Amphora and wine: the binomial discussed by three experts in the wine guide “Tre Bicchieri”
2015/06/23 amphora and wine / amphorae Artenova / aromas / biodynamics regimes / gambero Rosso / impruneta / Italy / natural product / taste of the wine / Tre Bicchieri / vineyard / weekly magazine / wine making
Amphora and wine: a fashion that leverages the charm of olden times, or a way to re discover old solutions for modern problems? This was the subject of discussion in the weekly magazine of Gambero Rosso – “Tre Bicchieri” in a recent report about amphora wines (and Artenova) analyzing the widespread practice and prospects. The path back to basics is followed in three different ways, by three experts from the world of wine: Josko Gravner who since 2001 has abandoned traditional wine-making and produces wine entirely in jars of Georgian origin; Francesco Bartoletti, winemaker and our technical consultant; Valentino Ciarla, winemaker, who in Tuscany follows two companies that have just begun the experience of wine-making in amphora.
“Making wine is like giving birth. Man must accompany nature and allow it to take its course. My idea, in fact, is to reduce as much as possible to the bare essentials: no additives, no yeast, no filtration. The next objective is to eliminate stemming. Even the stalks must be part of the wine and in this return to nature the amphora does the rest: as an amplifier does with music, the amphora gives back to us a natural product that was conceived in the vineyard. Obviously I do not aspire to quantity: I make wine for myself. Numbers are not my job”
“… So we decided to try something new. And I must say that the returns were immediate, both the appreciation from the market and from the properties of Impruneta clay. The latter, with respect to other types of clay has the characteristic of having very low porosity, so it does not disperse the wine. In addition, according to the various analyses we did, we found that it releases absolutely no metallic substances whatsoever (which is generally one of the limits of this material) This means that the amphorae in terracotta from Impruneta do not necessarily require a coating of beeswax. From a commercial point of view, it is has been an immediate success, especially among the producers who work under organic or biodynamic regimes. Then the extra advantage is that it is an Italian production. The availability and direct contact with an artisan such as Artenova has encouraged the use in Italy. Before you had to buy the amphorae abroad”
“In general there are two ways to use an amphora: for aging only or for extreme winemaking. We are trying the first in order to understand what results can be obtained. Making a comparison with other systems can tell you that terracotta has several advantages: compared with steel it is a material that breathes; and compared with wood it has the advantage of not releasing aromas that can alter the taste of the wine …”