Capezzana, 'Ghiaie della Furba' 2016
The Capezzana estate, 24 kilometres north west of Florence, is owned by the Contini Bonacossi family. The younger generation is now firmly in charge of the estate's 80 hectares of vineyard, with daughter Benedetta Contini Bonacossi as winemaker and Francesco Bernabei as consultant winemaker. The wines and the olive oil have an elegance which marks this estate out from the crowd.
Grapes for this wine are grown on the alluvial valley of the Furba River. The south/south-west facing vineyards are situated at approximately 150-200 metres above sea level. The ideal climatic conditions allow Capezzana to practise an eco-friendly form of farming, without using pesticides. Other sustainable farming practices at Capezzana include the use exclusively of organic fertilisers, a techinque known as "sovescio" (ploughing under legume and cereal crops grown between the vines' rows), and no use whatsoever of herbicides.
The 2016 vintage was characterised by a very mild winter with regular spells of rain until early June allowing for important underground water reserves to build up. Conditions through the growing season were good, with a large crop of healthy grapes flourishing during the dry, sunny and warm summer days that were balanced by cool evenings. Although heavy rainfall (80ml over three days) arrived on the 15th September, overall this vintage is characterised by the large diurnal temperature variation during summer which has given the 2016 vintage an aromatic note more defined than in previous years.
Fermentation lasted seven days and took place in temperature- controlled stainless steel tanks. Temperatures did not exceed 28oC during fermentation. After 13 days of maceration, the wine was transferred into barriques, where malolactic fermentation was completed within one month. The wine was aged for 24 months in French oak barriques of which 50% were new. It remained in bottle for at least a year before release.
This wine is intense ruby red in colour. On the nose, there are complex notes of black cherries, sage, chocolate, cassis and new leather. This is a full-bodied wine with well-balanced acidity that will reward a few years ageing while its formidable tannins melt away and the oak integrates further.