Contrada Rampante 2012

2012 was a hot and dry year, with no rain from May to October – one of the warmest summers we’ve had on Etna. At the beginning of October we started tasting the grapes in the vineyards, but everything was quite unripe. The sugar was high while the acidity was low, and yet the plants were highly stressed to the point that the grapes were almost raisinated on the vine. All of the other winemakers harvested early as a result, but we felt the grapes’ pH was still too low and the alcohol too high to follow suite, instead irrigating and waiting for the grapes to mature properly. We risked losing the harvest, but finally the rains came. After just two days, the components – sugars and acidity – came into balance, and so we harvested very quickly. Fortunately, nerello mascalese is a strong vine, and even in the worst years it can be revived

The 2012 harvest in this contrada occurred on the 22nd of October. The wine is light, clean, crisp, and long in the mouth. It is dominated by notes of marzipan, citrus, and mountain fruit aromas and has great aging potential. Very delicate and elegant, it connotes the idea of aesthetics.

Vineyard age: 100 years

Vineyard area: 1.7 hectares

Vineyard density: 8,000 vines per Ha

Vineyard altitude: 1,000 m/3,300 ft a.s.l.

Yield per hectare: 18 Hl/Ha

Fertilization: None

Spraying: Propolis, sulphur, copper, clay, grapefruit seed extract

Vinification: Alcoholic fermentation in stainless steel vats for 10 days

Aging: Malolactic fermentation followed by 18 months aging in large, neutral oak barrels

Bottling: waning moon of April 2014

Production: 3,500 bottles

REVIEWS

“The 2012 Rampante is absolutely striking with pretty aromas and flavors of ripe red fruits, plum and cherries woven together with spices, licorice and a dusty character. It’s beautifully structured with a wonderful silky texture and a long finish, laced with red fruits and spices. This will certainly benefit from a few additional years of bottle age for everything to come together and gain for the complexity. (Best 2018-2028)”

— Joe D’Angelo, International Wine Report, 93 points

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