ARCANGELI ROMULUS NEBBIOLO
Why Nebbiolo? Sandro Arcangeli as head of the family is a first generation Italian, hence the desire to make at least one wine with an Italian heritage.
Sandro’s family hails from Rome and thus the name Romulus, who is regarded as the father of the Italian capital city. Of course, it was hard to source the vineyard given that there is in total of maybe no more than 30 hectares of this grape planted in South Africa.
The wine was made from a 10 year old vineyard in the loam and sandy soils of Rawsonville into a softer and more feminine style akin to Barbaresco. The latter is mentioned purely to indicate style, as this wine is a Cape expression of nebbiolo and not an attempt to chase Barbaresco or Barolo. The tannins at this tender age are already silky with firm acidity and brimming with rose petal, stewed apricots, frangipane and subtle liquorice. The body is medium to light as it befits a luminous and elegant style wine, yet it has a firm and pronounced finish.
Planted in the rich loam and sandy soils of the Breede River valley, the vineyards yield eight tonnes per hectare from its trellised and irrigated vines.
The grapes were picked deliberately early at 23.5 ° Balling into small crates. In the cellar, the whole clusters were crushed slightly through a peristaltic mash pump into four used 500 litre barrels (with open tops). Spontaneous fermentation was allowed with no additions. During fermentation morning punch-downs were done by eager legs. After fermentation the barrel heads were sealed while the wine was macerated for about three weeks thereafter.
At best to start drinking after two years of vinification and should last 10 years.