OVERALL TRENDS IN THE 2018 HARVEST

The winter season began normally with significant cold peaks, particularly in the first two weeks of February reaching -13 degrees Celsius. An unstable spring season followed with erratic temperatures and considerable rainfall. Summer saw much rain and a few hailstorms, which damaged some areas of the Poggiarso and Moci vineyards. The tail-end of summer was characterized by above average temperatures and warm winds with temperatures differing substantially between day and night, thus allowing the grapes to completely ripen and the best aromatic notes to fully develop.

The harvest began on August 29th with Pinot Noir from the Cimitero and Fornace plots. This grape was harvested for about 15 days simultaneously with Sangiovese, destined to be used in the production of sparkling wine and rosés (in particular, in the areas of Meletino, San Piero and Poggiarso). In the same period, albeit much earlier than years past, the Vermentino from San Piero was also harvested.

In the second half of September the first Merlot grapes, a selection from the Moci and Parabuio vineyards, were harvested followed by the sub-areas of Casi, Spaltenna, San Piero and Meleto. The last Merlot grapes were harvested on September 26 from a selection of the Casi Cannaio plot and the Casi Lago plot. The first taste of the Merlots proved overall very structured and powerful, with an above average alcohol content, even if not fully ripe on the nose. The wines produced from the Parabuio and Casi Cannaio grapes are particularly interesting, reaffirming the qualitative potential of these two vineyards.

Weather conditions combined with an abundant spring and summer rainfall led to the assumption that the vintage would be defined by very low sugar concentrations, as confirmed by the first Sangiovese harvested. After mid-September, however, an exceptional change in weather conditions brought an increase in average temperatures and intense daytime winds, driving the phenolic maturation and pushing the potential alcohol levels of the Sangiovese passed the standard. 

The harvest was completed on October 17.

From a qualitative point of view, there were some flawed grapes coming from different areas, in particular Moci, Poggiarso, areas heavily affected by hail, Casi Lucarelli and Noccioli, San Piero Cardani and Cimitero Vecchio. Of remarkable quality, however, were the grapes coming from the entire Trebbio area and the selections of San Piero Pozzo, Poggiarso Sud and Casi Alberello – producing very different wines from the other but with structure and personality that bode well for future Reserves and Grand Selections. Other very promising wines are the Malvasia Nera from Camboi, harvested and selected on October 9th, and the Cabernet Sauvignon (in particular the grapes of Casi Cannaio and San Piero), currently still on the skins.

The last grapes harvested were the selected Trebbiano of San Piero, used in the production of vin santo, hanging now in the drying room along with red varietals also drying and used in the production of Governo.