Cont'Ugo

Vintage

Classification

Bolgheri DOC

Blend

100% Merlot

Climate

A warm winter, followed by a somewhat early spring, led a slightly precocious bud burst. Regular springtime weather together with a rather cool summer with occasional rain favored a long growing season without stress on the vines. An August heat wave, tempered by breezes off the sea, then assisted in recovering ripening time. The September climate was ideal, fine weather, low humidity, and temperature swings from daytime heat to useful evening and nighttime coolness.
In a few words: 2011 was difficult in terms of the picking and of the selection of the grapes on the sorting tables, but very satisfying in terms of the results obtained.

Vinification

Grapes were selected from the 100 acres (40 hectares) of proprietary Merlot  vineyards. After hand picking and a careful selection in the cellars, the grapes were fermented in temperature-controlled stainless steel tanks approximately 25 days. Fermentation temperatures were based on the ripeness of the grapes, some at lower temperatures to conserve aromatic freshness, others around 86° Fahrenheit (30° centigrade) to extract more substance and structure. The results, a series of different styles of Merlot, were then aged separately in small oak barrels. The wines went through a malolactic fermentation in oak (30% new) before the end of the year. After eight months of aging in French oak, the finest lots were blended and then given an additional four months of aging in barrel before bottling.
The aging in bottle before release lasted a further ten months.

Historical data

The Guado al Tasso estate is located some 50 miles (80 kilometers) to the southwest of Florence near the medieval village of Bolgheri. The property, approximately 2500 acres (1000 hectares) in size, stretches from the Mediterranean coast to the hills in the interior and includes, in addition to 750 acres (300 hectares) of vineyards, fields of wheat, barley, and oats, olive groves, and woods in which a herd of “cinta senese” pigs, a prized local breed, are raised.

Tasting notes

The wine shows aromas of cherries, wild cherries, and raspberries along with notes of the aromatic herbs of Mediterranean brush land. On the palate, it is savory, balanced, and resonant. This is an interpretation of the land and climate of Bolgheri through the use solely of Merlot grapes from the 2011 vintage. Fragrance and abundant youthful fruitiness are its characterizing elements. It is a profound wine, complex, extremely pleasurable and vibrant.