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5218 Lawton Avenue
Oakland, CA 94114


Oliver McCrum Wines has been importing small production Italian wine and distributing to fine retail and restaurant establishes throughout California since 1994. Over time, our portfolio of producers has steadily grown to over 45 producers from 15 different regions of Italy. We look for typical Italian wines with clarity and freshness, usually made from indigenous Italian grape varieties using clean, transparent winemaking techniques and no obvious use of oak. 


A quotation from Gilberto Boniperti's web-site: ' 'When you don't know what to do, go out in the vineyards, there's always something to do there!' I would never have imagined that phrase, repeated so many times by my grandfather, would become one of his great teachings, and a cardinal rule of my philosophy of work and of life: dedication to my vineyards, many hours of manual labor, attention to the details of vinification and finally patiently waiting for the necessary maturation of my wines.' Gilberto combines this attention to the traditional work of a wine-grower with the technical knowlege gained by studying enology at the acclaimed school in Alba, as well as occasional pieces of advice from our friend Cristiano Garella, who used to work at Sella but is now consulting to a number of small producers in northern Piedmont. The results are as you would expect, well-made, expressive, thoughtful wines made from Nebbiolo and the local Vespolina (a relative of Nebbiolo). He is a producer to watch.

Rosato 'Rosadisera'

I take 'Rosadisera' to mean 'evening rosè,' which is the best idea I've heard all day. Nebbiolo Rosè from northern Piedmont is a relatively new kind of wine, but this tastes like a long-standing classic; beautiful pale pink color, aromas of wild strawberry, watermelon and pomegranate, fresh acidity, both refreshing and deeply flavorful. This is 100% Nebbiolo, made by 'saignèe' with one day of skin contact, fermented in stainless steel and bottled in the late spring. Grilled salmon, roast chicken, many pork dishes...

Vespolina 'Favolalunga'

Ian d'Agata, in his authoritative book Native Wine Grapes of Italy, describes Vespolina as ' of Italy's best native grape varieties...' and this part of northern Piedmont is its home. Medium red, not that different in color from Nebbiolo, of which it is a relative; spicy aroma and flavor (cinnamon, black pepper), cedar/sandalwood, red-fruited, mid-weight, really useful table wine. I will be drinking quite a bit of this.

Nebbiolo 'Carlin'

Mid-weight everyday Nebbiolo; beautiful mid-ruby color, rose-petals, red fruit, very fresh, some mineral notes, aged entirely in stainless steel. I had this with pizza recently and it was excellent but this will go with all sorts of foods. If you drink Pinot Noir much you should be drinking this too, similar weight and similar food matches.

Boniperti Website