2015 was a quick and early-ripening year on Etna. It was a year of great vitality within the plants, fertilized in the well-watered soils from the rainy winter, followed by tremendous heat during the summer. The long period of rain in early October weakened the skins, with a nasty cloud hanging and dripping humidity for weeks, leaving dew every morning. The grapes began showing color, ripeness, and sweetness quite, while maintaining their searing acidity, bringing advanced ripening across our vineyards.
The rains brought with them mold and other problems, so to keep them healthy, we returned again to the vineyards after our green harvest and began to pick out the unhealthy grapes from each bunch, one by one. We began to pick some of the cesanese d’Affile and petit verdot on the 10th, finishing on the 17th.
This year brought us austere petit verdot and bold cesanese, with even tannins and color, with a good skeleton, high acidity, and low alcohol. The wines from this vintage are not very concentrated wines, but they are certainly of great longevity.
Vineyard age: 14 years
Vineyard area: 2 hectares
Vineyard density: 12,300 vines per hectare
Vineyard altitude: 900 m/2,900 ft above sea level
Yield per hectare: 17 Hl/Ha
Spraying: Propolis, clay, grapefruit seed extract
Harvest: 10-19 October
Vinification: Fermentation in 30hl steel vats for 14 days
Aging: 6 months in new French oak barriques and 14 months in large cement vessels
Bottling: Waning moon of April 2017
Production: 3,000 bottles
Alison Napjus, Wine Spectator, 91 points: “A saturated, medium- to full-bodied red, with dense tannins wrapped in sappy black cherry and cassis fruit. Hints of graphite and cigar box linger on the grippy finish. Try this with grilled lamb. Petit Verdot and Cesanese d’Affile. Best from 2020 through 2025.”