Giordano Lombardo Vigne di San Martino Gavi di Gavi 2018
Nestled just outside the medieval village of Gavi among verdant woods and picturesque vineyards, the 20 hectares that make up the biodynamic vineyard of Giordano Lombardo straddle the border of the Piedmont and Liguria regions. The indigenous Cortese vines that are grown here give rise to an unadulterated wine that fully embodies the climate, soil and winemaking tradition of the region. Passionately committed to the idea that nature is a resource to be nurtured rather than exploited and misused, yields are kept low and the use of pesticides, herbicides, anti-mildew agents and fertilizers is strictly forbidden.
After the grapes are hand-selected, they are brought to the temperature-controlled cellar where both vinification (both in barrels and bottles) and fining take place at a consistent temperature of 14/16 °C year-round. What results is a wine that bears the intense fragrances and characteristic flavors of the Gavi terroir.
Among Piedmont’s most historical and respected white wine producing zones, Gavi—also known as Gavi di Gavi and Cortese di Gavi—comes from Piedmont's southeast, in the province of Alessandria. Gavi is the main town of the area; Cortese is the grape. Cortese for Gavi is grown in any of 11 communes in the area where the soils are abundant in chalky, white, limestone-rich clay. The best Gavi from these locations are delicately floral, with stone fruit and citrus characters and a crisp, mineral-laden finish.
While typically made in a fresh and unoaked style, by law Gavi can come in many forms: frizzante, spumante, metodo classico and méthode ancestrale. But most producers maintain a conventional winemaking practice of temperature-controlled fermentation in stainless steel and make fresh, still whites. However, there are several barrique-aged examples, which can be interesting. The biodynamic wines of Gavi, fermented with ambient yeasts can be the most expressive.
First recorded in the early 17th century in the province of Alessandria in SE Piedmont, Cortese today is most highly regarded from Gavi where soils are limestone-rich. It also grows well in the surrounding zones, namely Monferrato and Colli Tortonesi. Somm Secret—Because of its freshness and chalky minerality, this white wine commonly populates the fish restaurants’ wine lists of the Ligurian coast so practically owes more allegiance to this neighboring region than its home.