Vintages - 2009 for Valle Reale
For us and for all of Abruzzo, the year 2009 is summed up in this one day: the day the earthquake devastated L'Aquila, which is only 50 kilometres from Valle Reale. It was a hard and difficult year for the entire territory.
In terms of our vineyards, in Popoli the year opened with a promising spring with high maximum temperatures from the month of May onwards until early October. The vineyards did not suffer from drought as water was always in abundant supply, so subsequently the ripening was harmonic. In 2009, 1082 mm of water fell over the course of 158 days: an important statistic for a poor and draining soil like that of the San Calisto cru, for example, where few, abundant rainfalls are never a solution for a year of drought. An unusual increase in the maximum daily temperature, which occurred during the first two weeks of November, obliged us to start the grape harvest on November 20th. The harvest was good in terms of both quantity and quality, thanks to the excellent ripening of the grapes.
In Capestrano, this was the first year that high average and maximum temperatures were recorded beginning in the early weeks of spring. Their impact was somewhat mitigated by frequent rainfalls that maintained the minimums low during the months of May and June. Following an extremely hot July and August, September was quite balanced with a precocious ripening of the clusters, to the point that we were able to start the harvest on September 15th.
This was the year of the first harvest of the Montepulciano d’Abruzzo grapes of the Sant’Eusanio Vineyard cru, that underwent the spontaneous fermentation process.