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Nedicus Maximus
Portland, ME
my passion for wine dragged me into this business at the tender age of 18
Interests: Wine, Hash running, Rowing, general adventuring and doing things other people think are bad ideas.
Recent Activity
Virtual Wine Tasting Links and Info Virtual Wine Tastings 5 pm is my first virtual wine tasting with wines from the wineries I just visited in Chile! If you want to join and open any of these bottles you've purchased just use the Zoom link below or you can also see it on Instagram live. There's also a link to a Pandora station of Cumbia, which is what we listened to literally all the time I was in Chile. One of Roberto's crew had a giant battery powered speaker that he carried everywhere he went. Chilean Pandora Station Zoom link... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at Wines; Tasted!
Stories from my Crazy Wine Trip to Chile Wine Making in Southern Chile is Insane 2 weeks ago I was pressing grapes in southern Chile And I was doing it by hand over a bamboo mat! Earlier this month I went to rural southern Chile to seek out a metaphorical legendary lost city of wine making. It was crazy on it's own, but now in the perspective of the pandemic and shut down of normal life it seems even more surreal! In a normal world I would have come back and hosted all kinds of events to share what I... Continue reading
Posted 7 days ago at Wines; Tasted!
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Saturday afternoon I went with part of Roberto's crew over to Santa Juana to harvest some plums and to move water in the vineyard. I had no idea what that meant but I jumped at the chance to spend some time getting to know the group of young guys working for Roberto. It was about a 45 minute drive and we listened to the most eclectic mix of Pablo Neruda set ro rock music, Chilean folk music, reggaeton, and Cumbia. It was not and the drive made us all drowsy so first thing when we got there was to mix... Continue reading
Posted Mar 23, 2020 at Wines; Tasted!
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Monday we made the three hour drive up from Bio Bio to visit Gonzalez Bastias in the Maule valley. We took our time and had some street food in the working city of Talca. We ran into intense street demonstration between young women protesting for equal rights and saw them get confronted by riot police. Chile is in an intersting situation right now. They're still moving on from the rule of Augusto Pinochet (a brutal military dictator who ruled until 1990) and are about to vote on a new constitution. The country has modernized quickly but it's happened at different... Continue reading
Posted Mar 22, 2020 at Wines; Tasted!
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Mauricio was born a couple hours north of Bio Bio up in the town of Talca in Chile's central valley. He worked at a couple wineries up in northern Chile, then over in Mendoza AR, before starting his own project down here in Bio Bio. He said (in the video you can watch below) that he moved down here because it was a nicer place to live, to make wine on his own terms, and for he and his family's quality of life. He said that up north in the industrial vineyards he had worked in his kids couldn't play... Continue reading
Posted Mar 22, 2020 at Wines; Tasted!
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In early March 2020 I got to spend several days with Roberto Henriquez during harvest. Roberto grew up in the areaaround Bio Bio and had the experience of making wine with his grandfather when he was younger but then went on to other things. He's a pretty awesome drummer and has an album his band put out years ago. After spending some time as a musician Roberto got into a university program studying Agronomy. If I understood correctly, there aren't official wine making programs in Chile; you have to study Agronomy and it's considered engineering by the government and quite... Continue reading
Posted Mar 21, 2020 at Wines; Tasted!
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The disaster in public health and the economy caused by the spread of covid-19 is unlike anything we’ve experienced before. In modern times we've never had a new virus emerge and create a pandemic. The resulting economic shock is also unique. All of our recent economic crises started as asset bubbles or liquidity crunches that first affected the financial industry before trickling down to Main St America. The covid-19 economic crisis is going in the opposite direction: it has hit Main Street first as small businesses close to protect the health of themselves and the public. Consumer spending is 70%... Continue reading
Posted Mar 16, 2020 at Wines; Tasted!
Ned's Going to Central Chile! Not just Chile: Bio Bio and Itata valleys! Look out for a lot of exciting videos, Blog Posts, and Social Media No, I'm not just telling you about Chile to make you Jealous I'm flying to Chile next Wednesday the 4th of March to visit Itata and Bio Bio. These are valleys down around Concepcion in central Chile, about 350 miles south of the capital Santiago. I speak no Spanish and have maybe 1/4 of a plan at this point. Why am I going 350 miles south of Santiago? Most of the wine that gets... Continue reading
Posted Feb 27, 2020 at Wines; Tasted!
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I've been working with the Jurtschitsch winery for nearly a year now and I've been pretty excited about their wines, but this new arrival is one of the best wines I've tasted in the last 4 months. Mon Blanc is kind of sort of an experiment to see what full on biodynamics can in their particular climate. This is a blend of Gruner, Riesling, Weissburgunder, and Muskateller - all from the Loiserberg vineyard. This spends ten days on skins in open top red wine fermenters. The juice then goes into 600 L oak barrels. The wine is unfined and unfiltered.... Continue reading
Posted Feb 25, 2020 at Wines; Tasted!
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8 years ago when I originally met Frank Cornelissen, he told me that he was spending all his money on buying more land on Etna. He said that more than anything he wanted to make wines that taste like liquid volcanic rock. He said he wanted to see Etna established as one of the premier wine regions in the world. Those goals sounded audacious back then, but Frank has stuck by them and is on his way to achieving them. That's crazy. Frank pouring wine at lunch Three and a half years ago I visited Frank on Etna. He'd just... Continue reading
Posted Nov 20, 2019 at Wines; Tasted!
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I recently spent 4 days on Mount Etna and visited Passopisciaro, Frank Cornelissen, I Vigneri & Salvo Foti, Eduardo Torres Acosta, and SRC Vini. I work with Frank, Passopisciaro, Eduardo, I Vigneri, and Romeo Castello so I wasn't just there for fun. Etna is to me one of the most exciting wine regions in Italy. Top reason is the land and climate. I mean; it's an active volcano that is also the tallest mountain in Italy south of the Alps. The steep terraced vineyards crawl along the broken surface of the volcano, sometimes facing, east, then north, then west, and... Continue reading
Posted Nov 17, 2019 at Wines; Tasted!
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On my second day in Sicily I left Etna and headed south in the general direction of Gela on the south coast. It was rural rolling farm country interspersed with just empty sharp rocky ridges. I found Lamoresca without much trouble though. Lamoresca is nearly an houra and a half south but you can still see Etna on the horizon hulking over all the hills. Filippo met me in the driveway but was clearly worried because I was early and he was doing 5 things at once. I assured him that I had come early specifically to go running, so... Continue reading
Posted Nov 15, 2019 at Wines; Tasted!
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In the morning I headed over to Chiaramonte Gulfi to find Pianogrillo. Lorenzo was outside supervising some work with the olive trees and also a special breed of black Sicilian pigs they raise on the farm. Pianogrillo is a 100 hectare estate that's been in his family for many generations. He seemed super involved in the details of day to day running of the farm and seemed to be particularly passionate about working in and with nature. First he gave me a short tour of the family house, which long long ago had been a fortified watch tower protecting the... Continue reading
Posted Nov 15, 2019 at Wines; Tasted!
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My solo running trip to Etna 3 and a half years ago to Etna was a life changing experience. It was incredible but it was also over whelming so I've wanted to go back and see Etna again. I've also seen a lot of new wines and producers come out of Etna since then, so it really felt important to get back for several reasons. So now I'm staging to get to the airport at 4 am and board an early flight to Rome and then JFK and on to Portland. I visited 7 wineries and spent almost a week... Continue reading
Posted Nov 13, 2019 at Wines; Tasted!
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I met Roberto in autumn of 2018 and was blown away by his wines and his determination. Last year Roberto's wines had just come into the US so there weren't too many available and it was a really fast trip. A year's time can make a big difference and this autumn Roberto was back with new wines and more of them available! These wines are completely natural but are very precise and beautiful and pure tasting. They're expressive and elegant and real in a combination that is very rare in my experience. These are, to me, very important wines that... Continue reading
Posted Oct 24, 2019 at Wines; Tasted!
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I left Dora and Sanguineto and blasted over to Monte Melino outside Magione in Umbria. It was close and the Alfa was very fast. I arrived a bit early but Marco was there at the wine garage to meet me. We walked over into the vineyards. They were kind of over grown and Marco described it as being like the Amazon. Danilo generally waits until later into the spring to prune in order to delay bud break and avoid some risks of late frost killing the buds. Conestabile della Staffa Vineyards Marco sharpening up some shears for me Danilo pruning... Continue reading
Posted Mar 31, 2019 at Wines; Tasted!
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The lovable wreck that is the Ceppaiolo winery Saturday we were all kind of hung over but we headed out to Ceppaiolo. Danilo let me drive the Audi. It was very fast. the technology is pretty bleeding edge stuff. We got to Ceppaiolo quickly.... Ceppaiolo is a fantastically decrepit falling down little brick work shop with random junk around it such as an old fiat sedan and a moldering camping trailer. It's in a sort of weird suburb area of the town Bastia. Danilo uses it as sort of a test vineyard. There's no family depending on making wine from... Continue reading
Posted Mar 27, 2019 at Wines; Tasted!
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Ribela is hard to describe. It's like trying to describe a dream, because actually that's sort of what it is. Chiara and Daniele together became fed up with Rome and developed a passion for natural wine in around 2010. In 2013 they started working with Danilo Marcucci at Vigneti Campanino up in the mountains of eastern Umbria. As they cut their teeth there they simultaneously started looking for a unique vineyard closer to Rome, the locality they had grown up in. In 2014 they found it: a tiny 2 ha vineyard in a pocket sized valley perched up in the... Continue reading
Posted Mar 24, 2019 at Wines; Tasted!
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I don't even remember how long it is that I've been working with the wines of Omero. It's a been a while, but I first went and met them in the spring of 2017. Unusually I buy sort of direct from the winery which makes the relationship a bit more direct but also makes inventory more difficult. Omero started out farming pigs but soon decided it wasn't for him (the neighbors complained to the authorities about the smell and he felt it wasn't worth the hassle). Serendipitously just as he was having second thoughts about raising pigs the Montefalco Rosso... Continue reading
Posted Mar 24, 2019 at Wines; Tasted!
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Sunday March 17th I drove down through rural Umbria and up some fantastic winding switchbacks to just over the border with Lazio to meet Leo Sassi and check out his new little winery. I have to say that although I got a little lost blasting through those tight winding flowing empty rural roads in a new Alfa Romeo Giulia an listening to opera was really fantastic and I was in a great mood when I finally arrived. 2018 was only Leo's second vintage. I'm not sure how much wine he made this time around but in 2017 it was just... Continue reading
Posted Mar 22, 2019 at Wines; Tasted!
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It seems like everytime I go to Montelulciano it's a dark and rainy night. All two of the times! Actually, it wasn't too late when I arrived, but the sun set and the Agritourismo I thought it was staying at was completely dark. I wandered around for a bit and knocked on the door of another house which was completely unhelpful. Then it started to rain. I resorted to calling Dora Forsoni on the phone and I was shocked that she picked up. Turns out there's this other dumb winery/agritourismo with the name Sanguineto that's just up the street. I... Continue reading
Posted Mar 20, 2019 at Wines; Tasted!
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I don't know anything about these. Well, not quite true. I know that the Vino Rosso I is Aglianico and that the III is Nero Calabrese. They also taste very very wild and zero sulfur. Both are 2013. Beyond that though I don't know; which is very intriguing! Vino Rosso unu III Interesting aroma: it smells like dried cherries, stewed tomatoes, sweet Italian sausage with fennel seed in it....It's very evocative of place and food smells. On the palate the III is pretty big and rustic in a way I really like and (to me) is very old school. There... Continue reading
Posted Mar 12, 2019 at Wines; Tasted!
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This past Monday I taught a seminar for restaurant people about "WTF is Natural Wine". The hand out I created for it ran to 8 pages long for this approx. 2 hour seminar; there was a lot of ground to cover! I spent a lot of time preparing, researching, and reflecting on my time in the wine business. It made me think that there's probably value in me capturing some of those thoughts while they're fresh. A natural fermented zero sulfur red blend from central Umbria Something that's great about the Natural Wine movement is that for nearly every rule... Continue reading
Posted Mar 7, 2019 at Wines; Tasted!
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2018 Vintage 2018! Yes, that's right, it's 55 days into 2019 and I'm already drinking 2018 vintage Bordeaux. And it's really good! Wow! Bergey is made by Gerard Laurent, a retired successful engineer who bought this winery when he sold his company and retired. He applied his empirical skills to the task of making wine and within several years felt he'd seen enough evidence that natural fermentations and more natural farming produced better wine and so he threw himself into making wine with less intervention. This is his least expensive entry level wine that he makes and I think sells... Continue reading
Posted Feb 25, 2019 at Wines; Tasted!
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Cantina marilina is an estate in eastern Sicily inland from Siracusa, by the town of Noto. Angelo Paterno bought and founded the estate but running it has been taken over by his daughters Marilina and Federica. Angelo was a professional wine maker who worked many other places in Sicily before... Continue reading
Posted Jan 23, 2019 at Running Ravenously