Here at Xtrawine, we demonstrate our passion for the truly amazing wines that we offer through our website by highlighting the ones that we believe are deserving of attention from our many wonderful visitors. By now we hope that a few of the people who are reading this will have already taken a look at some of the similar pieces we have produced over the course of the last few months that highlight some of the great producers, both large and small, throughout the world and some of the spectacular wines that they are capable of producing.
This week, we will be taking a look at a winemaker that perhaps doesn’t quite have the reputation that it deserved, certainly amongst the international audience. Locals have known about the passion and quality behind the wines produced by Stefano Amerighi for many years though, so here we thought that we would shine a spotlight on one of the best wines that the company produces, in addition to taking a look at its history and how it came to become one of the most respected, if not the most well-renowned, producers of Syrah in the world.
Stefano Amerighi points out that his vineyards were born of true passion, as he struggled with his burning desire to craft truly remarkable examples of Syrah until, finally, he has all of the pieces in place to help him make his dream into a reality. Combining the farming knowledge that he had inherited from his family through the ages with a passion for making wines and an industry knowledge that few are capable of surpassing, he has set about creating amazing wines that not only rival competitors in terms of taste and quality, but also demonstrate passion for the land where they are produced.
Making use of the practices of biodynamics, Stefano Amerighi ensures that the quality of the land where his vines are grown remains exceptionally high. However, the initial task was to find an area that already had the quality needed in order to grow amazing grapes. After much searching, Stefano Amerighi identified an area of Chiuso di Cortana named Poggiobello di Farneta to start his dream. The gorgeous area contains two well-exposed hills to the south and south-east, which proved ideal for his vine growing ambitions, while also enjoying stunning views of a grove to the south, a ridge to the east and a beautiful pebbly street to the west that gives the entire area a rustic quality that makes it a true joy to explore.
Having already fallen in love with the land, Stefano Amerighi tempered his enthusiasm slightly by making sure to carry out detailed climatic and geographical research so that he could be certain that the land would be capable of producing grapes of immense quality. After confirming that the terroir was suitable for bedding out clones and allowing him to select the perfect grapes for his Syrah, he committed to the area.
With this purchase, Stefano Amerighi understood that he now bore immense responsibility for the land that would be his livelihood, especially if he was to help it reach its full potential. As such, the running of his vineyards abide by the dictate of natural viticulture and the methods of biodynamic agriculture that an increasing number of winemakers have been adopting in recent years. The pruning and working of the ground are dictated by the lunar and planetary phases, demonstrating a high level of detail in work that allows for the grapes to enjoy ideal growing conditions.
Using copper and sulphur in minimal quantities, while avoiding the man-made chemicals that may have a negative effect on the terroir, Stefano Amerighi also makes use of maceration the natural infusions to ensure that the soil is enlivened and that the structure of the land is maintained, even during the cold seasons when it is most at risk of being damaged.
All of these hard work is completed with the aim of ensuring that the grapes grown at the vineyard are brought to maturation and that they are completely free of the “corrective” and chemical products that many established winemakers still make use of.
Following de-stemming, a part of the grapes are left whole and lightly foot-pressed before being manually pressed into small concrete vats that don’t make use of pumps. Fermentation is allowed to occur naturally, without the use of the selected yeasts and sulphurs that many producers use to control the process. Finally, after a 14 month refining process, Stefano Amerighi’s wines are bottled without filtration or stabilisation.
It is a process that has earned the company many plaudits over the years, while also ensuring that the wines that they produce are as natural as possible, offering the perfect reflection of the land that Stefano Amerighi worked so diligently to research and secure before he could realise his dreams.
With all of that in mind, we have decided to take a look at one of the best wines to have emerged from the company in recent years and we fully recommend that you consider giving it a try to enjoy the true passion of a master winemaker.
Syrah is what Stefano Amerighi always aimed to produce when he started his winemaking adventures and it is his 2013 vintage that we will be drawing attention to today.
The quality of the wine is immediately apparent from the very first glance, as it offers an impenetrable ruby colouring that gives very little away about what the wine contains, while simultaneously drawing people in and making them feel as though they need to explore the wine further just to discover the mysteries that it holds.
Upon opening the bottle, you will be greeted with stunning notes that include everything from blackberries and cherries through to coffee. As you explore the scents further, you will also encounter an earthy smell that highlights the quality of the land, in addition to notes of fern, juniper and cardamom.
To the taste, the wine is beautifully structured with a warm and creamy taste that is a true delight for the senses. The tannins are well-integrated and the wine has a distinctive sharp taste that will ensure that it stays in the memory.