September 22, 2017

Casa Mia Fiano (2008)

I posted a little while ago about another Fiano and mentioned the widely available Settesoli Fiano that graces various UK supermarket shelves under a range of guises. There’s a good number of articles about the Casa Mia version online – normally a google search pulls up wine traders, special offers and a few reviews rather than a list of blogs, tweets and articles – and this volume of descriptive reviews seems to reflect a wine that appeals to casual drinkers and wine buffs alike. It also puts the pressure on me to add rather than repeat what is already there…

The bottle is quite clever, either by accident or design, in that the clear glass, the steely blue of the screw cap and the crisp white of the label all advertise and accentuate the golden hue of the wine, helping it to stand out from the myriad of pale, grassy Italian whites surrounding it on the shelves. It is helped further, very much by design, by being able to display the IWSC Silver award symbol for Best in Class (although the logic of this is beyond me – how can you come second in ‘Best in Class’?) The Casa Mia is pitched at the £5-£6 price point, depending where you purchase it from, which places it above the real cheapies but below that magical £6 ceiling, which perhaps also explains why so many casual drinkers have had a chance to try a quality Italian wine and to feel impressed enough to write about it.

The wine has plenty of legs going on in the glass, reflecting its 12.5% alcohol level and a degree of viscosity – it’s certainly not a zippy Orvieto or Pinot Grigio. The sun of south west Sicily shines through, the nose taking you outdoors to warm cornfield – definitely not a meadow or grassland, but not an orchard either. The palate wanders to something more fruity, although I don’t entirely agree with the tropical references that seem dominant in the reviews I have read; this may be because this wine is not four years old and the fruit is starting to turn to more of an alcoholic whompf of warmth. The palate is not complex but it does sustain, the papaya, melon and white blossom honey growing in the mouth and slightly at the back of the throat after swallowing. This would work well with chicken and fish dishes that are fairly robust but not oily – things like swordfish, baked Moroccan chicken, coley, or even a roast turkey or chicken. It would also be a winner with picnics, though chance would be a fine thing given what is passing for a summer this year…

Is it worth £6? Yes, definitely, and it’s a great social wine with wide appeal. This may not even be the last year for the 2008, and if you like your whites to warm your tonsils, you could do a lot worse than take a punt on storing a couple of bottles for the next year or two.

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