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Producer: Michele ChiarloGrape Varieties: 100% CorteseOptimum Drinking: Within 10 yearsWine Style: Dry balanced fragrant and slightly spicyAlcohol by Volume: 12.5%Closure: Natural CorkCountry: Italian
Michele Chiarlo is one of Piedmont's truly great winemakers. The family owns 60 hectares of vineyard in three of the classic growing areas - Langhe, Monferrato and Gavi and have access to a further 50 hectares through long-term relationships with their growers. Michele has insisted on total quality since his first vintage in 1956, an ethos which his sons Stefano and Alberto adopt today. The Chiarlo style is highly elegant, they make complex wines that can age for decades but above all reflect their provenance - some of the finest vineyard sites in Piedmont.
2017 saw a mild winter with less than average rainfall, which led to limited soil water reserves. Mild spring temperatures set the growing season off early; however an extremely unusual night frost occurred during April, which led to significant frost damage in some areas. This has not occurred on this scale for 50 years. The summer was dry, temperatures stabilised and the growth cycle continued. Harvest took place earlier than usual, although the yields were down the quality of the remaining grapes was high.
Rovereto is a small, but privileged sub-zone of Gavi recognised as one of the best microclimates for the production of the Cortese grape. The vines are grown in mostly calcareous clay-marl soils of volcanic origin, which are rich in iron and magnesium. The vines undergo a strict pruning programme and a green harvest to keep yields low.
The grapes underwent cold maceration before being pressed in order to retain the integrity of the aromas. Fermentation took place in small temperature controlled stainless steel tanks with natural yeasts from the same vineyard. The wine rested on its fine lees in tank for four months, adding texture and complexity to the resulting wine, followed by a further four months' maturation in steel vats preserving the purity of fruit.
From one of the best sub-zones in Gavi, the aromas are intense and elegant with hints of white flowers, golden apples and mineral notes. On the palate it is well structured, balanced and fragrant with savoury notes and incredible length on the finish.
A great match for sushi, seafood dishes and Asian cuisine.
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