Bianco – Tenuta La Favola (2015)
- Grape Variety(s): Grillo-Catarrato
- Style: Dry White
- Region: Noto, Sicily, Italy
- Winemaker: Corrado and Valeria Gurrieri
- Soil: High Calcareous
- Age of Vines: 10 yrs
The estate stands upon a hill in the far right-end corner of Sicily, just outside of the town of Noto, near Siracusa. When Corrado goes down the northern side of the hill to reach the olive grove, Mt. Etna salutes him. If he goes down along the southern side, all he can see is the deep blue of the seas in front of him. The paths among the vineyards are calcareous-white and at night time with a full-moon, the land shines. He’s not completely wrong when he says he lives in paradise. He has inherited this land from his mother who left it to him, second of four brothers.
It’s no surprise that he decided to farm them organically, or when he dedicated some of his land in order to experiment on his vines. Nor was it strange when he decided to use only green energy and not to have production residuals. Every day he spends hours in the vineyards looking at his vines thinking about new methods or new utensils. If you’re puzzled about the perfectionism and maniacal attention with which he looks at his sprouts, Corrado will just look at you like saying: “How can I possibly behave differently? How else could it be?”
The 2015 Bianco is a fairly typical blend for the area of Grillo and Catarrato. Like their other wines, the Bianco is raised entirely in stainless steel (no oak). This is a wine begging for some fresh seafood or a festive paella which would pair perfectly with the pleasant salinity of the wine.
Vini Viti Bibi – Domaine Benjamin Taillandier (2015)
- Grape Variety(s): Grenache/Cinsault/Carignan
- Style: Dry Red
- Region: Minervois, Languedoc, France
- Winemaker: Benjamin Taillandier
- Soil: Clay and Limestone
After finishing winemaking school, Benjamin spent some time working in a conventional winery. In 2004, however, he met natural winemaker Jean-Baptiste Senat and began working with him in his cellar. He was influenced by Senat’s ideas and techniques. After his stage ended, he knew that he wanted to make his wine with a similar philosophy one day.
In 2007 he settled in his family’s hometown of Caunes-Minnervois, which sits between the ancient city of Carcassone and The Montagne Noir. He purchased 5.7ha of Grenache Noir, Syrah, Cinsault, Terret Gris and began working it organically, eventually converting all of it over to biodynamics. Each year he added a plot to his estate and now he works 9.5 ha all by hand and now fully Ecocert certified. He also runs a terrific wine bar downtown called Cantine du Curé which is open during the summer tourist season.
Benjamin feels that many of the wines in the Minnervois AOC are too concentrated and alcoholic, and works hard to make wines that, while full flavored, are lighter, fresher and lower in alcohol than most average wines from the Languedoc. Indeed, there is a level of liveliness in this wines that you seldom see in the wines of the region, Benjamin is happily introducing people to the concept of Minervois "vin de soif".
Vini Viti Bibi is made with a blend of destemmed grapes (left whole) and allowed to macerate (soak juice with skins) in cold temperatures for 12 days which promotes freshness. The wine is then aged for about 8 months in stainless steel. One of our favorites here at Native Selections!