Another Italian wine with a big score (98 points??) and an even bigger bottle, but does it live up to the hype? The Ronco di Sassi Vino Rosso d'Italia from Aldi.
The Ronco di Sassi Vino Rosso is available exclusively through Aldi and sells for $15.99, making it one of the more expensive wines they stock, at least here in the US. It is imported by Prestige Beverage Group.
This wine is made by the same producer as the Aldi Grande Alberone Rosso, Provinco Italia. The cork says Vini Pregiati, which I assume is Dacastello Vini Pregiati, who produce a number of wines of their own and also private label which I'm guessing means they actually produced this one for Provinco Italia, who in turn made it for Aldi. Got it? Such is the nature of inexpensive private label wines...
My name is "Ronco di Sassi", I'm an Italian red wine. I am the result of a lot of work in the vineyards and in the cellar, where I rested long before arriving on your table. I am full-bodied with a deep red color and aromas of blackberries, spices, vanilla and a hint of chocolate. I am velvety, very pleasant to drink by myself or paired with pasta with red sauce, red meats, game, and mature cheeses. I am best when served at room temperature.
This wine has a lot of similarities to the Tinazzi Opera No 3 from Costco that we recently covered in that it also received 98 points from the Italian critic Luca Maroni, comes in a huge, extremely heavy bottle and clocks in at over 15% alcohol. And while the blends both feature Primitivo, they are otherwise different and today's wine leans much more to the sweet side of things.
The 2015 Ronco di Sassi Vino Rosso d'Italia pours super dark, almost black in the glass. It opens with aromas of sweet red berries, a little cinnamon and other baking spice and a bit of a vegetal note.
Taking a sip reveals a big, sweet and tasty full-bodied wine in which you can definitely taste the Primitivo. There are plenty of prune, plum and raisin flavors in this almost port-like blend that also features soft tannins and nice touches of licorice and spice. There's plenty of sugar too but it carries it pretty well and while it's not super complex, it is darn tasty.
It ends with good length, more sweet fruit and nice touches of vanilla, coffee and chocolate on the long finish. 98 points? No way, but at $15 it is a Recommended Buy.