Marco Casolanetti is the fifth generation of his family to live and tend to their 17 hectares of land in the heart of Piceno, very far south along the coast of Marche. And he is the first generation to focus the property on their old Montepulciano and Bordo (the local Grenache) grape vines, as he began to plant more vineyards, replacing old fields of grain that the family always made orzo pasta from, a local favorite. Marco is a visionary; a man with an engineer's brain and a winemaker's passion. As were the generations that preceded him, he is a natural in the winery and in the fields. In remarkably high densities (one vineyard has 400,000 plants per hectare!) his vines produce very low yields per plant; giving incredible focus and purity to the grapes on this alluvial soil. A combination of this well draining earth and air that is full of seaspray and odium (its elevation is only 1.8m) makes the fruit disease-resistant, healthy, and concentrated. In the cellar, only the best (untreated) Grenier new French oak is used, no sulfites until bottling, and ample time in bottle before release, creating some of the most exciting and elegant wines to come from the Marche.
oasi degli angeli 'kurni'
The Kurni primarily comes from a 95-year-old plot of Montepulciano that the Casolanetti family has farmed for generations. Densely planted and high above the nearby sea, these natural and healthy vines produce incredibly intense and complex fruit. As Marco uses no additions whatsoever during the vinification of his wines (he only uses small bits of sulfites just before bottling), his practices are peculiar yet remarkable. The old-vine must starts natural fermentation in large, 2,500 and 3,000L Grenier oak (from the same cooper as DRC), while the small amounts of younger vine fruit go into stainless steel with extra time on the skins. All is then put into brand new French barrique to undergo the long and slow malolactic fermentation (often lasting well into the summer after harvest), and after 11 months, the first and only racking takes place. The wine is moved by gravity into, yet again, brand new French barrique. This protects the reductive Montepulciano from experiencing this fate, and continues to age for another 11 months before bottling. The result is nothing short of spectacular, focused, intense, aromatic, and elegant. A wine to last in the cellar for decades.