Vintage report from Torre Raone (Abruzzo)
2019 in Abruzzo was a very positive wine year, especially in the inland and mountain area.
On the opposite, on the Adriatic coast, there has been a strong hailstorm at the beginning of July which caused numerous damages.
Winter was mild, with a few days of cold but with regular rains that nourished the vines during their vegetative rest. Spring and summer were very hot with a lot of unusual sirocco winds for the hills of Loreto Aprutino (a town accustomed to light and cool mountain winds).Fortunately, this did not affect the quality of the grapes, which responded very well to this unusual climate.
With these unusually hot circumstances for Abruzzo, we decided to anticipate the harvest of the whites of 7/10 days.
This allowed us to preserve the freshness and acidity of the Lucanto Trebbiano, Raone Pecorino and Lucanto Cerasuolo wines. On the other hand, for what the Montepulciano d’Abruzzo concerns, thanks also to the mild and dry autumn, we were able to harvest in absolute tranquillity by harvesting the grapes at optimal ripeness.
Wines currently on the market
The Lucanto Trebbiano 2019 is a very delicate wine, easy to drink, dry with a very fine and pleasant aftertaste.
The Pecorino 2019, on the other hand, is more aromatic both on the nose and on the palate, thanks to its typical remarkable aromaticity. Its marked acidity also stands out, which gives character and longevity to this wine.
Lucanto Cerasuolo, vinified in white from early harvested Montepulciano d’Abruzzo grapes, is very delicate and easy to drink. This wine also has an excellent acidity that enhances its freshness.
These three wines share a sensation of pseudo-sparklingness. This characteristic is given by the carbon dioxide produced by alcoholic fermentation. The wines in fact are not decanted but remain in the tank, where the fermentation took place and where we carry out the batonnage procedure.
The wine increases its body thanks to the contact with the noble lees and at the same time binds to the fermentation CO2, giving this very characteristic liveliness.
Montepulciano Lucanto is a wine conceived to be of extreme goodness and easy to drink. To make this happen we process the Montepulciano grapes with extreme care and delicacy. Fermentation lasts a few days and takes place thanks to the indigenous yeasts present on the skins.We then leave the wine to refine and mature in steel barrels first and then in the bottle for about a year.
2018 fully reflects these characteristics: fills the mouth and is easy to drink, a mix that satisfies many palates.
Raone Rosso 2018 instead is a more complex wine, with a more demanding structure and a higher alcohol content.It was born from the curiosity to combine a typical grape like Montepulciano d’Abruzzo with two international grape varieties like Merlot and Cabernet. (60% -20% -20%)Before being bottled it underwent a very light passage in wood, about 6 months. In the bottle it refines for 6 months.With this procedure we are able to obtain a round and soft wine with a fine and delicate bouquet.
Even more complex is the San Zopito 2016.
The grapes (Montepulciano d’Abruzzo 100%) are carefully selected and ripened in the vineyard until the end of October.
Fermentation took place by indigenous yeasts for two weeks. After fermentation, the wine rested for 9 months in steel before being transferred to French oak barriques for 12 months.
After this period of maturation, the wine was bottled and left to rest and refine for a further 9/12 months in the bottle. The taste is very fine and elegant, with great structure and high complexity.
It is certainly the wine that best represents Abruzzo and the Abruzzo people, defined as a strong and gentle people, just like San Zopito.
The 2020 will certainly not be remembered for its wines (unfortunately). We in our own small way, with our bottles on your tables can only try to make this year less bitter. Without staff in March and April, my father and I managed to keep the company going amidst enormous difficulties. It was very hard to stay in the countryside, among the vineyards, and not have orders to fulfil, and even now after the harvest we are in the same situation, with world catering practically at a standstill.
For us winegrowers, however, the 2020 vintage is still to be judged. The climate was very good and very hot, it was even not very rainy during the winter. It will still have to bear its fruits and although it may have been a painful year, we have tried our best to make of 2020 a good vintage.
Grapes in the vineyards of Torre Raone
Dante and Luciano di Tizio
Harvest by Torre Raone