From: Tuscany, Italy
Blend: 50% Trebbiano, 50% Malvasia del Chianti
Taste: The tasting notes of this elixir are a symphony of flavors and aromas, presenting a dazzling array of candy apricot, figs jam, caramel, white chocolate, vanilla, almond, honey, and dried orange. Its ethereal bouquet is rich with undertones of raisins and honey, delivering a warm, velvety, and delicately sweet taste, reflecting the richness and diversity of the Tuscan soil and climate.
Pairing: This lighter Vin Santo is recommended with traditional Tuscan cookies, “cantuccini,” and other regional cakes, elevating the flavors of each bite with its sweet and complex profile. While the dessert options are very wide-ranging in all regions of Italy, we love the idea of pairing this with one of Tuscany’s quintessential desserts, Panforte Siena. Don’t confuse this for another of Italy’s most famous confections - the Panatone. While the ingredients may look similar, Panforte Siena is dense, firm, smooth, and rich, unlike Panatone's breadier heft, reminiscent of a fruit loaf rather than Panaforte’s confectionary consistency.
Traditional Siena Fruitcake (Panforte)
By Florence Fabricant
About: Azienda Uggiano's journey began in the early seventies, conceived by a group of Bergamo businessmen passionate about the spirit of Tuscan wines. The vision was fostered by a connoisseur of the French wine school, Giuseppe Losapio. Under his tutelage, the vineyard soon found its home in San Vincenzo a Torri, a picturesque area among the Tuscan architectural wonders, from monasteries to rustic country villas. It is here that the vineyards yield wines of unmatched excellence under the meticulous care of a passionate team.
The foundations of Azienda Uggiano were strengthened when three adept partners, harboring a shared zeal for Uggiano traditions, joined the venture, marking a new era. This confluence of passionate minds brought together individuals like Fabio Martelli, overseeing administration and finance, who, with his extensive background in the food and crafts sectors, has been an integral part of Uggiano since 1992.
Daniele Prosperi, a connoisseur of viticulture and oenology, infuses his scholarly insights into his role as Oenologist and Production Manager. His commitment to maintaining the company's foundational values while pioneering innovative approaches has been exemplary since he became part of Uggiano in 2003.
Complementing them is Giacomo Fossati, the linchpin managing Export & Sales. His role is steeped in a profound understanding of the dynamic demands of clients, a testament to his multidisciplinary background in languages and his personal affinity for wines since joining in 2001.
This wine. The journey of this wine begins in September, with the collection of grapes by hand, a process respectful of each delicate vine. The grapes are then placed in wooden baskets weighing 13 to 15 kilos. Following this, they are transported to the “Appassitoio,” a historic granary building reimagined as a grape drying room, where they are arranged on racks and suspended on steel wires.
In this unique space, the grapes undergo a drying process that is watched with meticulous attention, ensuring the prevention of mold and diseases. This process is essential, allowing the grapes to preserve their signature flavors and concentrate their sugars, which can reach a stunning 300 to 400 grams per liter in some years.
The pressing of the grapes occurs in March, conducted pneumatically alongside their stalks, yielding juice quantities no higher than 15% of the total weight of the grapes. This precious nectar is then transferred to casks of varying sizes, crafted from five different kinds of wood, including acacia, cherry, mulberry, chestnut, and oak, each imparting its unique flavor profile to the evolving wine.
The “Vinsantaia,” where the Vin Santo is stored, is strategically located above the cellar and beneath the roof, where it can embrace the temperature variations essential to its unique development. Especially after the pressing, the temperatures, reaching up to 122°F in July and August, catalyze the work of yeasts, playing a crucial role in the fermentation process.
After an eight to ten-year journey, encapsulating intricate processes and patient anticipation, the barrels are opened, usually during the Easter week, marking the end of the waning moon, revealing the divine nectar within.
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