Source: jamessuckling.com. Issue Date: Monday, August 24, 2020 (JS-97)
Very subtle aromas of cherries, bark, black truffles and flowers. Hints of crushed stones. It’s full-bodied, yet very tight and solid with a very tight, minerally structure. Very long and intense. Racy and bright at the end. Powerful, orange-peel and citrus-fruit undertones. Salty and minerally. This needs time to develop in the bottle. Extremely structured. A wine not to touch until after 2023.
Source: August 2020 Week 3, The Wine Advocate; Issue Date: 20th Aug 2020 (RP-94)
The 2018 Testamatta shows elegant Sangiovese purity and transparency, starting with delicate wild berry and blueberry tones and finishing long with pretty accents of crushed limestone and a touch of campfire ash. In the glass, the wine is radiant and vivid with a luminous ruby or garnet color. Oak use is reduced to a bare minimum, with barrels that are up to their 16th year of use. "The older they are, the better," Bibi explains. As the wine opens in the glass, it presents pretty lilac and violet. This wine represents a blend of fruit from various sites (all with old vines that are farmed organically) across the region of Tuscany. The northern-most sites close to Florence tend to add the floral notes that are so characteristic of this cool vintage (which saw a bit more rain than average and extra work in the vineyards to kept these vines healthy). I visited the vineyards with Bibi in 2018 and remember how beautiful the grapes appeared on the vines. Much of the fruit used here comes from the Vigna del Cancello in Casciano del Murlo, which is midway between Siena and Montalcino. These southern sites give the wine its backbone and tannins. Bibi Graetz tells me that he struggled to create the blend for this 60,000-bottle release. He decided on a final blend, only to change his mind and re-blend two and a half months later. His second stab was specifically aimed at capturing finesse and softening the wine's tannic imprint. Indeed, the wine ultimately offers more in length (with fresh fruit flavors and bright acidity) than it does in power or mid-palate. The finish is silky, long and very fine.
Drink Date 2022 - 2042
The “Crazy-head” "Testamatta” – “crazy-head” in Italian - is the best word to describe Bibi Graetz: a positive, creative and passionate person. Testamatta wine expresses the purity, minerality and transparency of Sangiovese from old vines on the top of the hills characterized by soils rich of stones. A Supertuscan made with 100% Sangiovese, result of the combination of tradition and creativity.
Winemaker’s Tasting Notes
Sangiovese 100% “The elegance of Sangiovese variety is always the main character of Testamatta wine. This vintage shows how Sangiovese can be fresh, fruity on one hand, elegant, long and persistent on the other. 2018 is rich of blackberries and blueberries, earthy hints, light mineral undertone. It has a pronounced intensity accompanied by silky and important tannins that give to the wine a long aftertaste. This Testamatta is persistent and rich of finesse, one of the greatest I have ever made. Bibi Graetz Vintage 2018: the growing season Balance and harmony are the best words to describe 2018 vintage in Tuscany. The seasons were mild and stable, this led to a full vegetative development with light advance and to a superb vintage in terms of quality of the berries. The summer had been great characterized by excellent sun exposure during day and refreshing nights. We started the harvest at the end of September and concluded it during the mid of October. Vinification and Ageing Testamatta grapes are selected and sourced from the best 5 vineyards of the winery: Vincigliata, Londa, Lamole, Montefili and Siena. Each vineyard, divided in parcels, is harvested up to 8 times, making sure all the grapes are picked at the perfect ripening point. The 5 old-age vineyards, (up to 80 yrs old) are located in different areas of Tuscany: Lamole & Montefili in the heart of Chianti Classico at 600 and 400 meters altitude, Vincigliata nearby Firenze at 280 meters altitude, Londa at north of Firenze, towards the Rufina valley and Siena in the south of Tuscany at 250 meters altitude. The hand-picked grapes, selected in the vineyards firstly and later for the second time at the winery, are destemmed and then soft pressed. The fermentations are conducted by natural and indigenous yeasts, in open top barriques (225L) without any temperature control and “bleedings” neither, with 6 manual punch-down per day. After 7-10 days of maceration, the different parcels are moved into old barriques for 22 months.
Estimated Arrival in Singapore: Jan/Feb 2021