Above: Alessandro Fenino in the San Paolo vineyard in Follonica.
The 2015 Slow Wine Guide to the Wines of Italy was officially presented weekend before last at the Slow Food Salone del Gusto food fair in Turin.
Here’s what the editors had to say about Pievalta, which also was awarded the “Snail” and “Slow Wine” prizes this year.
Taking care of the essence of the grape variety — structure, acidity, minerality — in a natural way, without letting passing, trendy illusions cloud its vision: this is the meaning of Pievalta’s work.
STORY – In 2002, Franciacorta winery Barone Pizzini decided to invest in Verdicchio and looked to Alessandro Fenino to make the wines. A young and able enologist, Fenino has employed humility and passion in his interpretation of the grape variety. And he’s delivered that reflect his own approach to grape growing and winemaking. Initial difficulties have been resolved and the winery’s growth continues. Today, Pievalta is a esteemed winery within the appellation.
VINES – Organic and biodynamic farming, free of extremism, are the basis of the winery’s work in the vineyards. Located in Maiolati, where the fresh soils are rich with calcareous marl, the winery grows grapes in 20 hectares of vineyards, of which 14 hectares are planted to vines 40 years and older. In San Paolo, in the appellation’s Follonica ward, the winery’s 5 hectares lie at 350 meters above sea level on tuffaceous soils. There, the vineyards, with uneven rows, enjoy excellent exposure.
WINES – Native yeasts, stainless-steel vinification, and lees-aging are the means used by the winery to express the rich flavors of the grapes.