Mille1 — a thousand and one in Italian, a reference to the length in miles of the country from north to south — is a project of the Bertola family’s Pratello Winery in Lombardy. Dating back only to 2017, the uncomplicated red is a blend of 40% rebo (a cross between teroldego and merlot developed in Trentino), 40% corvina, and 20% merlot. Per the company, “the Merlot in the blend undergoes the appassimento techinque, where grapes wither or dry for 25-30 days, concentrating the flavors and sugars.”
It’s quite an unusual wine, offering a unique flavor profile that is difficult to describe. Notes of barbecue pork ribs and tobacco make for odd counters to rhubarb, blackberry, and plum. Lightly smoky and gentle with raisin notes, there’s an initial rush of fruit, then it’s the savory elements that linger the longest — more smoked meat, brambly forest floor, and a gravelly element.
It’s weird stuff, but I can’t say I didn’t have multiple glasses trying to figure it all out.
A- / $20 / mille1.com