This 300 hectare estate, created by the Moretti family of Bellavista, is situated in Suvereto in the Val di Cornia. When Vittorio Moretti, together with his daughter Francesca, set out in search of a property in the Maremma in 1997, they asked Attilio Scienza, Italy's most celebrated viticultural professor and consultant, to help them find the best spot. Scienza came up with Petra (the name is derived from the Latin for stone, or 'pietra' in Italian), which is to the south east of Bolgheri and inland from, although facing, the sea. The estate now has 94 hectares of vineyard across three separate plots, which surround a splendid modernist winery built by the Swiss architect Mario Botta. Francesca Moretti, CEO of Bellavista and Petra, and newly appointed winemaker Giuseppe Caviola, are working to ensure that the quality of fruit arriving in the winery is being captured in the finished wines. In the vineyard, they are in the process of organic conversion, while the gravity-fed winery has been designed to ensure as gentle a treatment of the grapes, must and wine as possible.
The soil at Petra is perfectly suited to growing Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. The Merlot is elegant and supple, grown on the cooler, hillside sites, while the Cabernet is grown on the well-hydrated, less fertile flatter land.
The grapes were transported to the winery in plastic crates of up to 17kg. Natural yeasts were used for fermentation. Vinification took place in stainless steel and large oak vats at controlled temperatures. Maturation took place in medium and light toast French oak 'barrique' (Allier, Nevers and Tronçais, 50% new, 50% second passage), where malolactic fermentation occurred. The wine was then aged for 18 months in oak and a further 18 months in bottle before release.
Bright ruby red in colour. The bouquet is full of red fruit, with hints of black cherry and blueberry. The wine has excellent balance and length with a tangy finish of blackberry and dried fruit.