Cervaro della Sala 2018
Cervaro della Sala, the “flagship” wine of this estate, has earned important recognition and countless fond admirers. It is a blend of Chardonnay and Grechetto grapes, fermented and aged for five months in barriques. It then matures in the bottles for about 10 months in the Medieval cellars of the Castle.
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Castello della Sala vineyards were originally planted to a number of traditional grape varieties, principally Procanico and Grechetto, which continue to be cultivated on the estate, giving proper emphasis and attention to these native grapes in their own selected terroir. Procanico is the Trebbiano clone of Umbria and has been cultivated around Orvieto since time immemorial.
Procanico differs notably from Tuscan Trebbiano in its lesser vigor and yields, its less compact bunches, and a yellow-pink, rather than green, skin. Grechetto is an Umbrian variety with a characteristically thick skin, a deep yellow in color, quite acid in its juice, low-yielding and notably tannic. It produces ample wines which are spicy on the nose, herbaceous with notes of freshly-cut hay, firm in structure, and with a good aging potential and elegance. Non-traditional grape varieties include various clones of Chardonnay – 60 hectares (150 acres) planted between 230 and 340 meters (750 to 1125 feet) above sea level – 20 hectares (50 acres) of Sauvignon Blanc – four hectares (10 acres of Pinot Noir at 340-460 meters -1125 – 1500 feet - above sea level. At the Castello there are also small vineyards parcels planted to Semillon e Gewürztraminer. The picking of the grapes to be utilized for Cervaro, just as in the case of other great white wines, requires particular care. In fact, in order to avoid damaging oxidative processes and the extraction of undesirable tannins, the harvest takes place only during the early hours of the morning in order to insure that the grapes which arrive in the cellars are perfectly healthy and not stressed by high daytime temperatures. The attention given to the crop continues in the cellar thanks to the special design of the structure, conceived to take advantage of the force of gravity, avoiding mechanical intervention on the grapes and the must. The must, after an approximately four hour maceration on the grape skins at a temperature of 50° Fahrenheit (10° centigrade), goes into decantation tanks where it loses, in a natural settling, its impurities before going into oak barrels. Both the regular and the malolactic fermentation takes place in oak; it is the latter which regulates the process and determines how long the wine will remain in barrel. Normally, after five months all the lots of Chardonnay are ready to go into stainless steel tanks and be blended with the Grechetto, which has been fermented on its own and entirely in stainless steel. After bottling, Cervaro della Sala is given an additional twelve month period of bottle aging in the historic Castello della Sala cellars.
The name of the wine, Cervaro, derives from that of the noble family which owned the castle during the 14th century: Monaldeschi della Cervara. The Antinori family purchased the property – the castle and the surrounding land - in the year 1940. The first vintage of Cervaro della Sala, the 1985, was released in 1987. The wine has been awarded various prizes and won much recognition for the consistent excellence of its quality.
A brilliant yellow in color with greenish highlights, the 2014 Cervaro shows a rich, complex, and fresh bouquet of hazelnut butter, vanilla, and white flowers. It is elegant on the palate and extremely savory, crisp, and vibrant. The delicate toasty sensations of the oak barrels blend harmoniously with the structure of the wine, fully bringing out the notes of both tropical and citrus fruit.
Alcohol content: 12,5%
Volume: 75 cl.
Winery: Castello della Sala
Name: Umbria white IGT
Pairing: Seafood, shellfish and vegetable soup.
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