Farming and harvest

Farming

Our farming practices are marked by the utmost respect for the soil and grapevine. In fall immediately after harvest all the rows are worked with a 5-point ripper that opens the soil deeply, allowing oxygen and winter rains to penetrate well into the ground. This way the ground during the winter is able to rake in the air to regenerate the water supply which will be necessary for the vines during the next autumn season.
After autumn ripping we sow green manure (mixture of legumes, grasses and crucifers) necessary for the maintenance of the structure and porosity of the soil and supply of natural organic matter. Later in the spring season we mow and bury the chopped grass. During spring and summer we also carry out light and superficial harrowing in order to get rid of the weeds, to let air in and to stop moisture evaporation from the ground. Along the rows we work the soil with a weed tearing machine.

During the vegetative phase we carefully handle the canopy in order to balance the production of grapes and leave the vegetation in the best conditions of aeration and collection of light radiation. We do not practice any stripping or shearing, it is not necessary to practice the thinning of the bunches because we already obtain a naturally balanced ripening of the grapes.

The pesticide treatments are carried out only with copper (with a quantity of copper metal per hectare per year less than 2 kg) and mine sulphur (as opposed to more impure petrochemical sulphur). During the year we distribute the biodynamic preparations as per calendar indications, evaluating the soil conditions and development of the vines.

The harvest

A few weeks before harvest we check repeatedly the ripening rates sampling the berries of each variety in the vineyard.  Furthermore the final decision on when to harvest is taken after sensory evaluation of grapes and their seeds, meaning that the human mouth is the final decision maker. The harvest is done entirely by hand in crates, the grapes are immediately brought to the cellar and destemming and crushing is carried out.

Harvest

The year 2010 began with difficult weather situations: temperatures balanced out quite often below the average of the reference periods of recent years. Winter brought temperatures near zero, and was followed by a cool and rainy spring, with temperatures that have struggled a bit to rise, causing a slowdown in the vegetative growth and delay in blossoming. The heat of late June – early July made it possible to balance the phenology of the vines, even if the ripening of the fruit continued slowly during the months of August and September, also below the averages seasonal ranges. Despite this very particular harvest from a meteorological point of view, the grapes were very interesting: in 2010 the quantity but not the quality decreased, for a thousandth rich in aromas and flavours and a great body provided by optimal levels of acidity and high alcohol volumes but without excess. The Sangiovese harvest began as of September 21st.

Harvest

From a meteorological point of view 2009 recorded excessive situations during the different seasons, but eventually they balanced out quite well and the end of the season was great. If temperatures were about average, the winter was the wettest of the past 30 years. This was followed by exceptional rainfall in spring, the effect of which was an early awakening of the growing season of plants and a subsequent accelerated development. The arrival of summer led to rather high temperatures, but by the end of August and onwards there were large variations in temperature which provided cool temperatures at night. With the alternating rain and sun in September, the grapes completed their ripening with excellent outcomes. Ripe fruit arrived in the cellar with great concentrations and aromatic complexities, such as to give the 2009 high levels of alcohol content, colour intensity and dry extracts. Harvest of the Sangiovese as of September 18th.

Harvest

The 2008 season has seen climate patterns at times conflicting, but in the end they balanced out quite well: rain and low temperatures from May to June resulted in lower flower blooming and the inability, in some cases, to carry out the necessary fungal treatments of a few vines. The dry summer, in fact, with high temperatures was perfectly balanced by the rains in mid-August, when a few thunderstorms gave life and new energy to the vines. The optimal temperature range between late August and early September managed to improve the last stage of ripeness of the grapes that were harvested this year with just a slight delay compared to last year’s harvest. The harvest of Sangiovese therefore was held starting from September 24th. Despite the difficulties encountered in late spring, the grapes were healthy and in the cellar the fermentation was quite fast thanks to good, ripe bunches. The end result of the ripening and winemaking process of this year has produced very elegant and fine wines, rich in aroma exalting the fruitiness, medium-bodied and high drinkability.

Harvest

The 2007 harvest began earlier than the 2006 one of about one week. There has been, therefore, a great difference on the date of harvest, despite the significant advance of vegetative growth, aided by above average temperatures and suggested different scenario expectations. If, in fact, there was no real winter, prompting fears of an early seasonal drought, the rains in June and August paved the way to a new birth and growth. The course of the spring-summer season provided the best quality grapes with different peaks of excellence, with perfect clusters in terms of health and balance in all components, with a high sugar content, according to some wines with good structure. The Sangiovese harvest began starting from September 17th. During winemaking, the must submitted regular fermentation kinetics that allowed to enhance the extraction of aromatic compounds from the skins, making the new wine very fruity.

Harvest

The autumn was characterized by low temperatures with considerable precipitation which was followed by cold weather and heavy snowfalls towards the end of the year. The cold lasted until early February without rain. March was characterized by heavy rainfall, however. After an April without spring temperatures, the month of May registered very high temperatures followed by an abnormal decrease at the end of the month, which lasted until mid-June. The summer began with high temperatures, with dry and slightly muggy weather, which anticipated the flowering and blossoming, but the low temperatures and significant rainfall beginning in August have slowed down the ripening process, allowing to balance out the water deficit without damaging the conditions of the grapes. Since mid-August, the days of great intensity with high temperatures and large temperature ranges have led to the vintage grape wine with great potential for high concentrations of noble components, such as anthocyanins and total polyphenols. The Sangiovese grape harvest began on September 21st.

Harvest

The winter season was marked by cold weather with heavy snowfalls also on the hilly areas, which lasted until late February-early March. The germination was regularly seen in the month of April, accompanied by characteristic early spring rainfalls. The month of June was characterized by high temperatures above the average, while beginning in late July and August there were below average recorded temperatures with rainfalls at regular intervals. All this caused a delay in the ripening of the grapes. Throughout the month of September, the good temperature range, with very hot days and cool nights, has ensured the preservation and maintenance of the aromatic components of the grapes. Also the month of October presented weather changes and consequently changed grape harvesting. The harvest of Sangiovese grapes took place starting from September 23rd.