At Carlo Merolli’s tasting at La Vela I tasted for the first time the wines of fairly new Tuscan enterprise Campi Nuovi.
Campi Nuovi is located in the Montecucco DOC zone in the area between Monte Amiata and the Maremma, some 20 kilometres south of Montalcino, and some 40 kilometres from the Tyrrhenian Sea. The famous producer in this area is the Empsons’ Monte Antico property, which has been producing well-recognized, well-priced wines there for quite some years now.
The area has not always been known for its wines, but the climate and soil conditions would seem to be very good for making wine. The 7 hectares of Campi Nuovi vineyards are located in the Monte Amiata foothills, at heights between 350 and 465 metres, and enjoy a well-ventilated climate with exposure towards the south and south-east.
Owners Daniele Rosellini and Nadia Riguccini acquired the land and started planting vines there in 2000. Viticulture is certified organic and follows biodynamic guidelines. Daniele, who presented the wines at the tasting, has worked with the mythical Giulio Gambelli at Case Basse and Fattoria Petrolo, so he certainly has his background in order.
The vineyards are planted at densities between 5,000 and 6,000 vines per hectare and consist of some 85% sangiovese, with the remainder being other red grapes (colorino, pugnitello, merlot, cabernet sauvignon) and white grapes (ansonica). Production, with some vineyards still not in full production, is currently about 15,000 bottles annually. Winemaking is minimalistic in order to preserve the original characteristics of the grapes.
I tasted three wines at the tasting; as almost always, no colour notes:
Montecucco Rosso 2009
This is mostly sangiovese with a bit of the other red grape varieties. Slightly high nose with a juicy and berry-sweet tone, cherries, hint of tar, a bit of green peppers and stalk. Medium weight and round in the mouth, fruit sweetness, good acidity, a bit of tannin. OK length with slight oriental spiciness, stalk, hint of green peppers and a sweetish cherry tone.
Montecucco Sangiovese 2009
Slightly high, sweetish cherry nose with dry spices, herbs, hints of flowers and minerals. Medium weight, soft and delicious in the mouth, mild acidity, light tannin. Fine length with dry cherries, a bit of a greenish/stalky hint with wood tar, fresh minerals and flowers.
Montecucco Sangiovese Riserva 2007
Slightly reductive and closed, dark berry nose, juicy, hint of flowers. Medium weight in the mouth, dry, lightly juicy, with some tannin. Good length, dark/austere with cherries, minerals, hint of stalk, touch of tobacco, iron. This is rather classic young Tuscan sangiovese, with that ferrous hint of reduction that you often find among the most typical examples. Difficult to judge, from limited experience, where this will go, but would seem to have the stuffing to last for quite a while.