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The Wines of Umbria

Wines of UmbriaThough their contiguous positioning renders it difficult to discriminate between Umbria and Toscana, a condition that the latter’s fame exacerbates, Umbria is very much its own region—one that has been coming into its own zone and attracting the notice of both critic and consumer. Umbria traditionally privileged other product categories, though it has struggled to realize prime positioning in its favored specializations—truffles and olive oil. Its terroir, however, has always served it well: the collaboration between sea and mountain breezes realizes a classic context for ripening, while the volcanic soils put the vines under “motivational” stress. These conditions have been behind some of the zone’s most successful wines.
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Castello della Sala Muffato Della Sala 2013 500ml
Castello della Sala Muffato Della Sala 2013 500ml
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Price: $49.99
Special Price: $34.99

A rich golden hue in the glass, the ’13 Muffato Della Sala reflects its cool, classic growing year in its vivid acidity, precision, and breathtaking balance. Layers and layers of zesty citrus, luscious tropical, and crisp orchard fruits mingle with notes of honey, white wildflowers, and kisses of toasted nuts, pressed herbs, and saline minerals in this creamy wine’s dreamy, complex palate. Fresh and exciting, this Muffato Della Sala vintage feels clean and silky, unspooling across the palate with elegant minerality and kinetic energy as it builds to a succulent, sweet-tart finish. Derived primarily from grapes that have realized a considerable degree of concentration and been affected by noble rot, Muffato della Sala is mostly Sauvignon Blanc blended with Grechetto, Gewurztraminer, and Sèmillon. Grapes ferment for 18 days in temperature-controlled steel, and the wine ages for six months in oak before blending and bottling. Enjoyable now, the ’13 Muffato della Sala has considerable aging potential. more info
Antinori Cervaro della Sala Chardonnay 2017 750ml
Antinori Cervaro della Sala Chardonnay 2017 750ml
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Price: $59.99

2017 saw a warm, dry growing year in Umbria, and the resulting ’17 Cervaro Chardonnay offers a beautiful union of creaminess, saline minerality, ripe fruits and elegant acidity. Layers of orchard fruits, stone fruits and tropical fruits meld with wildflowers, fresh herbs, crushed river rocks, citrus zest, and touches of butter, honey, and vanilla in this enveloping yet energetic wine. Though rich and textured, this Chardonnay feels vivacious, revealing its underlying structure in its piquant acidity and intense mineral finish. While you can enjoy the aromatic and seductive ’17 Cervaro della Sala Chardonnay upon release, it’ll age wonderfully for years to come. A blend of 85% Chardonnay and 15% Grechetto, grapes vinify separately; the Chardonnay remains on the less for five months in oak barrels while the Grechetto ages in steel, after which the wine is blended and bottled, resting for ten months in the cellar before release. Sporting soils of clay, volcanic sediment and Pliocene fossils, the rolling land at Castello della Sala imparts a mineral inflection to its long-aging, world-class white. more info
(Antinori) Castello della Sala Pinot Nero 2016 750ml
(Antinori) Castello della Sala Pinot Nero 2016 750ml
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Price: $59.99

The Italian term for Burgundy's famed Pinot Noir, Pinot Nero is Italy's version of the beloved red-skinned grape, and this ’16 Pinot Nero is unique, elegant and deeply Italian. Coming from Umbria, this wine sings with the region’s terroir, layering its pure red and blue fruits with savory herbs, sweet baking spices, and touches of toast, oak, violet petals, and cream in a round yet nimble palate. Fine-grained tannins meld with jaunty acidity as this wine glides to a lingering, mineral-inflected finish. The grapes for this wine spend ten days macerating on the skins in stainless steel; then, they're fermented in temperature-controlled barrels, followed by malolactic fermentation and aging for around eight months in barrique and another fifteen in bottle before release. more info
(Antinori) Cervaro della Sala Cervaro della Sala 2009 750ml
(Antinori) Castello della Sala Cervaro della Sala 2009 750ml
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Price: $66.99

Antinori's Umbrian beauty Castello della Sala Cervaro is not merely one of Italy's great white wines; it came about by accident. Piero Antinori wanted to create an Italian version of white Burgundy, but he and his team couldn't quite capture his vision. Ready to give up on the project, they shut the door to the cellar where the wine was fermenting, allowing the temperature to rise slightly, to induce malolactic fermentation, and to introduce this wine's creamy mouth-feel. Intended for aging--the estate has bottles dating to '85--Cevaro is a blend of mostly Chardonnay kissed with fifteen-percent Grechetto. Cool until summer, just wet enough, and 2009 was perfect for the creation of a wine with the optimal balance of juicy tropical fruits, piquant acidity, nice minerality and just the perfect touch of oak. This '09 is drinking to the end of the decade, likely longer. more info