WorldWine Tasting Highlight

2011-05-10

Sardinia's Gallura - End of slumber for Sleeping Beauty?

the wines
 

No, we had not been invited to one of the legendary Bunga Bunga Parties of Italys Prime Minister Berlusconi, neither did the other passengers on our flight look as if they were regulars at George Clooney's or Roman Abramovich's homes or yachts. But our destination in fact was the Costa Smeralda, Italy's attractive tourist destination - some cynics say millionaires reserve - on the north eastern pinpoint of Sardinia, where "Berlusco" likes to spend his off-time. To be more precise: its hinterlands.

The pretence of our trip was a wine festival, organized since shortly with great success by a major hotel chain residing on the Costa Smeralda, the emerald coast, a name referring to the colour of the water. Why not, so the idea of the organizers, profit from the occasion and help regional wine producers to gain some notoriety, inviting journalists and buyers from some of the important markets?


Porto Cervo, kind of artificial world for the superrich, invented by the Aga Khan, is the setting for an annual wine festival, where Sardinia's wine world pits itself against continental Italian wine producers. (photos: E. Supp)

No sooner said than done, and there we were, the invited few, to pick our way through Gallura's hills with its fascinating rock formations and its dense "macchia", the typical scrub vegetation of the island, with the help of a brave Maria Gavina Sechi, the Wellcom agency from Alba in Piedmont and some bus drivers who did not alway exactly know where they were and wanted to go.

 
They are part of the elite of Sardinia's wine makers: Roberto Gariup of Masone Mannu (le) and the brothers Fabrizio and Mario Ragnedda of Capichera (ri).

And the wines? Well, essentially (nearly) the whole trip was organized around one single wine, the only DOCG-wine of the island, a white called Vermentino di Gallura. It is a wine which can be rough as the barren rock formations of Sardinia, and then again opulent like the glittering Costa Smeralda in full midsommer light. Which can be amazingly good and then again awfully bad whithout any possibility to distinguish the qualities by the price of the bottle. A price which mostly seems largely exaggerated, in particular if you consider the necessary markups on the way to the consumer outside Italy.


Arzachena, one of the viticultural centres in northern Sardinia, seen from the vineyards of Capichera.

The problem which vintners and winemakers are facing consists in the typicity of Vermentino, its fruity-floral flavors on the background of a marked minerality and salinity, which has to be maintained while giving the grapes the necessary time for maturing, the only way to limit the wine's sometimes overtly green and harsh acidity. It seems to be trying to square the circle but it really is the only way of maintaining authenticity and caracter while achieving quality standards requested by international consumers, an exercise which only few of the visited wineries had as yet succeeded in. But just judge yourself ...

 

You can support our work through a direct donation.

 Our complete wine database (50,000 wines)

The wines

for detailed descriptions see the German pages  

***** +Az. Vin. Capichera - 07020 Arzachena, Isola dei Nuraghi Igt Vermentino VT 2008
*****Az. Vin. Capichera - 07020 Arzachena, Isola dei Nuraghi Igt Vermentino Santigaini 2007
****Az. Vin. Capichera - 07020 Arzachena, Isola dei Nuraghi Igt Vermentino Capichera 2009
****Tenuta Masone Mannu - 07020 Monti, Vermentino di Gallura DOCG Costarenas 2009
**** Vigne Surrau - 07021 Arzachena, Vermentino di Gallura DOCG Sciala 2008
****Az. Vin. Capichera - 07020 Arzachena, Vermentino di Gallura DOCG Vigna’ngena 2009
****Az. Vin. Capichera - 07020 Arzachena, Isola dei Nuraghi rosso Igt Mantenghja 2006
****Tenuta Masone Mannu - 07020 Monti, Isola dei Nuraghi rosso Igt Mannu 2008
****Cantina Tani - 07020 Monti, Vermentino di Gallura DOCG Taerra 2010
**** Vigne Surrau - 07021 Arzachena, Vermentino di Gallura DOCG Sciala 2010
****Az. Vin. Capichera - 07020 Arzachena, Isola dei Nuraghi rosso Igt Carignano Assajé 2008
****Tenuta Masone Mannu - 07020 Monti, Vermentino di Gallura DOCG Petrizza 2010
****Tenuta Masone Mannu - 07020 Monti, Bianco dolce VdT Ammentu 2006
****Cantina Tani - 07020 Monti, Isola dei Nuraghi rosso Igt Serranu 2009
****Cantina Tani - 07020 Monti, Vermentino di Gallura DOCG Taerra 2008
****Cantina Sociale Giogantinu - 07022 Berchidda, Vermentino di Gallura DOCG Aldia 2010
**** ? Lu Beddu - Max Borrelli - 07021 Arzachena, Vermentino di Gallura DOCG Rhéna 2010
**** ?Cantina Gallura - 07029 Tempio Pausania, Vermentino di Gallura DOCG Canayli 2010
*** Vigne Surrau - 07021 Arzachena, Cannonau di Sardegna DOC Sincaru 2008
***Cantina Sociale Giogantinu - 07022 Berchidda, Colli del Limbara rosso Igt Terra Mala 2009

Kommentieren Sie diesen Artikel / Your comment

CAPTCHA

Bitte tragen Sie die untenstehenden Zeichen in das Eingabefeld ein. Captcha hilft uns bei der Vermeidung von automatisierten Eingaben.