domenica 16 febbraio 2014

Barolo Paiagallo vs. Stonyridge Larose Waiheke Island

Waiheke Island is an island in the Hauraki Gulf of New Zeland about 18 km from Auckland. Maritime climate with ancient soil structure alluvial valleys with layers of clay and ancient rock strata from 100's years old Jurassic era with heavy cracking which encourages deep root penetration.
Waiheke Island is strongly influenced by the sea. The ocean acts as fan and an insulator, there is a warm effect in winter and a cool effect in summer which allows late varieties to ripen fully over an extended period. Thus the blending is suitable for the terroir driving, different varieties permitted flower and ripen at different times, which means that one bad frost or heavy shower is unlikely to ruin an entire crop.
Stony Ridge Vineyard La Rose 2001 Bordeaux blend with 56% of Cabernet Sauvignon 

La Rose is the name from a single spot where this wine comes from, also is a tribute to the rose, the most  aromatic, colorful, intense and beautiful of all flowers.
The yields are 20 hectoliters per hectare, grapes are hand picked, crushed and de-stemmed and pumped into stainless-steel. Two week maceration before basket-pressed, malolactic fermentation is completed in barrel and the wine aging in french and american barriques for over a year, racked regularly.
The wine show on the nose dark berries, juice plum and licorice, sweet spice and cedar oak, tobacco all well composed. Elegant chalky fine tannins ripe dark berry with a long finish in the palate. Chalky and sandy minerality.

Paiagallo cru from Giovanni Canonica in Barolo, a wine for the naturalist movement, almost impossible to find even in Italy all his production land in Japan. I was lucky enough to try it last night in the restaurant where I work. Close to 2 hectare of vines make just 5000 bottle of wine.
Giovanni Canonica is a perferct "tradizionalista" of the Langhe region, his Barolo fermented up to 30  days and aging in large cask slavonian italian big barrel.
The 09 wasn't an easy vintage for the Barolo makers however Gianni turned it into a beautiful gem of wine  
The nose was packed and close with great red cherry and strawberry under spirit very tar, the minerality attacked my nose with its reductive aroma of iron and stony, violet and licorice and some crush warm leaves. The palate the tannin was firm and sturdy sometime pungent and balsamic great finesse and with a line of power.
single cru Paiagallo on the heart of Barolo district just outside of the town of Barolo, only wild yeast and no temperature control.


sabato 1 febbraio 2014

Australian Natural wine movement.

Domaine Lucci
Anton Van Klopper is the man behind this amazing pinot noir from Australia, it is one of the most creative wine makers in the Australian wine industry. Very quickly became one of the leader of the fashion wine natural movement of this amazing country. In 2002 with his family purchased a property in  Adelaide hills adopting biodynamically principle using only sulphur at the bottling. He extensively worked in other country Germany, New Zealand and Oregon especially at domaine Serene in U.S.A. where he understood the importance of the terroir driving. On his website  "A Winemakers must have an intimate knowledge of every part of the vineyard"

Pale in color great viscosity full of sour red fruit on the nose, intense freshness drive by lovely acidity. Spice ginger and forest floor, damp earth and great finesse in the middle palate.
A really great wine
Also I had an orange wine made by him from Sauvignon blanc with an extensively contact skin more than a great wine an interesting one

Orange in color, with sexy texture. Lightly oxidation with sherry quality notes, fresh sea air and mineral. Bruised white peach and cordial elderflower, soaked grass with brandy nuttiness a fun drink, medium plus tannin….

                                                                  William Downie
                                                   A winemaker with a pinot noir heart

 One of the guy for me represented the natural wine making in Australia is William Downie a young winemaker located in Yarra Valley in the state of Victoria near Melbourne.
He has been working for a several year in Burgundy and in 2004 through 2005 was senior winemaker a Domaine Hubert Lignier  in Morey saint Denis, after that was assistant winemaker at the famous winery in Yarra Valley De Bortoli. In 2003 started to make his own wines from pinot noir grapes sorted in different part of the state of Victoria:
From Gipsland an earthy pinot without sulphur on 20 years old vines dry grown, whole bunch fermentation with a pleasant perception of volatile. The problem of this wine doesn't last long after open the bottle but an interesting project.
From Mornighton Penisula a bright crispy Chambolle Musigny style with sour fruit and great acid structure and sea salt palate.
From Yarra Valley a sturdy pinot with a super texture without fat, silky with plenty of fine grain tannin but not too blocky. Red berry aroma.
Last project of this guy is a winery called Thousand Candels with more people involved in the actual business. The first vintage is a Syrah predominately with some pinot noir and Sauvingon blanc in the blend; whole bunch and carbonic maceration light body syrah very original with a strong hint of anise.
Some shots in the vineyard below:
Mac Forbes Yarra Valley Victoria
Forbes is an other interesting pinot noir grower from the Yarra valley with the sensibility from the Lieu-dit, his making pinot noir in this region like Benjamin Leroux in Cote de Beaune. His approach on wine making is just respecting the grapes and carry out to the bottle a very simple approach with a great effect:
The 2011 pinot is extremely original mostly Morgon cote de puy if that make sense.