Cervaro della Sala

Vintage

Classification

Umbria IGT

Blend

80% Chardonnay, 20% Grechetto

Climate

After a rainy and fairly cold autumn and winter and winter, spring and summer 2003 will certainly be remembered as among the hottest and driest in recent years. Thanks to the dry, mild weather in spring, budding was promising and slightly earlier than average for all varieties and the conditions were subsequently escellent for flowering and fruit setting. From June onwards throughout the summer, the weather conditions were unusual with very high temperatures and absolutely no rain. As a consequence, the grapes ripened early and immediately after 15th August the earliest ripening varieties showed very high sugar levels, due to a sort of natural auto-concentration. Production quantities were slightly lower due to the lack of water, especially where emergency watering was not possible. This trend continued steadly during the harvesting period, allowing us to wait for the best moment to pick the fruit, thus avoiding risks of damage to the grapes. The difference between night and day temperatures allowed the grapes to complete their maturation and to obtain a production with optimun colours and structure.

Vinification

The grapes come from 15-20 year old vines planted at Antinori's #Castello della Sala#, at elevations ranging between 200 and 400 metres (656 and 1,312 feet), in Pliocene sedimentary soils rich in marine fossils with some clay. The grapes were harvested and immediately placed in special refrigerated conveyer equipment to ensure that the grapes would be cool on arrival at the press. The grape varieties were vinified separately. In order to maximise the wine's aromas, the musts remained in contact with the skins for about 8 hours at 10°C. Afterwards the musts were transferred to new French oak 225 liter barrels (Alliers and Troncais) where alcoholic fermentation took place over a period of 15 days. The wine remained on the lees (sur lie) in the barriques for about 5 months, during which time it completed its malolactic fermentation. It was then racked, blended, bottled, and remained a further 10 months in the bottle in the historic cellars of Castello della Sala before being released.
Alcohol : 13,5% Vol.

Historical data

In 1987, Antinori introduced its first Chardonnay-based wine, the 1985 vintage Cervaro della Sala, a name that translates as Stag of the Hall, and was taken from that of the 14th century feudal owners of #Castello della Sala#, an Umbrian castle Antinori purchased in 1940. The wine has won numerous awards, including the coveted three goblets from Gambero Rosso (one of Italy's leading wine magazines).

Tasting notes

A complex bouquet with fruity aromas of citrus, pineapple and pears blending with vanilla from the oak used for ageing. Excellent and unspoilt varietal character. Well-structured palate with lingering flavours.

Awards

Score 90/100

WINE ADVOCATE June 2007

2007 U.S.A.

Score 92/100

WINE ENTHUSIAST October 2006

2006 U.S.A.

Score 90/100

WINE SPECTATOR Dec. 2005

2005 U.S.A.