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Wine has been made at Montecalvi since the 1400s. Montecalvi was for centuries part of the Castello di Uzzano estate, at one time owned by Niccolò da Uzzano, a Florentine politician in the Medici era, and latterly owned by Don Briano Carlo Maria Castelbarco-Albani Visconti Simonetta dei principi di Montignano (the Count Castelbarco). It was farmed throughout this period according to the mezzadria system, by which local farmers farmed the estate for, and shared the year’s harvest with, the castello.
Montecalvi became an independent estate in the 1980s and is now owned by the Drake family, owners of Collalto in the Adelaide Hills region of Australia. They have set about upgrading and updating the vineyards, restoring the old vines (they have one of oldest vineyards in Tuscany, planted in 1932) and replanting with indigenous Italian varieties. They are now a certified organic estate and all that they do is with an eye towards sustainable farming in the vineyard and making wines (and olive oil) that are the best reflection of their particular place in their particular part of Tuscany.
The estate is 10 hectares, with about four hectares under vine (and half a hectare under olives).
It is Montecalvi’s intimate size that lies behind the success of their wines. They know their vineyards like the back of their hands, helping them to tend to each, row by row, vine by vine, bunch by bunch. By the time harvest comes around, the grapes arriving in the cellar are the very best that the year can bring.
Montecalvi’s vineyards are among the finest in the Chianti Classico area, on sandstone/ clay soil at an altitude of 250 m above sea level and with ideal south/ south-east/ south-west exposures. They farm their vineyards (and all of their estate) organically and sustainably.
Not having their own white grapes, they carefully selected both the variety, Vermentino, and the local grower so as to ensure quality and character. For this wine, they ferment one third on the skins for around one week, gently submerging the cap to ensure that the skin-contact character of the wine remains subtle and balanced.
Once pressed, this portion is blended back in with the remaining wine and left to complete both alcoholic and malolactic fermentations. After fermentation, the wine is left on heavy lees with occasional batonnage until bottling.
Fresh, vibrant, citrus tones and aromatics, but with unique character and depth.
Wild mushroom risotto.
3-5 years with careful cellaring.