Agricole Gussalli Beretta – A year of celebration

Lo Sparviere in Franciacorta DOCG, Italy
Lo Sparviere in Franciacorta DOCG, Italy

Lo Sparviere

Lo Sparviere was founded by Monique Poncelet Gussalli Beretta in 1974, at a time when Franciacorta was a young DOC, with barely a dozen producers of sparkling wine. It was the first of the group of high-profile estates which went on to shape the modern history of Metodo Classico in Italy. The first bottles from the estate were released in 1984 followed, in time, by the wines which now form a comprehensive portfolio, based predominantly on Chardonnay, ranging from fresh non-vintage cuve?es through to mature Riservas with long lees ageing.

Creating balance and intensity

The property’s organically managed vineyards extend over 30ha in the communes of Monticelli Brusati and Provaglio d’Iseo, in the northeast of the Franciacorta DOCG zone. Calcareous marl soils, which differ markedly from the typical glacial moraine of Franciacorta, give structure to the wines. Meanwhile, the cool mesoclimate of sites stretching up to 300 metres above sea level offers the crucial benefits of delaying grape ripening and preserving acidity, which determines the crisp intensity and finesse of the house style.

Individual plots across the estate are harvested separately on the basis of exposure and the age of the vines. In the words of winemaker Francesco Polastri, ‘Lo Sparviere is an artisan winery that treats every land parcel as if it were unique’. Each plot is then vinified separately in what Poalstri describes as the ‘bespoke management of every base wine’. Subsequent blending of the different cuve?es (ten in the case of the Brut Cuve?e 7 – the latest addition to the range) creates balance and complexity, which is the other hallmark of the estate.

Lo Sparviere, Franciacorta Extra Brut Rose? Monique

Lo Sparviere, Franciacorta Extra Brut Rose? Monique
Named in honour of the founder of the estate and first produced in 2004, Rose? Monique is sourced from the Sergnana vineyard – planted with Pinot Noir vines only – in Provaglio d’Iseo. This exclusive 600-bottle edition was created to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the foundation of the estate, which happily coincides with the 20th anniversary of its first release.

The pale coral shade, delicate mousse and super-fine perlage are an impeccable introduction to a wine with complex aromas of red fruit and citrus, sweet aromatic herbs, an enticing saline-mineral nuance. The palate holds great intensity, concentration, a wonderful creamy dry texture and infinite length. Tantalisingly rare and absolutely outstanding. Disgorged in October 2023, after 48 months on the lees. Drinking 2024-2030+
99 points

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In addition to Lo Sparviere, the Agricole Gussalli Beretta (AGB) group manages four other estates in prestigious areas of northern and central Italy. Their distinctive terroirs, and in particular their location in cooler climate zones, makes them notably resistant to the more extreme effects of climate change.

Each estate is managed autonomously, with its own staff and specialised external consultants but there is a collective emphasis on terroir expression, as well as elegance and finesse in the winemaking. These features are exemplified by the Castello di Radda estate in Chianti Classico and Fortemasso in the Langhe of Piemonte.

Castello di Radda estate winery in Radda, Chianti, Italy

Castello di Radda

The organic Castello di Radda estate is located in Radda, a village that is home to some of the highest sites in Chianti Classico. The estate was completely replanted with predominantly Sangiovese when AGB arrived in 2003. The property includes just under 40ha of vineyard, including a plot in the prestigious cru of Vertine in nearby Gaiole. The combination of the cool climate and stony galestro soils makes for wines of firm structure and aromatic intensity.

Castello di Radda, Chianti Classico 2021

Castello di Radda, Chianti Classico 2021
A fragrant, expressive nose with notes of iris, dark berries, tea leaf and a whiff of iodine preludes a palate with firm fibre and just the right touch of severity in…

Source : https://www.decanter.com/sponsored/agricole-gussalli-beretta-a-year-of-celebration-525049/