Conte della Vipera

Vintage

Classification

Umbria IGT

Blend

80%Sauvignon Blanc, 20% Sémillon

Climate

The 2012 vintage was characterized by a cold and rainless winter. Mild springtime temperatures favored bud burst. The summer season was marked by hot and dry weather which accelerated the ripening of the grapes; early-ripening varieties such as Sauvignon, even before mid-August, already showed high sugar levels. These climatic conditions caused a drop in grape production due to lack of water for the vines, a phenomenon which was even more accentuated where it was not possible to utilize drip irrigation. But the dry climate permitted a minimum recourse to spraying in the vineyards to combat vine diseases; accordingly, the impact on the environment of this practice was negligible. Careful monitoring of proper levels of ripeness and, consequently, a very timely picking of the grapes, led to a harvest of perfectly ripe grapes with an excellent rapport between sugar and acidity.

Vinification

The vineyards utilized for Conte della Vipera are located at an altitude which ranges from 825 to 1150 feet (250-350 meters) above sea level and are planted on soils which are rich in marine fossils layered with strata of clay. A terrain which gives grapes with a savory acidity and ample mineral notes. The decision to pick the Sauvignon Blanc was taken on the basis of the rapport between sugar concentration and a maximum expression of the varietal aromas of the grapes. The grape bunches, hand-picked, were immediately transported to the cellars and chilled by means of a refrigerated conveyor belt which lowered temperatures before the crop was pressed, a measure which conserved varietal character in the grapes. After a soft pressing, the must was held for several hours at a temperature of 50° Fahrenheit (10° centigrade) in order to favor a natural settling of impurities. The must was then racked into temperature-controlled stainless steel tanks where it fermented a temperatures kept at a maximum of 61° Fahrenheit (16° centigrade). Once this phase was completed, the wine was held at a temperature of 50° Fahrenheit in order to block the malolactic fermentation and maintain varietal aromas in as pristine a state as possible. The Sauvignon Blanc was then blended with the Sémillon to give a greater suppleness and further bring out the wine’s vibrantly savory character.

Historical data

The wine takes its name from the first family to own the Castello della Sala, the Monaldeschi della Vipera, and the label carries a design which shows the 15th century Saint John Chapel located on the property. The first vintage of Conte della Vipera to be produced was the 1997.

Tasting notes

A straw yellow in color with greenish highlights, Conte della Vipera is a wine with intense aromas of citrus fruits and light notes of green herbs. Firm in body and well balanced, the flavors are both savory and sweetly ripe with notes of grapefruit on the finish and aftertaste