JUNE WINE BOX: LUCCA, THE TUSCANY YOU DON'T EXPECT (Stop #27), led by sommelier Simone Vergamini
Sardi Farm - Lucca
Fattoria Sardi is a young company located near the city of Lucca, led by Mina and Matteo, a couple in work and in life. The two, with their studies and work experience in France, started their personal wine "revolution" by regenerating the family vineyards. The organic and biodynamic management of the vineyards as a philosophical choice finds a natural expression thanks to the favorable soil and climate conditions. The vineyards benefit from constant ventilation from the nearby Tyrrhenian Sea, while the Apennines guarantee water resources during the growing season, as well as excellent temperature variations between day and night. The variability of the soils, with a predominantly clayey matrix and rich in minerals, is the other determining element in terms of quality and uniqueness. In the owned vineyards, vines such as Vermentino, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon find maximum valorisation, with a focus on Sangiovese, present in all the reds and the fundamental basis of the excellent rosés which in terms of number of bottles are the true protagonists of the range of Fattoria Sardi wines.
Tenuta Mariani – Massaciuccoli (LU)
Tenuta Mariani is located in Versilia, in the town of Massaciuccoli, a stone's throw from the lake of the same name. The careful work and passion of the family, with the contribution of the oenologists Lamberto Tosi and Julian Gout, give life every year to a precious and limited production of wine and extra virgin olive oil, appreciated far beyond the regional borders. The vineyards, in organic conversion, and located in the best plots of the area which run from sea level up to 200 meters above sea level, are heterogeneous in terms of exposure and soil composition. Taking advantage of the characteristics of the area and the vineyards available, the owner Ido Mariani managed to realize the dream of producing sparkling wines - both with the Charmat method and above all with the classic or "Champenoise" method - after learning the secrets from the masters in Champagne. Incredible to think of a production of sparkling wines obtained with grapes grown at sea level, but the results prove Ido right and his dream has today been transformed into a brilliant reality: thanks to his great passion, strong resourcefulness and terroir unique.
Fattoria La Torre – Montecarlo (LU)
The wine production of Fattoria La Torre has been documented in the historical archives since 1887. A stone's throw from the splendid medieval village of Montecarlo (LU), this small but ambitious winery boasts a favorable position in terms of altitude and orientation of the vineyards. The aim of the owners, the Celli family, is to constantly improve the quality of their wines, investing in the renewal of the vineyards and in the technical equipment of the cellar. The vineyard area is approximately 6 hectares, in which vines such as Vermentino, Cabernet Sauvignon, Petit Verdot and especially Syrah find ideal conditions. No chemicals are used in the vineyards but only copper and sulphur, and the process of conversion to organic is underway. The company's historic cellar was rebuilt in the old premises and completely renovated thanks to the introduction of the most sophisticated winemaking equipment. The limited extension of the vineyard surface and the careful operations in the cellar guarantee a constant improvement of the wines produced by Fattoria La Torre, bringing them to levels of absolute excellence.
Toscana Rosato, Fattoria Sardi (drink within 2 years)
Fattoria Sardi's Rosé is produced with Sangiovese grapes harvested by hand in organic vineyards, combined with a small percentage of aromatic white berries. After soft pressing, a part of the must is left in contact with the skins for a few hours, while the remainder is obtained through bloodletting (i.e. taking some must from the maceration tank in which a red wine is being prepared and vinifying it in white). The fermentation and subsequent refinement in contact with the noble lees are carried out in steel.
Thus was born this wine which appears in the glass with a bright cherry pink color and which conquers thanks to the perfect fusion of the notes of spring flowers, fruits and citrus fruits. On the palate the proportion of sensations is impeccable and the notable flavor given by the soils rich in mineral substances stands out. Fattoria Sardi thus manages to give us a Sangiovese in a new version, admirably capable of telling the story of the territory of origin.
Serve at 10-12°C.
Pairing: a Rosé to drink as an aperitif on a warm summer evening, which goes well with pizza and white meats at the table.
Charmat method sparkling wine “Sabbia e Mare”, Tenuta Mariani (to be drunk within 1 year)
A more appropriate name could not have been chosen for this very pleasant sparkling wine produced with grapes that feed on sea water.
The Chardonnay, Vermentino and Sangiovese grapes used for the production of this sparkling wine are grown in the vineyards of Villa Borbone, on the sandy soils 500 meters away from the Tyrrhenian Sea. The varieties are harvested and fermented separately in steel at a controlled temperature, to subsequently undergo a period of refinement on the fine lees for 6 months. Once the ideal blend has been composed, which is different each year in terms of percentages, the second fermentation is carried out in an autoclave with the Charmat or Martinotti method.
A fragrant and lively sparkling wine that presents itself in the glass with a brilliant straw color. On the nose the fruity and floral notes are embellished with suggestions of the Mediterranean scrub and above all with a marked saline minerality. Fresh and decidedly savory tasting, with rare shelf life.
Serve at 8-10°C.
Pairing: perfect for a summer aperitif, it is the ideal companion in the company of raw seafood and shellfish.
Montecarlo Vermentino, Fattoria La Torre (drink within 2 years)
Vermentino is certainly one of the most important white grape varieties in Tuscany, present for centuries also in the vineyards of the area, testimony to the territory and the local Montecarlo DOC denomination, one of the smallest in Italy. Fattoria La Torre harvests the best bunches by hand and subjects them to soft pressing. The winemaking and aging operations are carried out in steel at a controlled temperature, so as to maintain the aromas and pleasant freshness of the taste unaltered.
A white with a bright straw color, which expresses intense sensations of white flowers and fruits, sweet almond and white pepper on the nose. In the mouth it is elegant, fresh and in its aromatic development it confirms the impressions given by smell.
Serve at 8-10°C.
Pairing: this Montecarlo Vermentino DOC, in addition to possessing undoubted organoleptic qualities, is the perfect white for an aperitif, which goes well with first and second courses of seafood cuisine.
Toscana Rosato "Le Cicale", Fattoria Sardi (drink within 4 years)
It takes shape starting from Sangiovese grapes harvested by hand in organic vineyards, combined with a small percentage of Vermentino. The maceration in contact with the skins has a different duration depending on the vintage, but is always aimed at obtaining a color that is not too pronounced. Fermentation (with indigenous yeasts) and maturation are carried out in wooden vats, resulting in a beautiful olfactory complexity and an important body.
A Rosé of medium color with onion skin nuances, which gives the nose aromas of small wild red fruits, citrus fruits and aromatic herbs, on a slightly spicy background. When tasted, it is full-bodied, elegant and balanced, enlivened by the freshness and typical flavor that distinguishes the wines of the area.
Serve at 12-14°C.
Pairing: a "superior" Rosé, with a strong territorial connotation and intriguing gastronomic versatility: pair it with fish-based second courses and white meats, even delicately spiced ones.
Brut Classic Method Sparkling Wine “Segreto”, Tenuta Mariani (to be drunk within 2 years)
The vineyards located on the hills overlooking the Tyrrhenian Sea and the plots located near Lake Massaciuccoli provide Tenuta Mariani with Pinot Noir and Chardonnay grapes perfect for the production of "Segreto". The manual harvest is followed by soft pressing and alcoholic fermentation of the base wines in steel at a controlled temperature. Once the ideal blend has been composed (which sees a clear prevalence of Pinot Noir), the second fermentation in the bottle begins with the addition of the liquer de tirage . Once the second fermentation is complete, the rest on the yeasts lasts a minimum of 24 months before disgorgement.
The result is a sparkling wine with an intense straw color with golden hues, brilliant and characterized by a fine perlage . On the nose it offers aromas of melon, white currant, apricot, quince and star anise, which pave the way for sensations of wisteria, "marine" mineral notes and the fragrances of white bread. Fat, round mouth, which highlights a creamy bubble and an aromatic trail that is first citrus and then balsamic and salty.
Serve at 8-10°C.
Pairing: a great test by Ido Mariani, demonstrating that the path taken is the right one, which translates into a versatile sparkling wine at the table, in particular alongside the first and second courses of seafood cuisine, up to and including pairings with white meats and pizza.
Toscana Rosso Esse, Fattoria La Torre (to drink immediately or keep in the cellar for up to 8 years)
The presence of grapes of French origin on the Montecarlo hill is demonstrated by historical sources from the 19th century. Among these noble berries, Fattoria La Torre has entrusted Syrah with the task of creating its most important wine in terms of quality: the Toscana Rosso “Esse”. The best bunches grown in a particular vineyard facing east are subjected to careful selection and delicately pressed. The alcoholic fermentation takes place in steel at a controlled temperature and is followed by maturation in French oak barriques of various ages for 18 months, then refinement in the bottle for a year.
Esse has a deep ruby color with purple hues even after years and amazes the nose with its refined olfactory profile: fleshy currants and raspberries, violets and roses, aromatic herbs and delicate spices, on a background of liquorice and tobacco. Elegant tasting, juicy and long, with tannins of rare finesse. A great red capable of winning the most important national and international awards, which testifies to the perfect adaptation of Syrah to the territory.
Serve at 16-18°C.
Pairing: to accompany first and second courses of land cuisine, such as tagliatelle with meat sauce and sliced beef.