Tenuta La Viola "Il Colombarone" Romagna Sangiovese Superiore '19
Sangiovese is known for being one of Italy’s most noble grape varieties. While Brunello di Montalcino and Chianti Classico get most of the hype, the Sangiovese of Romagna can be every bit as complex and ageworthy. It’s also possible to taste several different bottling of Sangiovese from the same producer and experience different nuances based on terroir or style. Such is the case with the fantastic range of Sangiovese from Tenuta La Viola, a small family producer founded in 1962 and based in the village of Bertinoro, just to the west of the city of Cesena, in Romagna.
The focus here is on classic-style wines that reflect the region and a respect for the environment. Since 1999 the vineyards have been certified organic, and 2018 marks the first vintage produced from biodynamic principles. Those vineyards are situated on rolling hills that face toward the Adriatic. On the other side are the Tosco-Romagnolo Apennines, with a resulting microclimate that brings in cooling breezes that helps bring balance to the wines. The soil is a mixture with clay, limestone, as well as rich with ancient marine sediments. One of the notable attributes to Sangiovese from Romagna is its structure.
Stefano Gabellini is proud of his wines, and when he takes you on a journey through each wine, he often talks about “Il Colombarone” as the wine that most typically represents La Viola and Bertinoro. First produced in 1998, “Il Colombarone” is made entirely of Sangiovese grown in two vineyards in Bertinoro. The grapes are hand harvested, with a careful selection both in the vineyards and cellar. Fermentation is in stainless steel, with repeated crushing for 14 to 21 days. The wine was aged in a mix of 55% stainless steel and 45% used barrique for six months.
This is classic Romagna Sangiovese, with a Bertinoro twist. Cherry, floral, and savory notes on the nose lead into a full-bodied wine on the palate. The tannins are chewy and well balanced with the fruit. We highly recommend decanting this wine for an hour before serving, and trying it alongside meats such as grilled lamb chops or braised beef cheeks. This is a wine to stock up on for now and for later, as we expect it to improve in bottle over the next few years.
Tenuta La Viola
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