We were happy of being involved on the tasting presentation during ProWein 2015 of 12 selected base wines to become future products of Codice Citra brand, the leading wine producer in the Abruzzi. Even though there is not an ancient tradition for Abruzzo sparkling wines, it has always supplied other regions for base wines.
Native grape varieties from Abruzzi has been evaluated to find the optimal base wine for sparkling wines produced either by Charmat-Martinotti method (pressure tanks) or traditional Champenois method. Both indigenous and selected neutral yeast has been used for fermentation in experimental microvinification. The project has been developed by Codice Citra and its member wineries, together with C.Ri.V.E.A. (Research consortium on viticulture and oenology of Abruzzi) and the University of Teramo.
Codice Citra accounts a large surface of vineyards in the province of Chieti so it allowed selecting diverse areas from pedological and morphological characteristics. Different pruning techniques have been used to see different malic acid levels at ripeness. It is quite surprising how climate changes in few kilometres from Adriatic Sea up to a permanent glacier!
The native varieties chosen for sparkling wines production has been:
Montepulciano, blanc de noirs, base wine. Fine notes of raw almond and anise. Nice acidity and light body.
Montonico. Quite oxidative nose in both samples tasted but important structure and acidity.
Cococciola (related to Trebbiano). More intense colour. Green notes of cut herbs and citric acidity.
Pecorino. White fruits and mineral notes, saltiness.
Passerina. Sweet notes of lime tree and celery, almond flowers.
The last four samples were dedicated to sparkling wines obtained by Italian method (6 weeks in pressure tanks), in this case we preferred Pecorino and Coccociola as easy drinking, fruity and floral primary aromas.
As a last present from Chief Winemaker Lino Olivastri we could enjoy a Pecorino 2012, non-sulphites still wine, with quince and burnt caramel notes on the nose, fine smoky scents and perfectly balanced and still young in the mouth!
Let’s see how the chosen varieties and blend evolved for the next months and we hope to taste the final products!