarks in their league.

Dottore Sandro Boscaini with his grapes.

Amarone della Valpolicella is a wine made from indigenous grapes that have been dried before pressing.  Above, Sandro Boscaini is shown standing among these racks of drying fruit.  Beautiful!  Even the 1998 vintage is truly only beginning to show what these wines will do over their incredibly long lives.

You absolutely must see this video of Sandro’s son Raffaele Boscaini, and Masi’s Head of Enology, Andrea Dal Cin talk about this wine as they are tasting it.  Raffaele says, “Campolongo di Torbe… like a vintage Ferrari- you just don’t want anyone else to drive it.”  Classic! Check it out through this awesome “Virtual Tasting”.

Lesson learned: Geeky Italian wines can be found all around you… especially at 3Twenty Wine Lounge!