One of my favorite trends in wine these days is how the Italians have all started investing heavily in land and are reclaiming native varieties on native soils. This is a good thing for wine. No offense to the Pinot Grigio lovers, but we don’t need more PG – we need more interesting, “geeky”, delicious wines and those Italy has by the hundred.
No one has embraced this new/old spirit more than Feudi di San Gregorio and the revolution they’ve sparked in Campania – what has now become one of the inspirations of the international sommelier set.
When a devastating earthquake rocked the region in late 1980, killing thousands and leaving 300,000 homeless, it could have spelled the end to much of the region’s 3,000 year history of wine making.
But for Enzo Ercolino, who had escaped the backwater years before for Rome – it was the exact opposite. He and his brothers decided to start Feudi di San Gregorio from amongst the ruins and vacated vineyards.
As they did, they brought in world-class consultants – like the late Denis Dubourdieu and the Italian superstar enologist, Riccardo Cotarella. What the consultants discovered was that the terroir at San Gregorio was completely unique to the wine world – high altitude wines, kissed by sea breezes in volcanic soils and in some cases pre-phylloxera vineyards over 150 years old. Game changing news.
They separated their vineyards into over 700 micro-plots and crafted a plan for each to drive maximum expression and purity of the historic grapes that grew in each tiny region. It was a mountain of work but after a few years, the accolades started to roll in.
As the wine world finally caught on to the tiny backwater revolution they had begun, the trickle of accolades developed into a deluge. Several hundred 90+ scores, a few dozen Tre Bicchieri awards from Gambero Rosso, several ‘Winery/Wines of the Year’ nods.
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92 Points, James Suckling
Lots of green pear and lime with some stone and almond undertones. It’s full-bodied, layered and very intense with beautiful fruit and focus. Very typical.
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