In a nutshell: An intense, fresh tasting and silky Grappa from Bepi Tosolini of Udine in norteast Italy.
The lowdown: Grappa is a well known Italian grape spirit. Unlike brandy, which is distilled from wine, here the pomace, or pressed pressed skins, pulp and stems left over after winemaking are what's distilled. Originally made to use up leftovers and seen as something of a rough and ready spirit it has, in recent years, been given a quite a makeover by quality distillers such as Bepi Tosolini. They make quite a range of Grappas using different different grape varieties; for this one Moscato (or Muscat) is the base and it's distilled in small batches in artisanal pot stills. Intense, slightly musky aroma with a touch of honey, blossom and mint it's quite zingy on the palate with violets followed with a delicate and persistent grapey finish. Highly refreshing and delicious and a good example of a quality, premium Grappa.
The history of the Bepi Tosolini Distillery began in 1943, when Friulian Bepi Tosolini, born in 1918, a passionate connoisseur of his land and his customs, a strong supporter of his region and its products, decided to create a different grappa. Transforming a simple, humble and very often rustic and rough distillate in a product intended for a refined and demanding public. In the 1940s, believing that grappa, a poor product of the Friulian peasant tradition, could achieve popularity on a wider stage. Bepi Tosolini has invested in this dream, in the 1950s building a new distillery in Udine and joined it the largest grappa cellar in Italy.