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All babies are sweet, but this one comes with a kick!

22 novembre 2013

After 59 days, at long last it’s time for the birth of Rugiada 2013.

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Life begins today, with the crushing of these grapes which have guarded the gift of a year and of a territory for so long.

59 days that have flown by and during which the Barbera has lost about 50% of its weight as a result of the natural withering process.

Barbera, as you know, has a relatively thin skin, so withering and all the biochemical transformations that take place inside the berry are quicker than for the famous Recioto di Amarone, which is the inspiration behind my Rugiada.

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Today marks the start of the slow transformation of part of the over 460 g/l of sugar concentrated in the berries.

After about 25/30 days’ maceration on skins, the wine will be racked into wood, where it will complete its fermentation naturally.

I’ve been making Rugiada since the 2004 harvest and I can confidently say that the vintage, the concentration of sugar and the osmotic power all influence the creation of a Passito di Barbera with an ideal level of variability.

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On average, the alcohol by volume is between 13-14.5% with residual sugar oscillating between 220 and 260 g/l.

Rugiada isn’t, however, as sweet as the analysis might lead you to believe, because it always has a sustained acidity of 7 to 8 g/l and a good consistency between body and tannin.

Year by year I keep trying to increase the length of time spent in wood because I’d like to create a wine with a style similar to that of Sherry, with notes of oxidisation which, amongst other things, are also more stable in time.

We’ll see whether my experience and intuition are right…

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Tasting the berries, which are quite wrinkly now, two things are immediately evident: the exceptional sweetness and the perfect crispness of the skin, thanks to the support of a delightful acidity.

The finish leans towards honey, fully ripe and withered figs, dried prunes and hay.

Now all we have to do is preserve all this and accompany the wine during its evolutionary infancy, through life in the cellar to that in the bottle.

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