Ampeleia Un Litro - Biodynamic, Organic
Elisabetta Foradori is one of the world's great winemakers; she runs two wineries, her eponymous one in the Dolomites, where she singlehandedly from the age of 19 revived the almost extinct grape Teroldego; and Ampeleia, her coastal Tuscan winery, where she works with grapes mostly associated with the Rhône Valley and Spain (Grenache, Mourvèdre, Alicante Bouschet, Carignan, etc).
At both wineries she follows meticulous organic viticultural practices, and tends to let the grapes speak for themselves, without a lot of oak to muddy up the flavors.
"Ampeleia is one of the stars of the Tuscan coast.....At their best, the Ampeleia wines are among the most pure, transparent expressions of the coast readers will find. Elisabetta Foradori and her team are doing important work here. Ampeleia is a young estate. There is every reason to believe the best is yet to come." —Antonio Galloni, Vinous
Ampeleia was born in 2002 from the collaboration and friendship between Elisabetta Foradori, Thomas Widmann, and Giovanni Podini; they saw in Ampeleia a place where they could not only develop an agricultural project but also fulfill a common vision. The project aspires to represent the inherent diversity and huge potential of this particular area of Maremma, the "Colline Metallifere," which are not the coastal lowlands one usually associates with the Maremma, but mineral-rich hills that have been mined since Etruscan times.
The estate results from the purchase of different plots of land, located far apart and on different altitude levels, with the precise aim of creating a great variability in altitude, soil type and microclimatic conditions; each vineyard has a distinctive identity that is enhanced by the uniqueness of the surrounding environment. Variety is the keystone and soul of Ampeleia. In fact, variety represents the project’s constant quality, both physically and symbolically, and is harmoniously expressed in its wines that taste of the varied lands of the area around the village of Roccatederighi. Many of the grape varieties that have been planted in Ampeleia are common in Mediterranean farmlands. In past times, vineyards were not planted with just one grape variety but many types of grapes were present and they were all harvested at the same time; the vineyards at Ampeleia reflect this tradition.
Un Litro is a blend of "Mediterranean basin varietals" this vintage is a blend of Grenache, Carignan, and Alicante Bouschet from the coastal Maremma district of Tuscany, packaged up in a fun squat bottle.
The varieties were harvested and vinified separately. A small part of the harvest undergoes carbonic maceration, the rest is either done whole berry or crushed. Spontaneous natural yeast fermentations. Aged six months in cement tanks.
Vineyards are certified organic, practicing Biodynamic. Unlitro is meant to be a young and elegant quaffable wine. Slightly built but finely toned, the body of this wine is deceptively taut, its grippy texture belying its soft fruitiness, its light color, and of course the playfulness of the packaging.