Podere Il Macchione

Italy / tuscany

Producer Info

press recognition: http://www.podereilmacchione.it/pdf/slow-wine.pdf

A tiny 6ha pearl of a Montepulciano property, Podere Il Macchione was first documented in 1750, then became the property of a Roman engineer in the 1940/50s before the young Abram brothers, Simone & Leonardo, of Trento took it over in 2007. Prior to buying the estate, they’d visited many others with their father Paolo, a former physics professor, but it was only Il Macchione that possessed the right ‘vibe’ (energy levels).

At 380m asl in the ‘Caggiole’ zone of Gracciano, their hill overlooks the hospital, on ancient marine clay & sand soils, rich with shellfish fossil deposits. The Sangiovese (Prugnolo Gentile) fruit, now biodynamically farmed, is vinified in a combination of cement, tonneaux & botti grandi. Maceration is between 35 – 45 days depending on the vintage. Production is centred round the Vino Nobile di Montepulciano, along with even smaller quantities of Rosso, Riserva & a ‘Brunate’ lookalike called ‘SiLeo’, aged for 4 yrs in oak prior to release.

Wines

Vino Nobile di Montepulciano

Vino Nobile di Montepulciano Riserva

 ‘SiLeo’ Vino Nobile di Montepulciano

Tasting Notes

2018 Rosso di Montepulciano – 14%, tasted 23 Jan’20, having been bottled 29th Nov’19 – all 4k bottles of it. Key to understanding the quality of this delicious wine is that comes from their own Prugnolo Gentile vines – i.e. using declassified Vino Nobile fruit. Indeed from two vineyards – one facing the paese (of Montepulciano), the other overlooking the ospedale – with an average of 15 yo vines between them. As with the rest of the property, no chemicals or herbicides are used on the vineyard, & the vinification is spontaneous, using a ‘pied de cuve’ to kick the cement tank, wild fermentation off, with 15/20 days on the skins, followed by 10 mths in French oak botte grandi of 30HL (Grenier?) – so effectively a baby Vino Nobile! A lovely deep Ribena-esque colour, the nose is classic 2018, puro, blueberry plump & generoso. Compared to the warmer 2017, aged predominantly in used barriques, the 2018 Rosso is fresher, fruitier, with lots of flesh & supple tannins.

2016 Vino Nobile di Montepulciano – tasted from botte in May 2017, prior to 22nd May 2019 bottling, vinified for 20/25 days on the skins in cement, a deep purple, distinct blueberry prugne, profondo, black pepper, a compact mass, pieno/full, fresco, immense blackberry/hedgerow fruit, with black strap licorizia & peppery finish – 30mths in oak. Full of promise…..retasted (tank sample) April 2018 – still cool and compact dark hedgerow fruit, gently spiced, finely woven tannins….retasted 19Aug’19, c.12k having been bottled April’19, 14.5%, TA5.50/60, shows a kernel of tight kirsch cherry Fabbri fruit – but actually from 97% vines of 10-30yo, plus 3% 57yo vines – some quinine, suave, lampone, transparent, carina, plenty of stoffa/materia, weave, spice, sapidissimo, gorgeously ripe silky tannins, velvety & of course 2016 freshness…retasted 23Jan’20: tight, briary, black pepper, compact, complete! Cement vinification, followed by 30 mths in 15 – 42HL botte (70% botte, 30% tonneau)

2015 Vino Nobile di Montepulciano – tasted from botte June ’17, to be bottled in 2018, vinified for 40 days on the skins in cement, the fratelli liken 2015 with 2011 due to the amount of sun, hit by hail, but rain came in Settembre before the harvest. Red garnet, crunchy strawberry/fragile fruit, sucoso/juicy, speziato, kirsch red berried fruit, a sense of ferro/iron, quinine….retasted from bottle Nov’18, harvested end Sept/early October’15, the fratelli recall the sahara-like July & August in 2015, not that the conditions seem to have fazed the 35yo Prugnolo Gentile vines in their clay soils: rose, orange, agrumato & strawberry notes; richer than the 2014 by a long way, more volume, lower acidity too of course, one senses the clay spessura, plenty of pesca/peach & gioia!….retasted April 2019: beautifully complex nose, developing some interesting tertiary notes, forest floor fruit, cool leather. Still so mineral and refined. Very drinkable now!

2014 Vino Nobile di Montepulciano – tasted from (April ’17) bottle, ‘late’ harvest 5-20 Ottobre due to complicated conditions, needed to be patient, production normal, no rot, a year that required tanto lavoro in vyd, but they feel rewarded by the result. Indeed they were: vinified for 35 days in cement, loganberry, forest floor, autumnal leaves, quinine/Nebbiolo esque, fresco, sapid…..retasted from bottle Jan’18: 14%, bellissimo colore, rosehip, tea, & red cassis, the product of two days intense harvesting by 35 pickers, late in October; cleansing sweet cassis, agrumato/orange peel, coiled in its shell, needs coaxing, but then reveals itself as expansive, this ‘caraterre solare’! …Retasted May’18, such a transparent, delicious wine, so at ease with itself! And in Nov’18, such brilliance, so fine & slender (‘esile’), with cleansing purity!…retasted April 2019: so elegant and intriguing. Mineral and taught, very fine, silky, with such clarity. Captivating. Ready to drink now (but also could keep for a good few years….if you can resist!) Beautiful expression of Sangiovese.

2013 Vino Nobile di Montepulciano – bottled giugno’16, c.10k bts, cement fermented for 25 days on skins, followed by 30 months in botte grande. Brothers Simone & Leo remember 2013 on account of the warm August & September ahead of the 22nd harvest. There’s a sense of small red berries, very discreet, of forest floor fruit, focused but sempre relaxed. Still quite tight, not a big vintage like 2012, more slender & elegant….retasted April 2019: it wants to relax but still has a little way to go….wonderful depth and complexity, with notably powerful structure. Bolder and more muscular compared to the 2014. Exciting with immense potential to age but needs more time.

2014 Vino Nobile di Montepulciano Riserva – tasted Nov’18 from bottle (bottled 30th November ’18) of which only 3,333 made from their oldest, c.30yo vines. 60 days on the skin. Fantastico! Depth & tamarind fruit recall 2010, yet also so cleansing, transparent, with flecks of rose…retasted 19Aug’19, late harvested (but swiftly!) on 20th October hence 14.5%abv, autumnal hue, briary/lampone, tea, cinchona bark in a nutshell (!), piena, pulpy, autumnal leaf litter, lovely freshness, verve, good structure & sapidity; affinamento 40 mths in 500l tonneaux & 15/20HL botti. (2016 was the year in which the fratelli bought new botti, 15HL & 20HL for the Riserva)

2013 Vino Nobile di Montepulciano Riserva – tasted Jan’18 in bottle, 3k bts produced; compared to the Nobile, the Riserva – aged for 40 mths in wood – shows an extra gear of loganberry/mulberry fruit, aided no doubt by the 30 yo vines, it’s more kirsch, more grasso, rotondo even, dare I say “luxoso”! Simone points to the heat-spike that arrived in July ’13, coming up from the broad flat Val di Chiana to the south, & from which they were partially sheltered….retasted in May’18, not in a happy place right now, it needs time & space to develop in bottle. FiderTi!

2012 Vino Nobile di Montepulciano Riserva – tasted June’17, 14.5%, aged for 40 mths in tonneaux, 2.5k bts made, bottled June ’16, the fratelli recall 20 days of extreme heat in July that shaped the wine & reduced the crop: dark tamarind & licorizia fruit, PX intensity even, depth, mentholated, 2000 esque character, cupo, black pepper, almost carnoso/meaty, sotto bosco/forest floor, one can sense the thicker skins, the high skin to pulp ratio, the spiciness…

2011 Vino Nobile di Montepulciano Riserva – 14.5%, c. 2k bts, richer by contrast, the scent of warm pine needles, of sun, balsam oil, piu grasso/fatter, yet structured, substantial with 31grams of natural dry extract, packed with red, sultry fruit, alive with exciting acidity.

2013 ‘SiLeo’ Vino Nobile di Montepulciano -tasted June ’17, aged for 50 months in 2 used tonneaux, to be bottled in 2018: focus, taut, pieno/full, gioioso/joyful, a nervo, fleshy, rich kirsch, super suave, quinine…

2010 ‘SiLeo’ Vino Nobile di Montepulciano – 14.5%, c.1.3kbts, bottled Maggio ’15, aged in two tonneaux of 500 litres for 48 months, darker, more intense garnet red of the vintage, sense of tamarind, of quinine, brambly, forest floor, autumnal leaves, more structured, great grip, complete.

 

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