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Agricola Tiberio Pecorino 2019 (1x75cl)

2017 vintage was awarded 92 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their April 2020 edition regional profile of Abruzzo (see blue link below).

Agricola Tiberio Pecorino 2017 - April 2020 Decanter review

While working for a local winery, Riccardo Tiberio stumbled across a parcel of very old Trebbiano Abruzzese vines in the hillside village of Cugnoli. Though similar in name and vine appearance to the common Trebbiano Toscana, that is where the resemblance ends. This rare grape variety produces subtle, vibrant herb-scented white wines. This chance encounter changed Riccardo Tiberio’s fortunes and that of his family. In 2000, Riccardo purchased those same vines and another 21 hectares which he planted with the indigenous varieties Montepulciano d’Abruzzo, Trebbiano Abruzzese and Pecorino. Riccardo’s passion for wine has been instilled in his children who have since taken over the running of the estate. Cristiana Tiberio is in charge of the winemaking and Antonio takes care of the vineyards. The estate has established a well-deserved reputation for its award-winning Pecorino wines, but their best wine is the Chablisesque Trebbiano d’Abruzzo Fonte Canale, made from the aforementioned 60-year-old Trebbiano Abruzzese vineyard. Today, Tiberio wines are among the best and most authentic wines in Abruzzo.

- Vineyard: cultivated using to the Guyot system at 300 metres above sea level. Organic farming.

- Vinification: cold maceration for 8-10 hours and alcoholic fermentation with indigenous yeasts in steel vats.

- Aging/elevage: 6 months in steel vats.

Pecorino 100%.

Intense aromas and flavours of sage, rosemary, green fig, peach, yellow melon. Full bodied and fresh with a lingering minerality, this is excellent now and will last at least another year.

ABV = 14.0%.

£13.55

Bigi Orvieto Classico Amabile 2019 (1x75cl)

Bigi’s first headquarters was in the former Franciscan monastery of La Trinità in Orvieto, but this was confiscated by the Italian state in 1870! Today they are based in their modern cellars at Ponte Giulio at the foot of the lofty walls of the old and ancient town. The winery with its avant-garde vinification equipment and collection of casks and barrels marries perfectly the modern technical production requirement with age-old tradition.

The signature wine of Orvieto, this wine is produced from hilly vineyards in the Classic DOC zone, enjoying clayey soil and southwest exposure. Vineyards have been cultivated in Umbria, “the green heart of Italy” and a crossroads between the north and the south, between the Adriatic and Tyrrhenian Seas, since Etruscan times. When one speaks of Orvieto, one thinks of a beautiful walled city built on a tuffstone mound by the Etruscans, and known in the Roman era as Urbs Vetus (old city) - but also of the prized white Umbrian wine of which Bigi has been a leading producer for many years.

Orvieto Amabiles are richer than the dry Secco wines and could be described as medium-dry. Don’t let this put you off as this is an ideal bar wine; gentle and soft on the palate with subtle peach and almond fruit and enough freshness to carry that enticing sweet edge. Made from a combination of Trebbiano Toscano (Procanico), Verdello, Grechetto, Malvasia and Drupeggio grapes.

50% Trebbiano, 20% Grechetto, 10% Malvasia Bianca, 10% Verdello, 10% Drupeggio.

The fermentation of wine is stopped before all its sugars are transformed into alcohol, yielding a medium, off-dry taste. The residual sugar level is ~27g/litre, making it classically off-dry.

Fermented and aged in stainless steel. This wine offers a floral bouquet of hawthorn blossom with hints of musk and almond. Dry and full-bodied on the palate, Bigi Orvieto Classico has a lively flavour with a unique aftertaste of white peaches and bitter almonds. 

ABV = 12.0%.

£9.80

Bucci Verdicchio (di Castelli di Jesi) Classico Riserva 2016 (1x75cl)

Awarded 96 points and Outstanding status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their May 2020 edition expert tasting of Verdicchio (see blue link below).

Bucci Verdicchio Classico Riserva 2016 - May 2020 Decanter review

The Bucci family has been growing grapes in the Marche since the 1700s. Current custodian, Ampelio Bucci has 26 hectares of vineyard on this 400 hectare estate, which is cultivated organically. Of these, 21 hectares are Verdicchio, spread over six separate vineyards. The old vines and low yields give wines of great intensity. Consultant winemaker at Villa Bucci is the legendary enologist Giorgio Grai, who has been there for nearly 30 years. He makes wines for ageing and complexity rather than freshness and simplicity.

The Riserva is only produced in the best vintages, with fruit from the oldest vines (between 40 and 50 years old on average) and the best sites. There are six vineyards with different exposures and elevations to obtain more complexity in the final blend of each wine. Yields are kept low and vineyard management is certified organic with no herbicides or pesticides used. Soils are mainly calcareous (limestone), giving minerality to the wine, with around 30% clay, which retains moisture during the hot summers.

Vinification took place in the underground winery, which is naturally cool so refrigeration is generally not necessary. Vinification took place in stainless steel and Slovenian oak barrels of between 50 and 75 hectolitres, that are approximately 70 years old. Different vineyard parcels were vinified separately, aged for two years and then carefully blended before bottling.

100% Verdicchio.

An intense, complex and persistent bouquet of apricot compôte and spice with aromas of honey, beeswax, minerals and flint stone. Full bodied and with great depth, the wine finishes with hints of honey and nuts.

ABV = 13.5%.

£28.85

Bucci Verdicchio (di Castelli di Jesi) Classico Superiore 2018 (1x75cl)

Awarded 95 points and Outstanding status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their May 2020 edition expert tasting of Verdicchio (see blue link below).

Bucci Verdicchio Classico Superiore 2018 - May 2020 Decanter review

The Bucci family has been growing grapes in the Marche since the 1700s. Current custodian, Ampelio Bucci has 26 hectares of vineyard on this 400 hectare estate, which is cultivated organically. Of these, 21 hectares are Verdicchio, spread over six separate vineyards. The old vines and low yields give wines of great intensity. Consultant winemaker at Villa Bucci is the legendary enologist Giorgio Grai, who has been there for nearly 30 years. He makes wines for ageing and complexity rather than freshness and simplicity.

The fruit for this wine comes from six vineyards, each with a different exposure and elevation, which contribute to greater complexity in the final blend. Yields are kept low and vineyard management is certified organic, with no herbicides or pesticides used. Soils are mainly calcareous (limestone), lending minerality to the wine, with around 30% clay which retains moisture during the hot summers. The average age of the vines is 35 years.

Vinification took place in the underground winery which is naturally cool so refrigeration is generally not necessary. The must was fermented in both stainless steel and Slavonian oak barrels of between 50 and 75 hectolitres in size and approximately 70 years old. Different vineyard parcels were vinified separately then carefully blended before bottling.

100% Verdicchio.

Golden yellow in colour, this wine has a layered bouquet with notes of vanilla, butterscotch and almonds. Aromas of mimosa and ripe Golden Delicious apples carry through onto the complex palate, which has a fresh finish. A refreshing mineral edge contrasts with ripe, round flavours of wildflower honey.

ABV = 13.5%.

£15.45

Ca Dei Frati Lugana I Frati 2018 (1x75cl)

The Dal Cero family has transformed their Cà dei Frati property, situated on the southern shores of Lake Garda, into a model Italian estate over the past two decades. Back in 1987, they had 12 hectares of vineyard but now, following the purchase of a large chunk of prime vineyard in 2008, they have over 140 hectares. This increase in quantity has been matched by an increase in quality, and today they remain the best producer in Lugana. The quality of the wines is attributable directly to Igino Dal Cero's obsession with detail. All their fruit is picked by hand; he ensures there is no skin contact as he wants to retain delicate perfumes and enhance the supple texture; he has changed his mind on malolactic fermentation and now inhibits it in order to give the wine the lift he feels it benefits from; and he is now convinced that ageing on lees from end of fermentation gives him greater richness on the palate and the wonderful flintiness on nose that makes this wine so Burgundian in character.

The secret to the success of the Cà dei Frati wines is outstanding vineyards. Most producers in the zone overcrop and train the vines high. At Cà dei Frati, the vines are trained low, on single or double Guyot, newer vineyards have a higher density of planting, and yields are well below the average for the zone. This wine is made from grapes grown on 10 to 35 year old vines. In Lugana, the Turbiana grape is grown on the glacial soils just to the south of Lake Garda. The warmer days give wines with more weight and intensity than those from 60 kilometres to the east. The cool nights, thanks to the moderating influence of Lake Garda, ensures the grapes retain aroma and acidity.

The 2018 vintage began with a long period of dry weather. Rainy weather occurred in May and early June. Hot weather in the summer months allowed the grapes to develop normally. Temperatures throughout the summer remained high; in September it rarely went below 30°C. Yields were slightly higher than usual, and the quality of the grapes was very high.

The must was fermented in temperature-controlled stainless-steel tanks to maximise its fresh fruit character. The wine then remained on lees in stainless-steel tanks for six months before spending two months ageing in bottle before release.

100% Turbiana.

Pale yellow in colour with a concentrated but fresh perfume of white flowers, peaches and ripe lemons. On the palate, it has excellent depth and balance, with lovely richness and a crisp, lively finish.

ABV = 13.5%.

£16.75

Cantina Valle Isarco, Sylvaner Aristos, Alto Adige 2018 (1x75cl)

** PLEASE NOTE: NOT WITH US UNTIL THE END OF OCTOBER (this wine is nowhere in the UK currently) - A SHORT FURTHER DELAY IS ALWAYS POSSIBLE **

Awarded a Platinum medal and 97 points at the 2020 Decanter World Wine Awards (click link for details and review).

For other 2020 DWWA winners, click here.

Located in the Valle Isarco, the most northerly wine-producing area of the majestic mountainous region of Alto Adige. Cantina Valle Isarco is one of the youngest cooperatives here, but has swiftly built a reputation for producing high quality wines of regional distinction. Though the cooperative itself may be young, evidence suggests that Valle Isarco has very old winemaking roots, dating back as far as 500 BC!

The Cantina was founded 1961 by 24 members, at which time it was located in the cellars of Reinthalerhof estate. After a series of unfortunate events, resulting in the devastation of the winery, not once but twice! In 1975, they consolidated their resources to build a brand new, state of the art winery, equipped with the latest technology and modern equipment.

Today the Cantina is made up of 135 members, located across the valley on steep terraced vineyards, ranging from 300m – 950m above sea level. Because of how steep the slopes are, almost all the grapes are hand harvested, ensuring uncompromised quality of fruit. The vignerons benefit from dry, sunny ripening periods and mineral rich soils, ideal conditions for these expressive, aromatic white wines. White wine makes up 95% of their production, working with classic regional varieties such as Kerner, Sylvaner, Pinot Grigio, Pinot Bianco, Müller Thurgau and Gewürztraminer. Although whites are their focus, they have also found success with varietals such as Pinot Noir, Zweigelt, Lagrein and Schiava.

Cantina Valle Isarco’s wines display beautiful freshness, minerality and regional typicity, their entry level range offers fantastic value for money. Their premium Aristos range uses top quality grapes from across the Valley to produce wines with brilliant focus, strong character, depth and elegance.

The grapes selected for the production of this prestigious wine come from the sunny vineyards that surround the Sabiona monastery, known as the “Acropolis of Tyrol”. The severe selection, the controlled production and the delicate ageing in acacia wood casks provide this wine with its unmistakable breeding.

100% Sylvaner (or Silvaner, if you will).

For this wine, see the blue link below for the fiche technique/technical and tasting note from the winemakers themselves. This is for the new 2019 vintage (not in UK or rated by DWWA), but the details are fundamentally the same.

Cantina Valle Isarco, Sylvaner Aristos, Alto Adige 2018 - fiche technique

As DWWA20 said, "Delicate textbook Sylvaner with citrus, nectarine and berry aromas with notes of acacia and nutmeg. Dancing apple flavours, strong spice, mineral notes and lovely acidity; very well made wine that is rich yet fresh". 

** PLEASE NOTE: NOT WITH US UNTIL THE END OF OCTOBER (this wine is nowhere in the UK currently) - A SHORT FURTHER DELAY IS ALWAYS POSSIBLE **

£21.95

Cenatiempo Vini d Ischia Forastera Ischia Bianco 2018 (1x75cl)

As Cenatiempo will tell you, Ischia wine is mountain wine. The vineyards all over the island are influenced by the close proximity to the Tyrrhenian Sea (off the West Coast of Italy, not far from Naples) but also from their elevation – their grapes are grown up to elevations of 600 meters. The winery is run by Pasquale Cenatiempo and his partner, Federica Predoni. They make compelling, focused, mineral-driven wines from the island’s indigenous varieties on the volcanic slopes of Ischia. 

Ischia is situated just off the coast of Naples. Here the soil is volcanic. In fact, the island was formed by a volcano which last erupted in 1302. The winery was founded in 1945 by Pasquale’s father Francesco, who, like Pasquale today, made wine from his own grapes as well as from some of his friends and neighbors throughout the island. Not much has changed over the last 70 years. The wines are still fermented in steel or cement vats with indigenous yeasts and aged in the same vessels. In the vineyards, Cenatiempo farms organically. In fact, for their larger parcels they have begun adapting some biodynamic principles and treatments as well.

Their production is mainly in white wine including a couple of Ischia Bianco blends as well as monovarietal wines of Biancolella and the high-acid, low-octane Forastera. They also make small amounts of red, mainly from Piedirosso, Aglianico and Sciacinosso. The two wines that really illustrate the potential of great winemaking on this small island are the Kalimera Biancolella sourced from an old parcel of Biancolella at high elevation and also the small production Forastera bottling which is more reminiscent of a mountain wine from the north, like a Blanc du Morgex from the Valle d’Aoste, beautifully lean, racy and stony. 

These are small production wines form an artisanal producer making traditional, natural wine from a truly unique terroir of high elevation vineyards and compelling local varieties.

Sourced from estate vineyards in the commune of Lacco Ameno, west-facing terraces at about 200 meters in elevation. (Very) volcanic soil. Hand-harvested at the end of October.

Vinified in stainless steel. Aged in stainless steel.

100% Forastera.

Medium dark yellow. Lively aromas of fresh flowers, pear and apple sauce. Savory, rich, ripe and saline on a long, clean finish that hints at custard cream, grapefruit and eucalyptus. An intense aromatic white wine with generous fruit and a lovely orange peel finish.

ABV = 13.0%.

£22.20

Cenatiempo Vini d Ischia Kalimera Biancolella Ischia 2018 (1x75cl)

The 2017 vintage was awarded a Platinum & Best in Show medal and 97 points at the 2019 Decanter World Wine Awards (click link for details).

For other 2019 DWWA winners, click here.

As Cenatiempo will tell you, Ischia wine is mountain wine. The vineyards all over the island are influenced by the close proximity to the Tyrrhenian Sea (off the West Coast of Italy, not far from Naples) but also from their elevation – their grapes are grown up to elevations of 600 meters. The winery is run by Pasquale Cenatiempo and his partner, Federica Predoni. They make compelling, focused, mineral-driven wines from the island’s indigenous varieties on the volcanic slopes of Ischia. 

Ischia is situated just off the coast of Naples. Here the soil is volcanic. In fact, the island was formed by a volcano which last erupted in 1302. The winery was founded in 1945 by Pasquale’s father Francesco, who, like Pasquale today, made wine from his own grapes as well as from some of his friends and neighbors throughout the island. Not much has changed over the last 70 years. The wines are still fermented in steel or cement vats with indigenous yeasts and aged in the same vessels. In the vineyards, Cenatiempo farms organically. In fact, for their larger parcels they have begun adapting some biodynamic principles and treatments as well.

Their production is mainly in white wine including a couple of Ischia Bianco blends as well as monovarietal wines of Biancolella and the high-acid, low-octane Forastera. They also make small amounts of red, mainly from Piedirosso, Aglianico and Sciacinosso. The two wines that really illustrate the potential of great winemaking on this small island are the Kalimera Biancolella sourced from an old parcel of Biancolella at high elevation and also the small production Forastera bottling which is more reminiscent of a mountain wine from the north, like a Blanc du Morgex from the Valle d’Aoste, beautifully lean, racy and stony. 

These are small production wines form an artisanal producer making traditional, natural wine from a truly unique terroir of high elevation vineyards and compelling local varieties.

100% Biancolella.

Viticulture: Hand-harvested at the end of October. Practicing (but not certified) organic viticulture. Practicing biodynamic. Hand-harvested at the end of October.

Winemaking: Vinified in cement. Aged in cement, spending three months on the lees.

"It's made from the indigenous Biancolella grape variety which few of our judges had ever tasted before - but its golden colour, almost spritzy style, haunting aromas of wild flowers and fragrant scented hay, and its mouthfilling, complex flavour which seem to hint at celery and fennel as well as quince and medlar captivated everyone who tasted it.  A unique, cultural wine of memorable, stealthy charm." (DWWA19 panel review of the 2017)

ABV = 13.0%.

£23.75

Colle Stefano (Collestefano) Verdicchio di Matelica 2018 (1x75cl)

Awarded 96 points and Outstanding status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their May 2020 edition expert tasting of Verdicchio (see blue link below).

Colle Stefano (Collestefano) Verdicchio Di Matelica 2018 - May 2020 Decanter review

Valle Camertina, in the middle of the Marche, is the only valley in the region that is protected from sea winds, and so it enjoys a temperate climate. Collestefano is nestled among private vineyards above Castelraimondo at 450 m above sea level. Its surroundings are nothing but fields. 

The story of the Marchionni family, the owners of Collestefano, is a path of redemption. As a family of farmers, the Marchionnis arrived in the 1960s at Rustano di Castelraimondo, in the valley of Verdicchio di Matelica. This hard-working family managed to acquire, in 1978, the small hillside village that has always been called Collestefano”. In 1998 Fabio Marchionni, son of the owners and a new graduate of oenology, bottled his first vintage of Verdicchio di Matelica. For Matelica that was the beginning of a new era.

Collestefano have always followed organic practices and we also gained the certification in 1995. Their vineyards are part of a broader, self-sustainable, eco-friendly and balanced system.

For this wine:

Vineyard: 18 hectares (37 acres) 10-40 years old, at our farm which is at 420 meters (about 1,400 feeet) above sea level. Organic production since 1995.

Variety: 100% Verdicchio, from Matelica clones chosen by massal selections.

Soil: a mixture of sand, loam, and clay, rich in limestone.

Vine training: mono-bilateral guyot and double-arched cordon.

Harvest: by hand, into small boxes to keep the fruit intact, in October.

Vinification: soft pressing, slow fermentation at low temperature, no malolactic fermentation is performed/allowed. Then left on the lees for 4 month in stainless steel. 

Residual sugar: 1 g/l (ie very dry!)

Production: 110,000 bottles per annum of 75 cl.

It has a bright straw yellow colour with greenish shades, a pure fragrance of vegetal notes of ginger and cardamom and a fruity bouquet with unripe nectarine. The palate combines the typical sparkling crispness of Collestefano and a rich fruity allure. Long-lasting and nuanced finish with a touch of ginger and sweet almond. During its refinement in bottles, it will gain a metallic, honeyed character with an exquisite aftertaste of candy citrus fruit, without giving up its proverbial verve which made it the cult wine par excellence of all its class.

ABV = 12.0%.

£13.25

Colle Stefano (Collestefano) Verdicchio di Matelica 2019 (1x75cl)

The 2018 Vintage was awarded 96 points and Outstanding status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their May 2020 edition expert tasting of Verdicchio (see blue link below).

Colle Stefano (Collestefano) Verdicchio Di Matelica 2018 - May 2020 Decanter review

Valle Camertina, in the middle of the Marche, is the only valley in the region that is protected from sea winds, and so it enjoys a temperate climate. Collestefano is nestled among private vineyards above Castelraimondo at 450 m above sea level. Its surroundings are nothing but fields. 

The story of the Marchionni family, the owners of Collestefano, is a path of redemption. As a family of farmers, the Marchionnis arrived in the 1960s at Rustano di Castelraimondo, in the valley of Verdicchio di Matelica. This hard-working family managed to acquire, in 1978, the small hillside village that has always been called Collestefano”. In 1998 Fabio Marchionni, son of the owners and a new graduate of oenology, bottled his first vintage of Verdicchio di Matelica. For Matelica that was the beginning of a new era.

Collestefano have always followed organic practices and we also gained the certification in 1995. Their vineyards are part of a broader, self-sustainable, eco-friendly and balanced system.

For this wine:

Vineyard: 18 hectares (37 acres) 10-40 years old, at our farm which is at 420 meters (about 1,400 feeet) above sea level. Organic production since 1995.

Variety: 100% Verdicchio, from Matelica clones chosen by massal selections.

Soil: a mixture of sand, loam, and clay, rich in limestone.

Vine training: mono-bilateral guyot and double-arched cordon.

Harvest: by hand, into small boxes to keep the fruit intact, in October.

Vinification: soft pressing, slow fermentation at low temperature, no malolactic fermentation is performed/allowed. Then left on the lees for 4 month in stainless steel. 

Residual sugar: 1 g/l (ie very dry!)

Production: 110,000 bottles per annum of 75 cl.

It has a bright straw yellow colour with greenish shades, a pure fragrance of vegetal notes of ginger and cardamom and a fruity bouquet with unripe nectarine. The palate combines the typical sparkling crispness of Collestefano and a rich fruity allure. Long-lasting and nuanced finish with a touch of ginger and sweet almond. During its refinement in bottles, it will gain a metallic, honeyed character with an exquisite aftertaste of candy citrus fruit, without giving up its proverbial verve which made it the cult wine par excellence of all its class.

ABV = 12.0%.

£13.25

Folonari Pinot Grigio 2019 (1x75cl)

Folonari was founded in 1825 in the Veneto region of northeast Italy by Francesco Folonari. From the very beginning, the founders wanted to create exceptional wines for everyday occasions. Nearly two centuries later, Folonari is enjoyed around the world. The wines are celebrated for their easy-drinking and fruit-forward personalities.

The Italian classic! Cool, crisp and vibrant. Folonari Pinot Grigio perfect for any occasion, whether pairing with dinners out or takeout at home. It is an easy-drinking and versatile glass of white wine, great for days at the beach or barbecues throughout the summer.

Pinot Grigio 100%.

Pale yellow with a fragrant, fresh, floral bouquet. Dry and crisp with notes of green apples. Clean finish.

Pair this with fresh salads, seafood, fried appetizers (like calamari), mozzarella, pasta with pesto or a creamy sauce.

ABV = 12.0%.

£7.60

La Giustiniana Gavi Di Gavi Lugarara 2019 (1x75cl)

The 2018 vintage was subject to a very flattering review by Matthew Jukes in the 13th March 2020 edition of Money Week (www.moneyweek.com) (see blue link below).

La Giustiniana Gavi di Gavi Luagarara 2018 - March 2020 Money Week (Matthew Jukes) review

Donato Lanati, one of Italy's best consultants, began working with La Giustiniana at the beginning of 1998. His indelible stamp of quality has become increasingly evident in recent years. The changes brought in the winery by Lanati are now being matched with the improvements being made in the vineyard, where better grapes are giving purer, richer and better balanced wines. The entire estate covers 110 hectares in the heart of the commune of Rovereto in Gavi, of which 40 are under vine. Two single-vineyard wines are produced, both of which are unoaked so the character of each vineyard shines through.

Lugarara is a single vineyard at around 300 metres above sea level. Soils are grey marl with loose, sandy topsoil. The vines are Guyot trained and planted at a density of 4,000 vines per hectare.

The 2018 vintage began with a good winter, which saw average temperatures and rainfall. Spring and early summer were very rainy, helping replenish water resources depleted in 2017 and bringing forward all vegetative stages. The fresh and humid summer lead to vigorous growth and meant that some thinning was necessary. The hot weather returned from mid-August and allowed the grapes to reach full maturity.

The grapes were hand-picked and gently pressed upon arrival at the winery. They then underwent a cool fermentation in temperature-controlled stainless steel tanks at 16°C. Unoaked, the wine was bottled in the spring following the harvest.

100% Cortese.

Straw-yellow with a greenish hue, the wine's aromas of white fruit, stone fruit and lime zest are immediately beguiling and followed by a subtle yet persistent bouquet of green apples. The palate is well balanced with a fresh acidity and good structure, and almond notes on the finish.

ABV = 12.5%.

£15.15

Nicola Bergaglio Gavi Di Gavi La Minaia 2018 (1x75cl)

Awarded Tre Bicchieri - 2020 by Gambero Rosso.

The 2016 vintage was awarded 91 points by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their February 2018 Italy supplement article on Gavi (see blue link below).

Bergaglio Gavi di Gavi La Minaia 2016 - Feb 2018 Decanter review

Bergaglio's Gavi di Gavi La Minaia is 100% stainless steel fermented and left to rest in the bottle before being released.

100% Cortese.

Pale gold in colour with flashes of diamond brilliance, it has a light, fresh, mineral and citrus bouquet. The palate is crisp and dry, with a hint of ripe pears and a complex array of red and green apples, the finish is mouthwateringly refreshing and lengthy.

ABV = 13.5%

£13.50

Pieropan La Rocca Soave Classico 2017 (1x75cl)

Awarded 95 points and Outstanding status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their May 2020 edition article on Ageing Italian Whites (see blue link below).

Pieropan La Rocca Soave Classico 2017 - May 2020 Decanter review

Pieropan's estate covers 58 hectares of vineyard which are situated on the stony hills of Soave Classico. The Pieropan family has been producing wines in Soave since the 1890s. Indeed, they were the first producer to bottle a wine with the name Soave on the label in the early 1930s. Nino Pieropan took over from his father in 1970 and was the first producer in Soave to make a single vineyard wine, 'Calvarino', in 1971. Nino's two sons, Andrea and Dario, took over the running of the estate in 2017 when Nino fell ill and before he passed away in April 2018. From the 2015 vintage onwards, all Pieropan wines are organically certified.

The grapes were grown in the vineyard of 'La Rocca', which takes its name from the adjacent medieval castle and fortress ("La Rocca") that dominate the town of Soave, just east of Verona. The soil in La Rocca is unique in Soave in that it is a limestone outcrop (the same soil as in Valpolicella Classico) in a sea of basalt. Because of this soil, the family feels they get sufficient ripeness in the Garganega to make a wine solely from this variety.

The 2017 vintage was characterised by a cold winter with abundant rainfall. At the end of April, there was a period of frost. For this reason, blossom only began to appear towards the end of May, with an earlier start on the lower slopes. Sunny weather followed, but frost and drought meant this was a relatively challenging vintage in terms of quantity. Nevertheless, the grapes were healthy and of good quality.

After gentle, whole-bunch pressing, there was a short period of maceration on the skins followed by fermentation at 20ºC in stainless steel tanks and 500 litre oak casks because the family feels that Garganega is too delicate for fermentation in barrique. 60% of the wine then remained in 500 litre oak casks and 40% aged in 2,000 litre 'botti' or large barrels for one year. The wine was then aged for four months in bottle before release.

100% Garganega.

'La Rocca' is golden yellow in the glass, with intense, concentrated perfumes that follow through to the palate. Classic La Rocca aromas of almond essence and honey lead to an elegant and beautifully balanced palate, with notes of vanilla and almond kernel, ripe apricots and exotic fruit. The long finish has a light mineral edge.

ABV = 13.0%.

£26.35

Pieropan La Rocca Soave Classico 2018 (1x75cl)

2017 vintage was awarded 95 points and Outstanding status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their May 2020 edition article on Ageing Italian Whites (see blue link below).

Pieropan La Rocca Soave Classico 2017 - May 2020 Decanter review

Pieropan's estate covers 58 hectares of vineyard which are situated on the stony hills of Soave Classico. The Pieropan family has been producing wines in Soave since the 1890s. Indeed, they were the first producer to bottle a wine with the name Soave on the label in the early 1930s. Nino Pieropan took over from his father in 1970 and was the first producer in Soave to make a single vineyard wine, 'Calvarino', in 1971. Nino's two sons, Andrea and Dario, took over the running of the estate in 2017 when Nino fell ill and before he passed away in April 2018. From the 2015 vintage onwards, all Pieropan wines are organically certified.

The grapes were grown in the vineyard of 'La Rocca', which takes its name from the adjacent medieval castle and fortress ("La Rocca") that dominate the town of Soave, just east of Verona. The soil in La Rocca is unique in Soave in that it is a limestone outcrop (the same soil as in Valpolicella Classico) in a sea of basalt. Because of this soil, the family feels they get sufficient ripeness in the Garganega to make a wine solely from this variety.

After gentle, whole-bunch pressing, there was a short period of maceration on the skins followed by fermentation at 20ºC in stainless steel tanks and 500 litre oak casks because the family feels that Garganega is too delicate for fermentation in barrique. 60% of the wine then remained in 500 litre oak casks and 40% aged in 2,000 litre 'botti' or large barrels for one year. The wine was then aged for four months in bottle before release.

100% Garganega.

'La Rocca' is golden yellow in the glass, with intense, concentrated perfumes that follow through to the palate. Classic La Rocca aromas of almond essence and honey lead to an elegant and beautifully balanced palate, with notes of vanilla and almond kernel, ripe apricots and exotic fruit. The long finish has a light mineral edge.

ABV = 13.0%.

£26.90
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