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Focus on our grape verieties: Malvasia Nera or Tempranillo? by Seila Bruschi, WSET Somm.

Our most rare wine is the Supertuscan "Arteliquida Rosso", sorted from just 2 ha of the ancient grape Malvasia Nera, or Tuscan Tempranillo. Let's explore the origin of this mysterious grape!

Supertuscan "Arteliquida Rosso"is made with 100% Malvasia Nera grape!

Monte-Chiaro "Arteliquida Rosso" Supertuscan 100% Malvasia Nera

Malvasia Nera or Tempranillo?

The name Malvasia is originated from Monembasia, a Byzantine stronghold in the Peloponneso that supplied the Republic of Venice of sweet wines that it distributed in the Malvase (ancient Osterias). Malvasia become an umbrella name for cuttings to produce popular wines. Probably the Tempranillo moved from Spain to Tuscany because of commercial exchanges beetween the maritime republics or was brought in the eighteenth century by pilgrims who traveled the Via Francigena to Rome. Thanks to a Genetic University Research about DNA origins, the identity of the old clones of the Tuscan Malvasia Nera has been revealed confirming the presence of the Tempranillo in Tuscany.

Who, Where, What?

Tempranillo takes its name from temprano, because it ripens early. Tempranillo has been grown on the Iberian Peninsula since the time of Phoenician settlements. It is the main grape used in Rioja, and is often referred to as Spain's noble grape. For many years it was ignored outside the Spanish borders, because it was considered a rustic and agrarian wine. Instead, from the 90s, thanks to the Gallo family, that of California has been cleared as a wine of some interest, especially if removed from contact with the new American wood.

Tempranillo is an early ripening variety that tends to thrive in chalky vineyard soils such as those of the Ribera del Duero region of Spain. In Portugal, where the grape is known as Tinto Roriz and Aragonez, it is blended with others to produce port wine. To get elegance and acidity out of Tempranillo, you need a cool climate. But to get high sugar levels and the thick skins that give deep color you need heat. In Spain these two opposites are best reconciled in the continental climate but high altitude of the Ribera del Duero. Others names: Tinto del Toro, Tinto Fino, and Tinto del Pais (Rioja); Tinta Roriz & Aragonez (Portugal)

One of our best client, enjoying the spicy notes of the Moon...

What Does Tempranillo Wine Taste Like?

Spanish Tempranillo delivers contrasting flavors of leather and cherries. The finer the wine, the more balance there is between earth and fruit. The finish is typically smooth and lingers with the taste of tannin on both sides of your mouth. Tempranillo wines from New World regions, including Argentina, Mexico, and the United States, generally offer more fruit flavors like cherry, plum, tomato, and dried fig followed by chunky tannins and less earthy notes as cedar, leather, tobacco, vanilla, dill, and cloves.

Sveta harvesting Malvasia Nera at Montechiaro!

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