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Spanna Cuvee Bernardo Vallana

by Vallana Wines 2019

93POINTS

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$42.99

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Producer : Vallana Wines

Region : Italy (Italy), Piedmont (Italy)

Bottle Per Case : 6 x 750 ml

Food Pairing : Cured Meat, Red Meat, Veal roasted

Tasting Notes

This wine is the result of the work and the passion of the youngest generation of Vallanas. However, it is also the fruit of an age-long family tradition, perfectly embodied in the 20th century by Bernardo Vallana. The structure of the cellars on three layers, the size and the type of the fermentation tanks, the space for barrels and long-ageing bottles, most of the equipment the winery is still using today… all of this was designed or chosen by Bernardo Vallana. Most importantly, he left them with wines of incredible finesse and structure that are the greatest inspiration for their work and set the style of the winery.

"The 2019 Colline Novaresi Spanna Cuvée Bernardo Vallana is gorgeous. It presents a bit more mid-palate sweetness and generosity than many of these wines, which only adds to its considerable appeal. Sweet red cherry, kirsch, rose petal, cinnamon and blood orange build nicely in the glass, leading to a finish marked by lovely delineation and class"

93 Points - Antonio Galloni, Vinous Media, February 2024

Specs

Bottles Per Case 6 Pack
Point Score 93
Cellaring Drink Now or Cellar
Sweetness XD - Extra Dry See Sweetness Chart
Bottle Size 750 ml
Producer Vallana Wines
Region Italy (Italy), Piedmont (Italy)
Alcohol 13% alc./vol.
Style Warm and spicy reds
Vintage 2019
Farming Method Sustainable
Grapes 100% Nebbiolo
Food Pairing Cured Meat, Red Meat, Veal roasted
Descriptors Earthy, Fruity, Mineral
Wine Type Red
Wood Presence Oaked
Body Medium
Price of Case $257.94

The Producer

Vallana Wines

In Alto Piemonte viticulture was introduced in the II century BC, and the Vallana tradition in the wine business is lost in time. However, the first available news date back to 1787. In those days, the Canon Gaetano Perrucconi, was appointed butler of the Diocese by the Bishop of Novara. The priest devoted the family property of Montalbano (in the town of Boca) to the production of the best 'Spanna' in order to match the quality needs of the highly demanding Bishop’s see. At his death (1859), the vineyards were taken over by his young nephew-in-law Bernardo Vallana 'the Old'. In those days viticulture was very common: virtually everybody had a vineyard and produced home-made wine for the family. Wine was a very tough market, with a huge competition, and only very few of the best producers managed to make a living only from selling wine. After the opening of the Simplon Railway Tunnel (1905) Bernardo and his son Antonio were the first to exploit the train to export Spanna to Switzerland and Germany.

Bernardo Vallana had an infinite love for good wine. It did not matter weather he was making the affordable table wine for the local working class, or his long aging, world class 'Spanna': Bernardo accepted no compromise when it came to quality. Today, even after decades of aging, his wines are still incredible. A real pioneer, with a mixture of passion and genius he developed his own winemaking techniques in the endless search of the perfect wine: no matter how good a wine was, the next one had to be better. In his years Bernardo Vallana created legendary crus and cuvées of Spanna such as Cinque Castelli, Campi Raudii, Riserva Catuli Ara, Montalbano, Traversagna and more. Bernardo’s passion for wine was supported by his wife Marina who always had the final word when it came to bottling a batch of wine, and he transmitted it to his daughter, Giuseppina, skilled artist and good winemaker.

In 1980 Giuseppina Vallana married an English teacher, Guy Fogarty. Guy was trained a winemaker by Bernardo Vallana himself, during his last years. The meeting of a Alto-Piedmontese Italian woman with a passion for art and wine, with an English gentleman with a broad international experience produced the most elegant wines, that are still appreciated all over the world. The two faced the task of bringing viticulture and wine making into a new world of bureaucracy and regulations. As a result, some of the “old” cuvées lost or changed their name as the new denominations appeared: 'Colline Novaresi Spanna DOC', 'Boca DOC' and 'Gattinara DOCG'. In the 80‘s and 90‘s the winery won several international prizes, reaching the 45th place in the top 100 wines of the world of the Wine Spectator in 1989. The couple’s last vintage is a superb 1996, produced just before Guy passed away, Giuseppina, kept running the business, with some help from her mother her children. Nonetheless, the family still managed to yield wonderful vintages. However the market situation combined with the family’s conditions forced Vallana to retire from some of the traditional markets.

The estate is currently run by Giuseppina Vallana, together with her children: Francis, a trained enologist with a Ph.D viticulture, Marina, who holds a degree in Philosophy, is a qualified sommelier and is now attending London’s Wine and Spirit Education Trust’s courses and Miriam, B.A. in Russian and German and is currently completing her education. Highly inspired by the legacy of their ancestor, the Vallana-Fogarty face the task to bring the family tradition the next step further.

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