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Interview of Fanti Luca – Owner – La Palazzetta for AsiaImportNews – Exclusive
Could you please tell us the story of your winery, when it was created and how it developed decades after decades ?
For generations owned by the Fanti family, La Palazzetta thank’s to Flavio, was hired as philosophy of life and business the vineyard. If then the vineyard has the good fortune of being in Montalcino territory, which produces Brunello and Rosso di Montalcino, the character of the vine-dresser Flavio can assume poetic and mythical content but without forgetting the responsibility and hard work, which requires extreme. Today Flavio carries on his work with his wife Carla and children Tea and Luca, promoting more and more sustainability in the farm.
The Palazzetta is located in Castelnuovo dell’Abate, south-east of Montalcino with its 20 hectares of vineyards and 3,000 olive trees, all in organic farming, in the shadow of the bell tower of St. Antimo. The abbey was built by Carlo Magno, when their army, hit by the plague of return long the “Via Francigena”, find the health thanks to the herbs that grow in the Starcia valley, where today, as in the past time, is one of the vineyards of our farm, “Starcia”. The story goes that the first rows of grapes were destined to refresh the pilgrims of passage on the Via Francigena. The company also owns a small part of Mediterranean forest that in addition to protecting the biodiversity, on the whole favors the contribution of local flavors that are found in products Palazzetta. The farm also owns a small part of Mediterranean forest, contribute to protecting the biodiversity, presenting aromas of local flavors that are found in all products Palazzetta.
Our main task is therefore to exploit this wealth, preserving what nature has produced and applying the principles of organic production. Copper and sulfur, used in synergy with the “resistance inducers”, based on marine algae, allow the plant a better absorption of the elements as well as a greater resistance to disease. The presence of active limestone and abundant gravel stony present in our land, in addition to attribute good acidity to the wines, is associated to the winds in the area, an element that encourages the aromatic complexity typical of the territory. The attention and meticulous care are the result of culture and family upbringing of respect and love for the land but also of direct work in the vineyards and olive threes..
What sort of wines are you producing ?
La Palazzetta Products:
Brunello di Montalcino
The presence in the farm of vineyards that reach an ‘age of 35-40 years, allows to select, mainly from these, grapes have a higher identity character, thanks to the long interaction between vine and territory, to be allocated to the production of Brunello di Montalcino.
In the vineyards we do a careful and constant work throughout the year,to arrive at the harvest, with less compact clusters, well ventilated with better phenolic ripening. The hand-picked grapes are immediately brought to the winery, where the cold maceration, thanks to dry ice, are cooled. subsequently start the fermentation with a litle part of selected natural yeast, prepared 24-36 h before, so in each tank, stimulating the natural fermentation of yeast. This allows you to emphasize the territorial recognition. The refinement in wood lasts about three years, followed by an aging in bottle for at least six months, to capture the elegance and refinement of the tannins.
Rosso di Montalcino
A classic of Montalcino. It combines elegance and solidity typical of his more famous brother, Brunello, a immediacy and freshness that make it enjoyable from the start thanks to the important fruity tones. From vineyards of 25-30 years older, the grapes are fermenting in stainless steel and continue the aging in wood oak for 1 year. After the wine stay some months in the bottles before go in the market.
A wine very drinkable, shadow of two giants. Immediate, fresh and young, obtained only from local grapes, Sangiovese and Colorino Toscano. It is using a fermentation technique traditional with “autoctone” grapes, not grapes that you can find in other places, like merlot or cabernet. The Tuscan Colorino is in an old vineyard, used in the past, by grandparents Fanti, to make the “governo alla Toscana”, for add new sugar during the fermentation; today it is vinified together with sangiovese, for have a more immediate wine respect to Rosso and Brunello di Montalcino. Aged 1 year in french tonneaux from 5 hl.
The extra virgin olive oil
The fragrance of this oil comes from five different varieties of typical Tuscan olives grown -Frantoiano, Moraiolo, Leccino, Pendolino and Correggiolo. Before reaching full maturity are harvested and processed in the period from 15 October until about November 15 in the crusher in stainless steel, two-phase, for our use only, which guarantees maximum hygiene and a ‘reduced oxidation thanks to processing under nitrogen.
How important are your export distribution compared to national distribution ?
We export the 80% of our products outside from Italy.
What sort of distributors are your customers ?
We work directly with importers.
Why your wines are different from other wineries in your area ?
In every product La Palazzetta can enjoy its uniqueness!
from hard work, organic, in the vineyard, made directly by the whole family Flavio, Carla, Luca e Tea; the fermentation with natural yeasts; the aging in wood that seeks to not altering the fruity aromas of the production area.
In the 2016, thank’s to Wine guide “Vini Buoni d’Italia” we received the award “Ecofriendly 2016”, for this very our strong commitment on the biological, applied to all production processes, but also to the use of glass bottles for lightweight, low environmental impact, to recyclable materials….
But also, to be part, in an organization in Montalcino, “Comitato Bio”, that seeks to turn everything into biological, trying to explain to others farms, which are not organic to convert, to create a city Montalcino totally organic.
Do you produce grapes in a organic or environmental friendly method, or with general methods ?
We produce wines and extra virgin olive oil only with organic method; from 2015 we ask the organic certification, that will arrive the next year and we will put this certification in the labels!
Are your wines already distributed in Asia, and if not what are the countries you are looking for new distributors ?
At the moment the our wines are distributed in South Korea, but we’d like to expand our wines also in the other states of Asia.
We export also in the Europe and Usa.
Is there anything you want to add about your wines, story or any news ?
An other our best product is the extravergin olive oil. it is for us also very important, because we are the only farm in Montalcino and in Tuscany that have the mill used only for our self and not for others people! We buy the mill complete in stainless stell in the 2014 and we are very proud of this!
Our olive groves, cultivated with organic method, are situated on the hills that look the valley of famous abbey of St. Antimo, with different varieties, such Correggiolo, Frantoiano, Leccino, Pendolino and Moraiolo, have a very low yield of oil but of excellent quality, enriched by the characteristic aromas and taste of territory of Castelnuovo dell’Abate.
The oil obtained by cold working from our mill in stainless steel, for our use only, is rich and light, with a low acidity; it has an intense flavor like an fresh “olive juice”. The pickup, all manual, with the immediately transformation in our mill, give oil freshness and flavor that you can feel right out of the bottle. The bottling, by hand, after a natural decantation without filtering, preserves in its fullness the flavors and the typical aromas.
Thank you very much Fanti Luca – Owner – La Palazzetta for your time and answers!
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LA PALAZZETTA: www.palazzettafanti.it
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