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From Harvest to Vinification of a special wine in Le Marche: Cimaio 2012 Casalfarneto

This is a white Wine produced from pure verdicchio grapes of hills of Le Marche Region in Central Italy attacked by Botrytis Cinerea Mold. Yes, the same mold involved in the vinification of Sauternes or Tokai wines
The grapes, which are completely covered by the 'noble mould', are harvested in an exceptionally advanced stage of ripeness. In general this happen at the end of November and the beginning of December, but this 2012 the right conditions were reached earlier at the end of september.
The grapes are taken to the winery in small baskets to avoid damages
The awarded wine is obtained using white wine vinification methods:
• Crushing of whole grape clusters
• Extraction of the flower must only
• Must clarification by cold settling
• Temperature controlled fermentation
• Aging in part in burnt wood barrels and in part in stainless steel tanks where full maturity is reached after 18-24 months
• Tartaric stabilisation refrigeration at -4° C for 6 days
• Cold sterile bottling with microfiltration
• Aging in bottles for at least 6-12 months
Mariano Pallottini's insight:

In the Botrytis infection known as "noble rot" (pourriture noble in French, or Edelfäule in German), the fungus removes water from the grapes, leaving behind a higher percent of solids, such as sugars, fruit acids and minerals.
In the extraordinary case of the Cimaio, the noble rot on the Verdicchio Grapes, is able to produce a wine with very persistent sweet note of vanilla followed by hints of ripe quince, honey, ripe loquats, yellow plums, almonds and spicy nuances. The taste is robust, mellow and warm with fruity notes of scent, mineral, sapid and very persistent.


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Wines and People
The Le Marche region has a lot to offer to wine lovers. There are 5 DOCG wines and 16 DOC wines. From the prestigious and famous Verdicchio, to the Vernaccia di Serrapetrona, from the Offida Pecorino to the Offida Passerina. Also: Bianchello del Metauro, Colli Maceratesi, Colli Pesaresi, Esino, Falerio dei Colli Ascolani, I Terreni di Sanseverino, Lacrima di Morro d'Alba, Rosso Conero, Pergola, Rosso Piceno, San Ginesio Many of these wines are little known outside of Italy but visitors to the region have a pleasant surprise when they try the local wine produced by many small aziendas and cantinas.
Curated by Mariano Pallottini