The Primitivo grapes are carefully selected from low-yielding vineyards in the Commune of Maruggio, in an area called “Saracena”, in the Province of Taranto, southern Puglia.
PLANT TRAINING AND DENSITY
The vines are trained in the “Alberello Pugliese” system. Plant density is around 5.500 plants per hectare with an average yield of 1 kg per plant. The plants are an average of 60 years old.
HARVEST AND APPASSIMENTO:
The grapes are carefully picked by hand in early/mid September. The grapes are placed in small wooden crates of 5 kg each. The crates are then placed in the “fruttaio,” a well aerated loft, and are left there to dry at a controlled temperature and humidity for approximately 10 days. During this “appassimento” the grapes will lose – depending on the vintage – up to 40% of their original weight in water. This “drying process” will concentrate their colour, substance and aromas.
After de-stemming, the grapes are not crushed, allowing them to remain intact, reducing damage to the skins and optimizing colour extraction. Fermentation takes place in stainless steel tanks at a controlled temperature of 23-25°C for 8-10 days. Frequent remontage and delestage are carried out during the fermentation in order to achieve soft extraction of aromas and gentle tannins. After racking, malolactic fermentation is induced.
Following malolactic fermentation the wine is racked and 100% is placed in first and second passage French oak barriques for 10 months. Following bottling the wine is left to cellar age for a further 4 months before release.