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Villa Sparina Gavi di Gavi 2017

Cortese from Gavi, Piedmont, Italy
  • JS91
0% ABV
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  • JS92
  • W&S90
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Winemaker Notes

The Gavi DOCG is the wine that has always coincided with the historic identity of Villa Sparina. A great classic obtained from the Cortese grapes, a white wine which expresses truth and territory with its unique strength and freshness. Lively, fresh and fruity, this Gavi donates harmonic flavours and a contemporary spontaneity.

Critical Acclaim

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JS 91
James Suckling

An opulent Gavi, but one that holds the intensity very well on the nose with notes of honeysuckle, dried jasmine, nutmeg and peach pit. Full body, lots of fleshy stone fruit and a textured finish.

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Villa Sparina

Villa Sparina

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Villa Sparina, Gavi, Piedmont, Italy
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Located in Monterotondo, the heart of Gavi DOC, Villa Sparina was founded by Mario Moccagatta. The winery is currently run by Mario, along with his two sons Stefano and Massimo. Head enologist Beppe Caviola, one of the foremost winemakers in Piemonte, has brought Gavi to new heights exploring the full potential of the Cortese grape. All of the Villa Sparina wine are produced from estate grown fruit and are estate bottled. The vineyards are overseen by agronomist Federico Curtaz, formerly of Gaja. They are increasingly oriented towards reducing yields, in an effort to achieve the highest possible quality. Harvest is delayed until the last possible moment, giving the wines great concentration and a wonderful balance of acidity and fruit.

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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 citurs 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.

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Cortese’s territory was once part of the city-state of Genoa, and still the grape practically owes more allegiance to Liguria than the region that grows it: Piedmont.

Cortese was first recorded in the early 17th century at the far southeastern corner of Piedmont, in the province of Alessandria and today has no known relatives. It is most highly regarded here, in Gavi, and thus is often referred to simply as "Gavi." Cortese also grows well in the surrounding parts of Piedmont: Cortese dell’Alto Monferrato a few miles west of Gavi and just over a few hills to the east, in the Colli Tortonesi. But there Cortese doesn’t always achieve the ripeness, or get the winemaking proficiency that it does when grown on the limestone-rich soils of Gavi. While some renowned Barolo producers produce stellar Gavi, such as Michele Chiarlo and Pio Cesare, the region has no shortage of its own dedicated producers.

Because of its freshness and chalky minerality, this white wine commonly populates the fish restaurants’ wine lists of the Ligurian coast.

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