Elizabeth Foradori has done it again.
Italy’s rising star continues to shine brighter and brighter and her newest project, Ampeleia, set in the Tuscan coast, is worthy of all the hype. “Ampeleia is one of the stars of the Tuscan coast,” reports Antonio Galloni. “At their best, the Ampeleia wines are among the most pure, transparent expressions of the coast readers will find…Elisabetta Foradori and her team are doing important work here.” Important work, indeed. Today we’re featuring her newest dazzling single vineyard, single varietal bottle that is flat out terrific. Boasting an intoxicating freshness, silky, focused forest fruits and expansive floral aromatics, the 2016 Ampeleia is one of favorite new Italian reds for 2019.
2016 Ampeleia Alicante
“I have a soft spot for Alicante. This is fine and polished with bright acidity and a clean and beautiful finish. It's alll about drinkability here. Drink now. Made from biodynamic grapes.” 91 Points, James Suckling
More About the Wine
Ampeleia is based in Maremma, a secluded narrow coastal strip in Western Tuscany. While the region has plenty of interesting, artisanal projects going on, outside of Rome’s influential enoteches, the appellation has largely been ignored by the rest of the world. But that is changing. It is revealing that out of any appellation in Italy for Ms. Foradori to select, she chose Maremma. With its cool coastal influence from the Tyrrhenian Sea and a vast array of singular sloping micro-climates, Ms. Foradori and her two partners embarked on an extensive biodynamic (and expensive) commitment in understanding this unique terroir.
The 2016 Alicante is the newest discovery of that journey and it is impressive. Sourced from a single vineyard named "Vigna della Pieve", Ms. Foradori recognized that the site’s sandy soils rich in pebbles was a perfect fit for Alicante Nero, a common Mediterranean variety. While you’ve probably never heard the name of the varietal before in Italian, you likely will recognize it as Grenache in France, Cannonau in the neighboring island of Sardinia and as Garnacha in Spain. Ampeleia’s expression transmits the same notes on why we dearly love this grape so much: the silky body, the perfumed aromatics, but in credit with Ms. Foradori’s exceptional talent and skill as a winemaker, Ampeleia’s expression offers us a captivating unique portrait of what this grape can do on the Italian coastline. Hint: It performs astonishingly well.