New wine brands appear on the market all the time, but few receive the attention that Sogno Uno did when released in the USA last year. For Sogno Uno, red Italian wine, is produced by porn movie actress Savanna Samson. Her semi-clad image is on the label of the $38 wine and it was virtually impossible to get because publicity surrounding the wine mean the entire shipment of 4,900 wines were pre-ordered by fans.
And having noted critic Robert Parker giving it a rating of 91 points also helped.
Savanna (real name Natalie Oliveros) had the wine made to her specifications by Italian winemaker Roberto Cipresso, and chose a blend of 70% Cesanese, 20% Sangiovese and 10% Montepulciano.
After all the publicity, the label is a letdown. The actual label is just over 3x5 inches (8x13cm) and thus Savanna's picture is just 2 1/4 inches ( 5.5cm) from toes to the tip of her outstretched hands. As a service to my many readers, the scan shown here is larger than life.
My hearty thanks go to my very good cyber-friend Bob Ross in New Jersey, USA, who shipped a (unfortunately empty) bottle to me. Bob's tasting note reads:-
Deep inky red color, deep hue, piercing aroma of fruit and spice with a very interesting earthy quality -- somewhere between chalk and flint -- that little cavity between the nodules of flint and chalk contain that aroma when the chalk is first chipped away; a very strong fruity taste with spice and mineral notes, medium mouth feel, a bit out of balance with strong acidity which moderated only slightly after two hours in the glass; long finish, rather single note and a little boring. Absolutely no aroma lingered in the empty glass. Altogether, an interesting tasting experience, but not a good QPR given the erratic price point. Who could imagine that Virgil would command such interest! 2*.
Cesanese: A red grape of ancient origin found mostly in Latium in Central Italy. aka Bonvino Nero.
The label is truly remarkable, containing the longest known Latin text on a wine bottle. Virgil: "Et te, Bacchus, vocant per carmina laeta, tigique oscilla ex alta suspendunt molia pinu. Kinc omnis largo pubescit vinea fetu, complenture vallesque cavae saltusque profundi et quocumque deus circum caput egit honestum. Ergo rite suum Bacchus dicemus honores carminibus patris lancesque et liba feremus, et cutus cornu stabit sacer hircus ad aram, pinguaia in veribus exta colurnis."
The text is extracted from the Second Book of Virgil's "Georgics", devoted in large measure to growing grapes and olive trees. The references to Octavian in this extract are quite subtle, if they exist at all, and I am certain the winemaker took that fact into full account in choosing the text.
P. VERGILI MARONIS GEORGICON LIBER SECVNDVS
et te, Bacche, uocant per carmina laeta, tibique
oscilla ex alta suspendunt mollia pinu.
hinc omnis largo pubescit uinea fetu, 390
complentur uallesque cauae saltusque profundi
et quocumque deus circum caput egit honestum.
ergo rite suum Baccho dicemus honorem
carminibus patriis lancesque et liba feremus,
et ductus cornu stabit sacer hircus ad aram 395
pinguiaque in ueribus torrebimus exta colurnis.
MIT's translation of the text reads as follows:
Grim masks of hollowed bark assume, invoke
Thee with glad hymns, O Bacchus, and to thee
Hang puppet-faces on tall pines to swing.
Hence every vineyard teems with mellowing fruit,
Till hollow vale o'erflows, and gorge profound,
Where'er the god hath turned his comely head.
Therefore to Bacchus duly will we sing
Meet honour with ancestral hymns, and cates
And dishes bear him; and the doomed goat
Led by the horn shall at the altar stand,
Whose entrails rich on hazel-spits we'll roast.
My compliments on a remarkable accomplishment in the art and literature of the wine label.
Tasted by Bob in July 2007.