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Fantinel Sant'Helena Friulano 2012

Friulano from Colli Orientali del Friuli, Friuli-Venezia Giulia, Italy
    12.5% ABV
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    12.5% ABV

    Winemaker Notes

    The Tocai Sant'Helena is a beautiful straw-yellow color with a bouquet of flowers and freshly dried hay. On the palate, it is soft but dry with hints of almonds.

    Critical Acclaim

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    Fantinel

    Fantinel

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    Fantinel, Colli Orientali del Friuli, Friuli-Venezia Giulia, Italy
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    This family estate was founded in 1969 by well known and admired hotelier and restaurateur Mario Fantinel. Driven to produce wines that would defy the expectations of his tasteful clientele, Mario purchased the initial vineyards in the Dolegna Collio area. In 1973 Mario's sons Luciano, Gianfranco and Loris embarked upon the next chapter of the Fantinel story by acquiring some of the finest vineyards in Collio, Grave, and Colli Orientali as well as opening a wine bar in San Daniele del Friuli. At the threshold of the third millennium, the third generation of the family: Lara, Manuela, Stefano, Marco, Marielena, and Paolo- embarked on further expansion. Over the years, the production of and the demand for Fantinel wines has grown steadily. Today they are enjoyed around the world while the Fantinel family continues in their ceaseless efforts to advance the cuisine and culture of Friuli.

    Colli Orientali del Friuli

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    Viticulture has thrived in Colli Orientali del Friuli since the reign of ancient Rome and today its verdant, rolling hills support a long list of autochthonous varieties, each playing a unique and important role in the modern Colli Orientali wine scene.

    The region is primarily recognized for its white wines. Its indigenous varieties of Ribolla Gialla, Verduzzo, Picolit and perhaps most importantly, Friulano are made into single varietal wines or blended, and often blended with the international varieties of Sauvignon blanc, Pinot grigio and Pinot bianco. The latter have been flourishing in the area since the 1800s. But it wasn’t until the 1970s when producers started using cold fermentation techniques to produce fresh, fruity, crisp and aromatic whites that this area began to attract international attention.

    While reds only make up about a third of the area under vine, Colli Orientali is home to some of Italy’s most exciting and rare red wines. Refosco, Schioppettino, Tazzelenghe and Pignolo are among the autochthonous varieties while Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Pinot Noir also have a stronghold.

    Colli Orientali holds much in common with its neighbor, Collio; the only thing dividing them is a political line. Both are influenced by the cooling effects of the Julian Alps and moderated by the Adriatic Sea. A unique soil of alternating marine layers called flysch also dominates Colli Orientali, providing a mineral-rich environment for vine roots and optimal water drainage.

    Friulano

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    High-pitched, delicately perfumed and vibrant, Friulano thrives in the northeastern Italian region of Friuli-Venezia Giulia near the border of Slovenia. The Friulano grown today, while named for its present home of Friuli, is actually the Sauvignonasse grape, a minor cultivar from Bordeaux.

    Extensive in the area by the early 1930s, Friulano can be found in all major Friulian DOC zones: Colli Orientali, Collio, Grave del Friuli, and Isonzo. It is usually, but not always, bottled as a single-varietal wine, which are light in color and body. White peach, honeydew melon and citrus peel flavors prevail and its texture ranges from light and smooth to fresh and fine-grained. Contemplative aromas of jasmine, mint, ginger, almond and spicy herb can come into play. Friulano wines are usually best when drunk young and make great starter picks or pairings for light courses. Try it with prosciutto and other delicate cold cuts as well as any dish including the earthy spice of horseradish.

    SWS357248_2012 Item# 135846