Le Macchiole Paleo 2005
Cabernet Franc from Tuscany, Italy
Named for the vineyard of its provenance, Paleo Rosso is the flagship wine for Le Macchiole and was the first wine in Bolgheri to made entirely from Cabernet Franc. Ruby red with violet flecks, its red fruit aroma offers notes of yellow and black pepper, tobacco, and nutmeg. Clean on the palate, it finishes with elegant minerality, ripe fruit, and a hint of balsamic.
Wine & Spirits - "Cabernet franc seems so well adapted to the soils at Le Macchiole that it’s impossible to separate the land from the grape. Grown in a mix of limestone and chalk, with rocks, sand and clay, this '05 seamlessly combines savory, ferrous tannins with fresh black-and blueberry flavors. It’s cool and dark when first poured, that darkness offset by high notes of fresh mint. With air it becomes full and broad, the coolness a textural component that feels like silk pulled tightly across a sheet of iron. It’s a beautiful wine, with abundant complexity and flawless integration. "
Wine Spectator - "Decadent aromas of berries, meat and earth follow through to a full body, with velvety, rich tannins, a long, flavorful finish and a coconut and berry aftertaste. Impressive. Cabernet Franc. Best after 2011. 2,000 cases made."
The Wine Advocate - "The 2005 Paleo (Cabernet Franc) is impressive. Wild herbs, roasted coffee beans, new leather, minerals and dark fruit emerge from this long, refined wine. Although the intensity tapers off slightly on the mid-palate, this is an absolutely gorgeous wine loaded with style and personality. Still tightly wound, it needs further bottle age to reach its peak. It is arguably the most successful of the estate's 2005s. Anticipated maturity: 2009-2017.
Le Macchiole releases its wines later than most estates on the Tuscan coast, so readers will find the 2004s in the market, while the 2005s are due to arrive this Fall. Proprietor Cinzia Merli and long-time oenologist Luca D-Attoma have turned out a glorious set of 2004s. The 2005 vintage proved to be much more challenging as the damp, fresh growing season made it hard to achieve full ripeness. These are pretty wines, but they aren't quite at the level of the estate's finest efforts. "
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Le Macchiole Winery
Long before it was fashionable, Eugenio Campolmi saw the potential of his homeland, buying his first vineyard in Bolgheri in 1975 baptised "Le Macchiole". In 1987, he hired famed oenologist Vittorio Fiore as a consultant before the later was joined by Luca d'Attoma for years later. In contrast to his renowned neighbors who focused on Bordeaux blends, Campolmi focused on achieving the purest expression of individual varieties, crafting distinct wines of unprecedented quality. Soon Le Macchiole joined Sassicaia, Ornellaia, and Guado al Tasso as one of the most prestigious estates in Bolgheri. Following Eugenio's death in 2002, his wife Cinzia Merli, who shares her husband's passion, took over at the estate. Working with Luca D'Attoma, she has carried on her husband's legacy by continuing to make great Tuscan wines. View all Le Macchiole Wines
About TuscanyView a map of Tuscany wineries (TUSS-can-ee) Sangiovese. Most of the wine coming from Tuscany is made from some clone of this varietal, but a growing trend, started by the renegade winemakers of those Super Tuscans, is to incorporate more international varietals.
Notable FactsThe most well known sub-districts of Tuscany are Chianti, Brunello di Montalcino and Vino Nobile di Montepulciano (note that Montepulciano here refers to the local village, not the grape variety found in the Italian region of Abruzzi). Wine labeled from these regions is DOC-regulated and Sangiovese-based blends. Quality wine from these DOC areas has been on the rise for decades, with top-notch winemakers and wineries shedding the low-quality image once held for Tuscan wine by producing consistently outstanding bottlings that range from deliciously drinkable to highly ageable. Newer to the scene are regions like Bohlgeri and the Maremma, home to of what are now termed "Super-Tuscans," named for the wine coming from the Tuscany area, but not following all of the DOC or DOCG laws required in Italy. In the 1970's, some pioneer winemakers began buying land outside of Chianti and Montalcino, and planting not only Sangiovese, but also international varieties like Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. The wine they produced only fit into the lowest Italian category of "vina da tavola," but the winemakers sold the wine for high prices, creating an almost cult following, and spurning a new wine category called IGT.
A little ditty about Italy...This country has about as many wines as its had governments. With 20 different regions, hundreds of DOCs and even more indigenous varieties, the amount of wine made in Italy is mind-boggling. Most of the juice, however, remains in the country for thirsty Italians. Wine is food in Italy and its rare that a meal is consumed without a glass of vino. That said, it's not common to find many folks drinking wine without food either. In turn, it's a match, and a mighty good one at that. In fact, it's safe to say that Italian wine is a foodie wine – one that goes on the table for a myraid of meals.
For regions, the most popular are Tuscany (home of Chianti), Piedmont and the Tre-Venezie, which includes Veneto, Trentino Alto-Adige and Friuli. Other communes of note are in Southern Italy, and a few good wines are made elsewhere in the country. The islands of Sardinia and Sicily are members of the Italian winemaking community as well.
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Crisp
- Light to medium bodied wines that are high in acid and light to medium fruit. Typically no oak.
Fruity & Smooth
- Light to medium bodied wines with lots of juicy fruit, typically medium acid and medium oak.
Rich & Creamy
- Full bodied wines that have typically undergone malo-lactic fermentation and/or spent time in oak.
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