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Fontaleoni Vernaccia Di San Gimignano 2011

Vernaccia from Tuscany, Italy
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    Winemaker Notes

    Pale Yellow-Green color. Medium Intensity, youthful, floral, lemon, melon, almond on he nose. Light-medium bodied, dry, medium-high acidity, moderate intensity, medium finish, citrus fruits, lemon, mineral

    Critical Acclaim

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    Fontaleoni

    Fontaleoni

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    Fontaleoni, Tuscany, Italy
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    Aziena Agricola Fontaleoni is a small estate whose vineyards are located at 200 meters above sea level, the ideal altitude for growing the Vernaccia varietal. It was established in 1959 when the Trioani family, vignerons for generations, moved to Tuscany. Restructured in the nineties, the cellar was renovated and new vineyards were planted in order to produce high-quality wines. Low yields of grapes, careful harvest and pressing of this fragile grape and conscientious winemaking, have produced Vernaccia wines that continues to grow in quality and fame every year since the first bottling, in 1994. Clearly, this is a estate to keep watching!

    One of the most iconic regions of Italy for wine, scenery, and history, Tuscany is the world’s most important outpost for the Sangiovese grape. Ranging in style from fruity and simple to complex and age-worthy, as well as in price from budget-friendly to ultra-premium, Sangiovese makes up a significant percentage of plantings here, with the white Trebbiano Toscano trailing far behind. Within Tuscany, many esteemed wines are produced in their respective sub-zones, including Chianti, Brunello di Montalcino, Bolgheri, and Vino Nobile di Montepulciano. The climate is Mediterranean and the topography consists mostly of picturesque rolling hills, with the hillside locations hosting the best vines, as Sangiovese ripens most efficiently with maximum exposure to sunlight.

    Sangiovese at its simplest, often carrying a regional designation of Chianti or just Italy, produces straightforward pizza-friendly wines with bright red fruit and not much more, but at its best it shows remarkable complexity. In top-quality Sangiovese-based wines, expressive notes of sour cherry, balsamic vinegar, dried herbs, leather, fresh earth, dried flowers, anise, tobacco smoke, and cured meat fill the glass. Brunello in particular is sensitive to vintage variation, performing best in years that are not too hot and not too cold. Chianti is associated with tangy and food-friendly dry wines at various price points. A more recent phenomenon as of the 1970s is the “Super Tuscan”—a wine made from international grape varieties like Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, or Syrah, often grown in Tuscany’s Bolgheri region, with or without Sangiovese.

    Vernaccia

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    Vernaccia's intricate history has roots in San Gimignano, whose main village’s quaint restaurants and steep pedestrian-only cobblestone streets make it as romantic—if not more—as any other Tuscan village. The idyllic countryside upon which this vine grows was actually named Italy’s first DOC in 1966. The 13th century marks its first written record and the grape was celebrated widely in literature, for example in poems by Dante and Franseco Redi.

    Sapid with a mineral persistence, Vernaccia also offers up generous amounts of white peach and melon. It has lovely floral qualities, plenty of verve on the palate and often a fresh note of green almond. Vernaccia goes with so many dishes including cooked or raw fish, puff pastry appetizers and hard-to-pair vegetables like asparagus and artichoke.

    MSKIFO076_2011 Item# 73667