La Bioca - Daje Mach Langhe Rosso, Palaverga, Piemonte, Italy (2020)
An intense, fragrant bouquet with strawberries and a spicy character. On the palate there is a subtle hint of black pepper.
The Pelaverga grape is a fascinating and rare breed in Piemonte these days owing to the success of Nebbiolo and Barbera. It is stylistically halfway between Nebbiolo and Pinot Noir, and makes for earlier drinking reds from a region famed for having to wait forever for its wines to mature.
The grapes are destemmed and macerated on the skins for 72 hours, with 2 pump-overs every day in a steel tank with temperature control. The fermentation lasted about 9 days followed by another maceration of about 15 days. After fermenting dry, the wine is aged for 10 months in wooden barrels of different capacities.
Although their practices and quality are up there with many of the top producers in the region, they differ in that they are not a centuries old or even generations old winery. In fact, they are completely unique in the Langhe. La Bioca is the brainchild of Bisso Atanassov, a Bulgurian winemaker, who decided that he simply had to move to the Langhe and make wine there.
Today they possess around 8 hectares of vineyards spread over Barolo, Barbaresco and across the Langhe. Almost everything, from the humble 'entry-level' whites and reds to the illustrious crus, is micro-vinified, highlighting each individual commune or parcel from which the grapes were harvested. Always elegant, expressive of their terroir and utterly delicious.