2014 Grifalco ‘Gricos’
Region: Mt. Vulture < Basilicata < Italy
Grapes: Aglianco del Vulture
Vineyard/Cellar Stats: Certified organic farming, volcanic soils, hand harvested, grapes fermented and aged 12 months in large, old, Slavonian oak barrels
Winemaker: Fabrizio Piccin
The phrase ‘off the beaten’ path does not begin to describe the remote part of Italy where you’ll find the Grifalco farm. The province of Basilicata is basically one big extinct volcano, with just 600,000 people and extreme peaks and valleys covering 96% of the region. Which leaves not much room for building homes, planting vines…roads, transportation, modernity of any sort. Yet it is here that Fabrizio and Cecilia Piccin chose to start their project in 2004 when they sold their successful winery in Tuscany and moved south to start out anew with Aglianico. While they loved Sangiovese, they didn’t like the culture of tourism and international grape varieties that had invaded the once traditional region, and took off for a place where they could make wines in their own quiet and respectful way. It was a good decision. Their immaculate vineyard work and cellar technique, which includes no new oak, reveals a more elegant, feminine, side of Aglianico. The ‘Gricos’ is their everyday wine, made from young vines but super satisfying and substantial, without the clenching tannins and extreme rusticity that only a full side of beef to tame. Violets, black cherry and blackberries. Great acidity. This is your late season BBQ wine.