Towards the end of last year we made our annual trip to see Antonio and Daniela of Cantina Giardino and as always, it was one of the most rewarding of the year. Walking through their beautiful old vineyards, drinking some incredible old wines and a twelve hour lunch at our favourite trattoria, Di Pietro made sure of that but it was a wonderful bunch of new wines that made the visit even sweeter. These have just arrived in London and we are pleased to say they are just as lovely as we remember.
Cantina Giardino, Vino Bianco 2014
Their vino da tavola, a fleshy amber wine which vineyard workers are offered to quench their thirst in the field and quench it does. Mostly Fiano with some Coda di Volpe and Greco in the mix, it’s a little floral, simple and delicious. Not much more to say really. A nourishing drink that’s bottled only in magnums, it is just that sort of wine.
Cantina Giardino, Paski 2014
Coda di Volpe from the 75 year old vineyard pictured above. We often find it be the most transparent of their wines produced from this site and while this is a little more taut and tense than usual, with a little air it blossoms into a delicious drink with that hazy, crazy scent we love from this wine.
Cantina Giardino, Sophia 2014
100% Fiano from old vines, this spends six months on skins in small amphorae a friend makes out of clay from the vineyard. Here the time on solids gives flesh and edge rather than grip and a wonderful scent of tomato vines in the sunshine. The best Sophia yet.
Cantina Giardino, Volpe Rosa 2014
From just a small row of 70 year old plants planted with the extremely rare Coda di Volpe Rossa grape. The only wine we know of made solely from the varietal, the guys make just 400 or so bottles of rosato each year. It’s a lazy analogy but this often reminds us of great Poulsard, especially with a little age and no more so than in this vintage. A little reduced and cloudy upon opening, time in carafe reveals a remarkable wine. Exotic and powerful it tastes of blood orange, salt and spice. Wonderful now, but after drinking it alongside a bottle of the 2004 vintage at Trattoria Di Pietro last year, we’d certainly recommend saving some for later.
Cantina Giardino, Drogone 2010
Oh how we have missed Drogone. Here is old school Aglianico from a 70 year old vineyard in Castelfranci and a great vintage. It spends two months on skins and is aged for four years in large chestnut casks and a further year in bottle. Compact, earthy and elegant with a wonderful lick of acid, it is everything we love about the grape.