2018 La Busattina 'San Martino'
Region: Tuscany < Italy
Grapes: Trebbiano and Malvasia
Vineyard/cellar stats: Demeter-certified biodynamic farming; red sand/clay soils; destemmed and macerated on the skins, without temperature control, in steel tanks for 7-10 days, then aged for 6 months in the same containers on fine lees; bottled unfined/unfiltered with no added So2; zero-zero; 12.5% ABV
Winemaker: Emili Falcione
In the southernmost part of Tuscany in San Martino between Mount Amiata and the sea, the Falcione family has been reviving their abandoned farm since 1990, using organic principles and eventually biodynamic, becoming Demeter certified a few years later. The family owns 4.5 hectares planted only to local varieties, and their unique, high-elevation location allows for natural ventilation, making low-intervention, holistic farming according to biodynamic standards possible.
Emilio Falcione's biodynamic haven high up in the mountains, far from civilization, teems with life – geese, bees, donkeys, horses, cows, goats, and one very large dog all doing their part to keep the equilibrium of the azienda. The wines have an historic feel to them – timeless – as if they could have been made in much the same way by his Etruscan ancestors.
Like this 'La Martina', a skin-contact blend of Trebbiano and Malvasia that is old-school orange, not hipster natty orange. It is classic and textured and complex, with layers of rich citrus, ripe apricots and rocks. The tannins are there, obvious rather than grippy or mouth-drying, but their presence makes this an elegant dinner wine, rather than a frothy, fruity apertivo wine. Try with a roast chicken or anything mushroomy.