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Bucci Verdicchio Dei Castello di Jesi 2001
The Bucci family's 300 years in viniculture are an impressive heritage, which Ampelio Bucci brilliantly administers. Ampelio himself is a man of multiple talents, whose marketing expertise and in-depth knowledge of the Italian cultural and economic scenario are so impressive.
The Buccis have owned this magnificent 990-acre property since the early 1800s. In the course of the past two decades, Ampelio and star oenologist Giorgio Grai have reversed Italian tradition, producing whites characterized by superb structure and cellar life, and an easily approached, supple and readily enjoyable red.
The legendary Giorgio has implemented especially severe quality parameters, far above the current standards for the appellation: higher density of vines per acre, minuscule crop yields and a concentration and cellar life unmatched by any other Verdicchio!
Named “Oenotria” by the ancient Greeks for its abundance of grapevines, Italy has always had a culture that is virtually inextricable from wine. Wine grapes are grown just about everywhere throughout the country—a long and narrow boot-shaped peninsula extending into the Mediterranean and Adriatic Seas. The defining geographical feature of the country is the Apennine Mountain range, extending from Liguria in the north to Calabria in the south. The island of Sicily nearly grazes the toe of Italy’s boot, while Sardinia lies to the country’s west. Climate varies significantly throughout the country, with temperature being somewhat more dependent on elevation than latitude, though it is safe to generalize that the south is warmer. Much of the highest quality viticulture takes place on gently rolling, picturesque hillsides.
Italy boasts more indigenous varieties than any other country—between 500 and 800, depending on whom you ask—and most wine production relies upon these native grapes. In some regions, international varieties have worked their way in, but their use is declining in popularity, especially as younger growers begun to take interest in rediscovering forgotten local specialties. Sangiovese is the most widely planted variety in the country, reaching its greatest potential in parts of Tuscany. Nebbiolo is the prized grape of Piedmont in the northwest, producing singular, complex and age-worthy wines. Other important varieties include Montepulciano, Trebbiano, Barbera, Nero d’Avola and of course, Pinot Grigio.
One of central Italy’s classic white grapes, Verdicchio thrives in the Marche region; its best versions come from two distinct appellations. Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi, to the west of Ancona, is only 20 miles from the Adriatic Sea and the smaller, Verdicchio di Matelica, is inland and at a higher elevation. Castelli di Jesi is Marche’s largest DOC but its best wines come from its hillside vineyards. The best Verdicchio boast fresh citrus fruit with a mineral lift, a sturdy finish and can age for a decade. Recent genetic discoveries have proven that the Verdicchio grape is identical to Trebbiano di Soave, Trebbiano di Lugana and Trebbiano Veltenesi.