Suvereto’s comeback

A stone’s throw from Bolgheri, there’s a series of biodynamic wineries that stand out thanks to their wines full of character

07-07-2013
A detail of La Bulichella’s cellar, an estate in

A detail of La Bulichella’s cellar, an estate in Suvereto (Livorno), +39.0565.829892: they produce 100% organic wines such as Aleatico or Coldipietrerosse, a successful blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc

Among the metal-bearing hills of Val di Cornia and the sea of the Etruscan Coast, there’s a borderland where people research and experiment in order to produce wines with a strong identity. We’re in Suvereto, a small village near Livorno, surrounded by olive groves and vineyards that flourish thanks to an excellent micro-climate, to a soil rich in minerals and to the passion of many vintners, often coming from different parts of Italy.

Carlo Parenti, the owner of Macchion dei Lupi, +39.0565.845100

Carlo Parenti, the owner of Macchion dei Lupi, +39.0565.845100

This is where Petra was born, a famous designer-cellar created by Mario Botta owned by the Moretti family, or the also famous Tenuta di Rubbia al Colle of the Muratori brothers. These important establishments sell their wines all over the world and at the same time they are sided by a constellation of small producers who are capable of creating wines that are as precious. In these lands, in fact, there are many young entrepreneurs who invested resources, energies and passion to create – from scratch – some red wines that are already becoming famous. Such as Ciparisso, a 100% Sangiovese produced by La Fralluca, and La Bulichella’s Coldipietrerosse, 75% Cabernet Sauvignon and Franc with a small addition of Petit Verdot.

The distinctive character of the wines of the area is by far their elegance. They have a roundness and a balance that seduces the palate making them different from the powerful supertuscans of nearby Bolgheri. This is because the wines from Suvereto have an identity which is the result of a different terroir – even though it is very close to that which has generated such myths as Sassicaia or Ornellaia’s Masseto – and of the hard work of many small organic and biodynamic wineries. And if the wines of La Bulichella have been appreciated already for years, there are wines produced by minuscule wineries such as Esperienze by Macchion dei Lupi (80% Cabernet Sauvignon and 20% Sangiovese), a total of 5 thousand bottles, that are pleasant and surprisingly intriguing despite the vinification process has been simplified to the utmost: no sulphites, no yeasts, no oenological products, only the goodness that the vineyard can offer.

Suvereto, near Livorno, 3,000 inhabitants

Suvereto, near Livorno, 3,000 inhabitants

And then there’s the 100% Cabernet Sauvignon Pian del Rosso by La Piana del Rosso, a clean, balanced wine with an excellent price (only 10 euros) produced by this small organic winery run by young people. Another excellent Sangiovese is Okenio by Terradonnà which has the mineral notes that are to be found in the soil, while the Petricci e Del Pianta winery has been appreciated thanks to their Nubio (100% Cabernet Sauvignon). Gualdo del Re even received the prize for Best Italian Merlot in 2013 with their Rennero (100% Merlot).

The Docg appellation will certainly act as a springboard for the launch of the wines of Suvereto which will finally be able to receive the visibility that was often blurred by the cumbersome proximity of the Bolgheri Doc. For these small local wineries, considered among the most interesting and dynamic entities on the Tuscan Coast, this will be an extra stimulus that will give them the extra courage necessary to undertake production uniting high quality and natural processes.


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