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Villa Matilde Greco di Tufo 2012

Greco from Campania, Italy
  • JS91
13% ABV
  • RP90
  • RP90
  • RP90
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13% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Straw yellow, intense, persistent, appealing nose of white peach, apricots & sweet almonds on a mineral background melding into elegant, mellow complexity; rich, structured palate, fresh & characterful yet never aggressive, with abundant sense of terroir.

Critical Acclaim

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JS 91
James Suckling
I love the density and richness of this Greco with a lemon rind, stone and peach character. It's full, fresh and delicious now. I haven't had this for a while. Wonderful.
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Villa Matilde

Villa Matilde

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Villa Matilde, Campania, Italy
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Over 3000 years ago, on the lavic, mineral-rich slopes near Mount Massico and the volcano of Roccamonfina, Greek settlers reinvented viticulture, adjusting cultivation methods to the climate and soil of their adoptive home. Where vine shoots had originally laid directly on the ground, it was in northwestern Campania they were first supported by wooden poles (falanga) above the soil. The resulting wine was to become the "immortal Falerno" sung by the great poets of ancient Rome. (The name, incidentally, comes from "falanga" rather than a particular variety: the varieties themselves being three, both white and red.) In the 1950s and early 1960s, a successful lawyer named Francesco Paolo Avallone set out on a unique mission: bringing this favorite of emperors back to life. In synergy with the University of Naples, his research team found the best surviving vines and patiently grafted cuttings onto new rootstock. Decades of inspired and dedicated work ultimately bore splendid fruit: 20 original clones of Aglianico, Piedirosso (both red) and Falanghina (white), trademarked as Villa Matilde. Since the estate's first official vintage in 1976, these exclusive Villa Matilde clones have incarnated a red Falerno del Massico and its white brethren, direct descendants of those wines celebrated by Virgil and Horace. All wines are nurtured by the unique microclimate and soil of Villa Matilde: volcanic, mineral-rich hills facing the Mediterranean sun and the sea (just minutes from the gorgeous Gulf of Gaeta), sheltered on three sides by the Massico mountain range. The range - covering no less than 95% of the appellation's entire production of Falerno del Massico! - is styled by Riccardo Cotarella with the founder's son and daughter, Salvatore "Tani" and Maria Ida Avallone. The property's 173 acres under vine are divided into two farmsteads: Tenuta di San Castrese and Tenuta di Parco Nuovo, closer to the coast. Terrain on the former is a composition of lapilli, lava stone, piroclastic material, ash, and a particular, friable rock (locally called Tassone). Parco Nuovo, on the other hand, as coastal soil is mainly sandy, rich in iron silicates, potassium and phosphorus - best suited to the white Falanghina and other native grapes destined for future production. The principal estate, moreover, is flanked by properties in the Benevento and Avellino districts - respectively Rocca dei Leoni and Tenute di Altavilla.

Campania

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A winemaking renaissance is underfoot in Campania as more and more small, artisan and family-run wineries redefine their style with vineyard improvements and cellar upgrades. The region boasts a cool Mediterranean climate with extreme coastal, as well as high elevation mountain terroirs. It is cooler than one might expect in Campania; the region usually sees some of the last harvest dates in Italy.

Just south of Mount Vesuvio, the volcanic and sandy soils create aromatic and fresh reds based on Piedirosso and whites, made from Coda di Volpe and Falanghina. Both reds and whites go by the name, Lacryma Christi, meaning the "tears of Christ." South of Mount Vesuvio, along the Amalfi Coast, the white varieties of Falanghina and Biancolella make fresh, flirty, mineral-driven whites, and the red Piedirosso and Sciasinoso vines, which cling to steeply terraced coastlines, make snappy and ripe red wines.

Farther inland, as hills become mountains, the limestone soil of Irpinia supports the whites Fiano di Avellino, Falanghina and Greco di Tufo as well as the most-respected red of the south, Aglianico. Here the best and most age-worthy examples come from Taurasi.

Farther north and inland near the city of Benevento, the Taburno region also produces Aglianico of note—called Aglianico del Taburno—on alluvial soils. While not boasting the same heft as Taurasi, these are also reliable components of any cellar.

This late-ripening variety from Campania flaunts an invigorating mineral character—more so than its other regional white grape compatriots, Fiano and Falanghina. Bursting with fresh citrus, stone fruit, herb and spice, Greco di Tufo wines are dark lemon or gold in color but as that might suggest, aren’t particularly heavy on the palate. The wines are medium- to full-bodied and have a relatively high acidity. The name Tufo comes from the soft, volcanic rock found all over in the subsoil of the region where Greco thrives.

WWH131633_2012 Item# 128691