2019-C Cascina Val del Prete Arneis, Piedmont, Italy (750ml)
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A Monthly Wine Club Selection
This wine is straw yellow in color with a hint of pale green. It has a delicate tropical nose with notes of honeydew melon. The palate shows flavors of white peach and key lime with a touch of bitter almond and a lingering finish.
Luèt, meaning “small wolf” in the Piemontese dialect, is made of Arneis, a historical grape from the Roero district. After harvest, the grapes saw a 3-day maceration on the lees and were fermented in stainless steel tanks. The wine rested on the yeasts for 3 months, was racked and settled for an additional month in tank, and then spent 3 more months in the bottle before being released.
Val del Prete means "Valley of the Priest" after the exiled Bishop of Asti who lived in the area in 1850 amongst the rolling hills of Roero in the northwestern edge of the province of Cuneo near Alba. Bartolomeo Roagna and his wife, Carolina, purchased their 'Cascina' or farmhouse and surrounding farm in 1977. Unlike their contemporaries who left the country in search of higher paying jobs in the city, the Roagnas preferred to stay on the land they were so passionate about. They also saw its great potential for growing wine grapes and proceeded to replace some of the wheat fields and fruit trees with grape vines. The total vineyard area has increased over the years to 13 hectares planted to Nebbiolo, Barbera and Arneis. They form a natural amphitheater that reaches up to 850 feet above sea level. Contrary to Roero's typically sandy soils, Val del Prete also has a fair amount of clay and marl, which is more commonly found across the river in Barbaresco. The Roagna's son, Mario, has taken over the farming, which is certified organic and biodynamic, and has been lauded as one of the key winemakers in Roero leading the drive toward higher quality wines approaching the level of its more famous neighbors.