Thinning: the secret of excellence lies in selecting only the best, in order to obtain Valmaggiore, Francesca, and Castellinaldo

The magic word is thinning. Select only the best, leaving just 8 bunches for each vine. It happens, in these summer days, to the 4 hectares of vineyards destined to produce three absolute excellences of the Marchisio Family: the Barbera d’Alba Superiore “Castellinaldo”, the Nebbiolo d’Alba “Valmaggiore”, and the Roero Riserva “Francesca”. «This rigorous selection, based on thinning – explains Fabio Marchisio, who manages the vineyards together with his brother, Ivo – is essential to obtain the highest possible quality». The result: just 50-60 quintals of grapes per hectare will be harvested. «Similar thinning operations of the bunches – Fabio adds – are also underway in all our other vineyards, where the yield per hectare is that normally required by the specifications for Arneis, Barbera, Pinot Noir and Nebbiolo».

Naturally, the strictest selection invests the grapes destined for the highest excellence of the estate, which is organic and biodynamic. The Barbera d’Alba “Castellinaldo”, fermented in steel, also ages for 18 months in small acacia barrels, before facing another 6 months in the bottle. Macerated in amphora on its natural yeasts, a super-Nebbiolo such as the “Valmaggiore” remains for a year in ceramic containers, before resting for another six months in the bottle. Finally, the aging of the Roero Riserva “Francesca” is classic, in barriques and oak barrels for at least 24 months, plus a year in the bottle. Real jewels, which then release in the glass the essence of the soil from which they come. And the first step, in this path of quality, is exactly what is being done in these days: the thinning out of the bunches. Only the chosen fruits will have the task of completing the alchemical process, giving life to small masterpieces all to be tasted.

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