2015 Valentina Passlacqua ‘Terra Minuta’
Region: Puglia < Italy
Grapes: Fiano Minutolo, Greco
Vineyard/Cellar Stats: Certified biodynamic farming; marble soil (limestone/calcite); grapes are hand-harvested at the end of August and macerated on skins 1-2 weeks before being pressed (one of Valentina’s tricks); then the two are blended in a stainless steel tank and not touched for months (no racking); bottled unfined/unfiltered with zero-added SO2; 12% ABV
Winemaker: Valentina Passlacqua
Valentina Passalacqua is a trailblazing young natural winemaker in Puglia, a region not exactly known for biodynamic, no sulfur wines. She took over her family’s land (used only for cattle grazing since 1900), located inside Gargano National Park, to create a diverse farm that includes indigenous grape varietals. Her family considered the land too difficult, too poor, for crops, not realizing that they were actually sitting on a precious marble mine – or soil that happens to be amazing for vines. The rocky, mineral-rich soil does not retain water (also great for vines), and proximity to the sea means cooling breezes and ventilation (another plus). Valentina’s wines are pure, elegant, never soupy as you sometimes see in whites from Puglia (it’s hot there). This blend of Fiano Minutolo (aka Minutolo, not your everyday Fiano) and Greco is fresh, vibrant, structured, full of green almond, mineral, and unripe peaches. Amazing food wine – seafood, veggies, turkey burger, yes!