IL NATALE offers a selection of our favourite wines for the festive table. Covering all the bases for the holidays, these layered, nuanced wines are sure to create a real sense of occasion.
ORSI SAN VITO
Pignoletto Sui Lieviti 2021
Pignoletto is a grape indigenous to the Colli Bolognesi. Federico harvests this from young, healthy vines planted over clay and limestone. It is fermented in vat, with a little of the must from the same harvest added to the bottle for the second fermentation. It is aged on its lees and never disgorged. A simple, yet extremely refreshing wine with texture and citrus in spades.
Bianco G 2022
From an isolated plot of fifty year old bush vines of Grillo handed down to Nino by his father. These are planted over red sand and terra rossa, just a kilometre from the sea. This spent twenty four hours on the skins before ten months of élevage in a combination of old casks and concrete vats. A vivid yellow, this really shows the pedigree of the site and is compact and elegant with delicate notes of minerals and brine leading to a long, salty finish.
As the name suggests, this vibrant, easygoing wine is the sort of thing you’d dream of drinking with friends at the winstubs that line Alsace’s countryside. It is made up of roughly equal parts of Riesling and Auxerrois from forty year old vines planted over sandy soils at the bottom of Dambach-la-Ville. The grapes were picked early, pressed directly and aged in old foudres until the following spring. Hazy, straw-yellow in glass, this brims with the energy of youth, with delicate notes of white flowers, green citrus and minerals piling on the charm.
This beautiful expression of Pineau d’Aunis comes from vines both young and old, planted over a complex blend of clay, limestone and silex. The grapes were fermented as whole bunches for a couple of weeks before being pressed off to old barrels for a year of élevage. From a cooler vintage, this is lighter, brighter and more delicately perfumed than in recent years. Compact and elegant, it is heady with pink peppercorns and wild strawberries, the fruit framed by the neatest of tannins and a cascade of minerals. This is the grape at its most immediate and compelling.
CLAIRE AND FLORENT BEJON
Pain Perdu 2021
From a small parcel of Cabernet Franc in the village of Beaumont-en-Véron on the right bank of the Vienne. The vines here are forty years old and planted on a slope over limestone and sand. The grapes were fermented as whole bunches in cuve for three weeks before being pressed to a combination of vats, old barrels and amphorae for a short élevage. From a cooler vintage, this shows the variety at its most pretty and perfumed. Delicate, lifted and featherweight on the palate, red fruits, earth and a gentle spice combine to beautiful effect.
Once Upon a Time 2021
From the same parcel of thirty year old vines of Sangiovese as the ‘Se’, this spent a fortnight on skins, followed by ageing in a combination of old oak and chestnut casks. As one might expect it is a little more complex and fine, with a savoury balsamic note that adds real intrigue. A wine that could not be more suited to these cold evenings alongside whatever cut is coming off the grill.