Villa Bucci, Verdicchio Classico Superiore 2018
The Bucci family has been growing grapes in the Marche since the 1700s. Current custodian, Ampelio Bucci has 26 hectares of vineyard on this 400 hectare estate, which is cultivated organically. Of these, 21 hectares are Verdicchio, spread over six separate vineyards. The old vines and low yields give wines of great intensity. Consultant winemaker at Villa Bucci is the legendary enologist Giorgio Grai, who has been there for nearly 30 years. He makes wines for ageing and complexity rather than freshness and simplicity.
The fruit for this wine comes from four vineyards, each with a different exposure and elevation, which contribute to greater complexity in the final blend. Yields are kept low and vineyard management is certified organic, with no herbicides or pesticides used. Soils are mainly calcareous (limestone), lending minerality to the wine, with around 30% clay which retains moisture during the hot summers. The average age of the vines is 37 years.
The 2018 vintage followed seasonal norms in Marche. Weather conditions were good throughout the growing season allowing the grapes to reach perfect ripeness with no threat of humidity.
The grapes were soft-pressed and the free-run juice was fermented at controlled temperatures. The wine was then aged in old oak barrels between 50 and 75 hectolitres in size for four months. Different vineyard parcels were vinified separately then carefully blended before bottling.
Deep straw yellow in colour, this wine has a layered bouquet with notes of Golden Delicious apples and almonds. The palate is complex with a silky texture and good body. A refreshing mineral edge contrasts with ripe, round flavours of wildflower honey.