Producer Profile: Idyllic Perugia, the fortified capital city at the heart of the Italian “heartland,” Umbria: the only completely landlocked province of this famous old boot. Crossed by the River Tiber beset among an irregular cluster of hills that look out over the famous Lake Trasimeno as well as the Umbra River Valley, this is a place nearly sick with beauty. For Carlo Tabarrini, however, it is simply home. Having grown up in Umbria, his family was composed of farmers who – among their crop – tended to some grapes, most of which they’d sell though some was kept for the production of house wine. The vineyard has always represented something idyllic to him, with its store of childhood memories, among them being carried on his father’s shoulders through the vines and getting plopped behind the wheel of the family’s tractor to take it for a spin while sat next to his father and grandfather. It’s easy to see why the vine would beckon; after a career working in a chocolate factory (Perugina is the company – Perugia is world-famous for its chocolate, and have an annual chocolate festival that is as popular as you might imagine), Carlo slowly made his way back to the vine. Over the course of 6 years he’d work two jobs, leasing some vines in Sant’Enea (hamlet outside Perugia) and beginning to cultivate them while also working in the factory. In 2009, he was finally able to leave & dedicate himself full-time to wine. These are made according to the playful, hands-off maxims he’d learned watching his father and grandfather make their delicious lo-fi house wines way back in the day. There is that ineffable homespun, generous quality to these wines – they are real treats borne by the heart in the Italian heartland.
Vinification & Tasting: An uber light red destined for pre-Thanksgiving dinner, with a crunchy texture and zingy hints of pomegranate. 100% Sangiovese from vines grown on marl, limestone and clay in Umbria. Grapes are hand-harvested, destemmed and macerated on the skins for 10 days. Fermented in stainless steel and fiberglass with wild yeasts, and aged in both neutral oak and stainless steel. Unfined, unfiltered, with no SO2.