Le Colture, Prosecco

Veronica Ruggeri presented a tasting of three wines from the portfolio of her family company. Two generations are involved in “a very close family and business,” says Veronica. She is pictured left of photograph, with her brother Alberto and sister Silvia. Silvia’s husband leads the winemaking team.

All vineyards lie within the prime Prosecco zone between Conegliano and Valdobbiadene. Holdings have been expanded from 16 to 40 hectares, including one hectare of the top Cru of Valdobbiadene, called Cartizze. That equates to a production of just under 800,000 bottles per year. Somewhat unusually for a Prosecco house, all of that comes from their own estate vineyards.

As well as two cuvées of Prosecco, the tasting included a ‘col fondo’ wine. Veronica says that most producers, small and large, now have a col fondo in their portfolio. It’s an historic method where sparkling wines are bottled without being disgorged, so are cloudy and generally dry. “Col fondo is very popular for drinking during dinner – it was once a ‘peasant wine’ but today’s version is much more refined,” she says. Of course, it also taps into the ‘Pet Nat’ zeitgeist of natural, minimal intervention winemaking.

The wines

(2022) A brand new product, not yet in the UK at time of review, this is a semi-sparkling wine closed with a crown cap and sold undisgorged (and therefore lightly cloudy) in the col fondo or 'pet nat' style. It pours a pale, cloudy gold but immediately has interest with aromas of apricot and yeast, some fine pear and apple too, suggesting a dry character. It is indeed dry in the mouth, the gentle effervesence adding to the volume on the palate, that yeasty, slightly wheat-beer character set against very nice fruit and balanced acidity. Most enjoyable. Should sell for around the same price as the Fagher (£16 at time of review).
(2021) A lovely wine this, very elegant and refined, discrete and delicately floral aromas, a touch of icing sugar and meringue. The palate is pin sharp, not too much fruitiness means a more gastronomic, though still featherlight style. A very nice Prosecco this with purity and subtlety.
(2022) Again 100% Glera, this comes from the calcium-rich soils of the hill of Cartizze. It has a longer second fermentation than the Fagher cuvee, and is Dry, meaning it has at least 18g/l of residual sugar and noticeable sweetness. There is great delicacy here, a little icing sugar and bon-bon note, a gentle biscuity character in the background. Extremely elegant and almost weightless on the palate, the featherlight quality might at first seem too delicate, but there is persistence, balance between sweetness and acidity, in a very charming, high quality Prosecco.

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