Italian varieties shrunk from oblivion: Grazie Ronchi di Cialla

Ronchi di Cialla Selection (photo by SZ)

Finding old, almost extinct wine varieties and revitalizing them is a global trend with the basic intent of discovering the new, often astonishing flavors that bring discomfort to tasteless buds, accustomed to more uniform, almost boring smells and flavors in the wines offered on the market. Fear of possible rejection and even greater fear of potential financial loss are the reasons we should take care of, but just to appreciate the courage of those winemakers and winemakers who are ready to accept the risk and go into a wine adventure they never really know how to finish - unless they are black!

Dina and Paolo Rapuzzi and their sons Ivan i Pierpaolo are definitely in the group enological adventurer: Beginning with '70. year parents left the job at Olivetti and moved to Furlania, a province with a long tradition of grape growing and founding a family estateRonchi of Ciallalocated in DOC (Denomination of Controlled Origin) wine regionFriuli Orient Hills, which borders the famous Gorje Hills (Collio Goriziano DOC) in the east.
Reason: Paul was very, very fond of wine!

There were records that describe growing of vines still in 13. century on slopes of hills (Ronchi you can translate a Furlian dialect as vineyard cultivated hill) valleys CIAL, surrounded by forests of chestnut, oak and wild cherries. However, as in the rest of Europe, wine diseases such as peronospore and phylloxera have destroyed nurseries and autochthonous varieties such asschioppettine are almost extinct. If we add that this area was the first front line in both world wars, it is clear in what state of affairs it was not just a winemaking but also the economy as a whole, since the majority of the population was either wounded or wounded.

Ronchi di Cialla's philosophy has been the breeding of exclusively autochthonous varieties such as Schioppettino, Picolit, Pignolo, Verduzzo, Ribolla Gialla, Refosco dal Peduncolo Rosso and Friulano, which perfectly utilized the microclimatic conditions of the combination of the Julian Alps and the Mediterranean's warmth. The biggest problem was to find grape vines, so in two years the whole area of ​​the area was hardly found 60 of living chamois schioppettina, and the like was with refosco dal peduncolo rossom! Departing from Milan with a desire to live in harmony with nature and tradition is another important postulate of the Ronchi di Cialla house: vineyards, but also dense natural forested environment is carried out in accordance with biodynamic and organic cultivation, and vinification is completely natural. Unlike most other winemakers, Rapuzzijevi they did not grope for the woods, nor trimmed grass or sowed some strange seeds in their wines and how they felt ... oh, yes - the first and less experienced vineyards and vine growers realize that they have a wine with a special taste in the glass!

Result: This wine area is officially recognized by the competent ministry as Grand Cru 1995. year and that for Verduzzo, Picolit i yellow riblet white sorts you refosco from the red peduncle i Schioppettino from red varieties, and the Ronchi di Cialla wine-growing company has gained a reputation on the world market as one of the most prominent wine producers that are suitable for many years in bottles, even for a few decades.

Respecting the traditional, natural vinification that did not sow wine for rapid transformation and accelerated aging, Rapuzzi's first began producing white wine in barrique barrels (1977. year) of French oak (with the red before only Antinori) and toasted oak sticks, one of the oldest natural stabilization methods of wine. After resting in barrels, wines have been meditating for a long time in bottles that are serially numbered to full maturity.

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Yellow Rib 2017

Wines for daring
This is Saturday, along with many guests wine bar Bastion No. 19 at Masaryk Street, had the opportunity to taste 4 of the eight label Ronchi di Cialla, two white and 2 red wines organized by the distributor Roto Dinamica. And for three of the four denominators is the same: exciting, uncompromising, fresh and something completely different from the wines we meet at the Zagreb wine bars and restaurants.

Yellow Rib 2017
The wine with which we opened the evening is one of the best to drink while it is young. Gialla's Rib was a dry white wine macerated for at least one day, then fermented it in stainless steel barrels at a strictly controlled temperature and then set the 3 months on the soil of its own yeast with a mild stirring, so it was not surprisingly rich in flavor and aroma. Pale yellow in color of green, glossy, elegant bouquetwith notes of apples and pearls. Balanced acids and minerals, with pronounced slowness, are consistent, fresh and long-lasting. It can also be served as an aperitif, and is recommended for fish, shellfish, cold cuts and vegetables.

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Ciallabianco 2015

Ciallabianco 2015
Swan of three varieties: 60% Ribolla Gialla, 30% Verduzzo friulano, 10% Picolit is a complex and well-balanced wine of yellow color that patiently rewards incredible changes in the glass; with time it becomes intriguing oily, and the smell of acacia is finally blown in the foreground. Ciallabianco fermented in oak barrels and drained slightly less than a year, after which the old bottles, 6-12 months. Pure elegance, unobtrusive, yet character and rounded. Definitely with the potential of aging, if you can refrain from opening it as soon as you reach it from the police.
And with this wine you can start your dinner, and along with the seafood, you will find freshwater and sea fish, white meat meals and Ham of Parma.

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Ribolla Nera 2016

Ribolla Nera 2016
Only wine that did not impress us. The first smell was pulled on - the acidic cabbage - and although it had disappeared completely and replaced by the scent of old skin - there was no salvation, at least in our gray cells that still have the ability to short-term memory. Glossy ruby ​​colors thanks to maceration without tearing the skin, the fifth of the doughs in barrels up to one year and a half, the rest in stainless steel, and then at least a year in the bottle.
This schioppettino is from the same area above the Cialla Valley, only from younger vineyards, so - in order to distinguish it from the older brother - it was named Ribola Nera, which is actually another name schioppettino.
Light tannins, looks pretty, but stuck to our nose.
Feta with meat dishes with a griddle, but also a tuna.

Hack 2013
For the rest, we left the wicker barrow: a rich and elegant red wine of striking taste, full and rounded. There is no loophole in it: in the barrels (up to the 18 months), which in the bottle (up to three years), the long-lived native from the slopes of the valley Cialla can experience 15 to 20 years, with special harvesting and much more. When we saw this, we drank it puuunoooo too early. And after decanting, character bouquet it did not disappear, the smell of spices, tobacco, grass, and soft fruit constantly poured into the nose cells, and the specific taste of white pepper had long kept in the mouth. The acidity is so great that you want something to eat: game, mushroom dishes, and roasted white and red meat are ideal accompanists.

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Cialla 2013 Heap