GRAPES: 60% Cabernet Sauvignon and 40% Merlot.
VINTAGE: A very hot year that will probably be remembered as one of the driest after 2003. Although the autumn started with rains and temperatures above the seasonal average, December and January were very cold with freezing temperatures during the day, accentuated by strong northern winds and no rain. The cold temperatures contributed to the natural elimination of pests and fungal diseases of the vine. The low rainfall of the winter season was not enough to supply the water resources of the subsoil. From March the temperatures started to rise and spring begun during the first week of April with beautiful sunny days. Except for some sporadic rains, spring was characterized by a particularly dry climate. In mid-May the temperatures were often above seasonal average. Summer months were characterized by sunny days and hot temperatures. Fortunately, the daytime sea breezes, alternating with nocturnal winds coming from inland, brought refreshment to the vines. This prevented them from suffering the lack of water or thermal stress. Moreover, the particular territorial microclimate of Bolgheri, due to its soil morphology, altitude and exposure of the vines and the proximity of the sea, along with the surrounding Mediterranean vegetation, has contributed to mitigate the heat, more than in other territories. The veraison began in mid-July and the climatic trend anticipated the maturation of the grapes. In mid-August, however, an Atlantic Ocean turbulence brought rain and fresher air. As a consequence, and despite an early harvesting (that began at the end of August with Merlot), the picking was carried out slower than usual for Cabernet Sauvignon and it lasted until the end of September. Thanks to the cooler temperatures, the grapes could nicely develop the aromatic component in their phenolic maturation. The climatic trend has affected the production yields, on average 20% less than a normal vintage, but this did not compromise the high quality of the product. Healthy, crunchy and well-ripened grapes produced musts that are not excessively rich in structure, considering what was expected from this vintage. They are rather characterized by a good acidity which supports the higher degree of alcohol of this vintage. The soft and silky tannins were already present in the musts and are the underlying characteristic of Guidalberto 2017. A wine that will need a longer time of ageing in glass but that will surely develop an incredible bouquet and palate.
HARVEST: The manual harvest began with Merlot at the end of August and continued in September with the Cabernet Sauvignon.
WINEMAKING NOTES: Careful manual selection of grapes on a sorting table. Soft pressing and destemming of the bunches to prevent the cracking of the berries and excessive release of tannins. Alcoholic fermentation in stainless steel vats at a controlled temperature maintained around 26-28 ° C, without addition of external yeasts. The macerations of this vintage lasted about 12-15 days for Merlot and 10-13 days for the Cabernet Sauvignon. This was made in order to limit the excessive release of tannins in a vintage richer in anthocyanins. Frequent pumpovers and délestages helped the aromatic expression of the musts. The malolactic fermentation begun in early November and was carried out in stainless steel vats. After that the musts were transferred into barriques for ageing.
AGEING: The wine was mostly aged in French oak barrels and partially American oak barrels for 15 months.