16 Feb A heritage of fundamental grapes – article on golagioconda.it
Mannucci Droandi is a small company in the Valdarno Aretino. Small, but important. For years, thanks to the research program carried out with the CRA (Council for Research and Experimentation in Agriculture), they have enhanced with skill and passion, rare ancient vines come of which are in the process of disappearing.
It ‘s a brave attempt to challenge the impoverishment of the varietal heritage and indigenous biotypes of the area which holds a wealth of smaller historical grapes critical to maintaining the identity of a territory all of which characterizes the wines from a sensory point of view.
If we consider that in Tuscany, the Sangiovese grape is cultivated for about 60% of it’s productive output and to produce the supertuscan, the territory is now dominated by Merlot and Cabernet grapes. In this sense, it is understood that the work which Mannucci Droandi head towards, in the words of De André, is in an ‘obstinate and contrary direction.’
We cite three cases: The Barsaglina, with excellent phenolic capacity, and Foglia Tonda, the ancient Chianti origin, with grape bunches and very similar to the Sangiovese, and, again Pugnitello with poor performance and yet great in quality.
The Barsaglina originates in the province of Massa Carrara. It’s behavior is decisively influenced by the environment and temperatures. It gives a ruby colored wine with vegetable scents on the nose and enveloping taste. Interesting to use, for its color intensity and the feeling of freshness, blended with Sangiovese.
More robust and generous and pleasant olfactory wine is that obtained from Foglia Tonda, capable of aging well. Foglia Tonda there are traces in Arceno area to the middle of ‘900 and, backwards, at the Castle of Brolio Barone Ricasoli 800.
Pugnitello has, however, the origins of Grosseto. It is called this probably for the shape of the bunch, like a clenched fist. The wine is almost purple in color, with notes of cherry, good structure and soft tannins. Suitable to be vinified alone, it holds very well over the years.
Of these, and other vines find news in the National Register of Vine Varieties. To sample the bottles instead you should contact Mannucci Droandi or go directly to the store of the farm. You will be welcome.