2016 Quarticello Despina
Region: Val d'Enza < Emilia Romagna < Italy
Grapes: Malvasia di Candia
Vineyard/Cellar Stats: Certified organic farming with biodynamic practices, gravely sand-clay soils; made in the traditional method, with secondary fermentation in bottle to complete dryness, then aged in bottle 8 months; unfined/unfiltered with zero added SO2; 11.5% ABV
Winemaker: Roberto Maestri
Quarticello began in 2001 when the Maestri family purchased 8 hectares in Emilia-Romagna and Roberto's grandfather began making wine as a hobby. But Roberto fell in love with the land and with the vines so he took off to study viticulture and enology and returned permanently in 2006 to make wine using only indigenous grapes and no chemical inputs, old school wines that truly reflected their place. From the start, Roberto worked organically and now employs many biodynamic practices. His bubbles are made the traditional way here in Emilia, with the second fermentation completed in the bottle - so technically traditional method and not pet’nat. Despina is 100% Malvasia di Candia, a local aromatic varietal. After the first fermentation in big barrel, Roberto adds a little must from the same vineyard before bottling to kickstart a second fermentation.
We’re in love with this lightly sparkling, cloudy, utterly joyful wine, full of salty mineral and grapefruit zing. It tastes like Sweet Tarts! Like if you dissolved sweet tarts in sparkling water! And brings us back to the happy, carefree days when you could ride your bike until dusk and no one worried that they hadn’t seen you since 10am. Before kids, before Corona Virus, before life got so damn complicated #takemeback