Tenuta Monteti Caburnio 2013 - Maremma, Tuscany

The Tenuta Monteti estate lies in the beautiful hills in the south of Tuscany in Maremma. Capalbio is the home to the winery in between the provinces of Livorno and Grosseto. The estate is named after the local mountain that defends the vineyards from salty winds that blow in from the Mediterranean. This creates an ideal microclimate to which their vines greatly benefit, protected, from the close proximity of the sea. 

The visionary behind Tenuta Monteti is Paolo Baratta. He has worked in politics, worked for the ministry of agriculture and is currently the President of the Venice Biennale. He has a long history of serving the public and ultimately decided to start the winery after turning 60. He came to the realization that he wanted to expand on his passions and really wanted something to work on in his private life. Paolo wanted to produce wines of substance and find varietals that would be grown to perfection for Monteti. He did not simply believe in planting varietals that were typical, regional or even expected to be worked in the area. in 1998, he and his wife, Gemma, found the land he wanted and he hired the ardent oenologist Carlo Ferrini to assist in executing his vision. After detailed soil analysis, they pioneered the planting of the four major Bordeaux red wine grapes plus Alicante Bouschet. Monteti was born.

The soil at Tenuta Monteti is a complex, stony structure on a clay substrate. This allows excellent drainage, maintaining freshness and humidity deep below ground. The land was laboriously flattened in order to keep the gradient to under seven percent and the 25 hectares (62 acres) of vineyards were densely planted. Massive stones were excavated and a lot of them surround Monteti today. Every varietal grown is vinified and aged separately in their state of the art winery, then blended, then placed in bottle until ready for release. 

Paolo's focus continues in making wines that reflect where they are grown with a strong emphasis on using lower sulfites with minimal vineyard & cellar intervention. Monteti obtained the V.I.V.A. Sustainable Wine Certification by the Italian Ministry for the Environment in 2016. It is quite a task to obtain this certification as V.I.V.A. focuses on four indicators to assess and improve sustainability performance. Air, water, territory and vineyard are all the key indicators that are closely examined and the process has taken several vintages. There are few wineries in Italy with this accreditation. 

The winery makes two wines, but our focus for this blog is on their Caburnio. The 2013 vintage just arrived and it is a blend of mostly Cabernet Sauvignon (60%), Merlot (20%), Alicante Bouschet (10%) and a little Petit Verdot (5%) and Cabernet Franc (5%). Half the wine is aged in stainless steel and the other half in barriques and tonneaux made of medium-toasted French oak, of which a quarter to a third are new.

Tenuta Monteti is arguably one of the best values in the world for Cabernet Sauvignon that actually tastes like where it is grown. The 2013 has pure cherry fruit, with real balance and elegance and enough acidity to keep everything precise. That may be typical for a Cabernet, but what we are impressed with is that it tastes undeniably Italian — whether it’s the fragrant herb/spice on the palate, the terroir, dark fruits, easy drinkability or something else we are not sure, but it definitely tastes of Tuscany, which is probably the highest compliment one can put on a wine. 

Tenuta Monteti Caburnio should be at the top of your list for "go-to" red wines to try for staying warm, enjoying some heartier fare and relaxing this winter. We know you will not be disappointed. #tuscany #winterdrink #maremma #drinkup #supertuscan #cabernetsauvignon #italianwine #realwine #saluti