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Fossa Mala Cabernet Sauvignon DOC
Friuli Grave 2014
Area of Origin: DOC Friuli Grave – Friuli V. Giulia
Vine: Cabernet Sauvignon
Wine Type: Still
Breeding System: Guyot
The grapes, harvested in the first week of October, are left to ferment in stainless steel tanks for about two weeks, during which time rémontage and delestage operations are carried out to extract colour and tannins from the skins. Following this step, and having reached the optimal level of alcohol, the wine is separated from the skins and left to mature in steel tanks (70%) and barrels (30%), where it begins to clarify by natural settling. During this time, the wine reaches its microbiological equilibrium and our only concern is to carry out decanting to separate the deposits formed on the bottom of the tank. The Cabernet Sauvignon is blended and bottled in the late autumn following the harvest, with additional aging in the bottle for three months. Full garnet red colour. Intense bouquet, typical, with hints of berry and balsamic notes. In the mouth it corresponds with the notes experienced by the nose, expressing a correct structure, elegance and softness.
Deep ruby red color. Intense, vinous bouquet. Garnet red color. Intense aroma, typical with hints of berries and balsamic notes. In the mouth it has correspondence with the notes perceived on the nose, expressing a correct structure, elegance and softness..
Ideal with grilled meat, game and mature cheeses.
In the heart of the Friuli vineyards, the Villa Fossa Mala estate is owned by the Roncadin family.
The point of reference for their family-run company, after a childhood spent playing on the estate, then abandoned and steeped in fascination, this is where Edoardo's dreams took concrete shape.
Here they experiment with the flavours of the local cuisine, accompanied by their own wines.
Fiume Veneto, 12 May 2003: this was the start of the Fossa Mala project, a young idea in an ancient land and the only one of its kind in the Grave del Friuli DOC area.
Unlike other parts of the Grave area, this land with a special calling is a "fat" land, rich with the silt and clay deposited down the millennia by the floods of the rivers typical of the area.
From the initial six hectares, it soon grew to the current size of 36 hectares:
constant growth thanks to the Roncadin family's determination to produce important and unique wines, capable of eliciting strong emotions.
The setting that encompasses and represents this passion is as unique as the intended results: an ancient villa on the Fiume Veneto plain, keeping vigil over the surrounding vineyards, over man’s labour and over the gentle alternating cycle of the seasons which together have made Fossa Mala a great wine.
The Terre Grasse
Bassi della Meduna
the "Terre Grasse" of Fiume Veneto
The land to the east of the Meduna river which furrows the Friuli plain between the Alps and the Adriatic Sea is lower than on the west bank and is therefore known as the "Bassi della Meduna" or Meduna Lowlands.
For millennia, it has received the precious nourishment of the seasonal floods, making it rich in silt and clay.
The Friuli plain extends along the foot of the Alps, to the south of the morainic amphitheatre. Protected by the mountains to the north, the plain quickly reaches the Adriatic coast where it enjoys an ideal microclimate.
Formed in the Quaternary era due to the combined action of first glaciers and then rivers, almost everywhere it is distinguished by massive deposits of gravel and stones known as “Magredi” (meagre lands) or Grave. At Fiume Veneto on the other hand, the torrential nature of the Grave rivers changes almost at once to a calm slowness, allowing the creation of a plain rich in silt and clay, a precious substance which represents the basis of our project.
Furrowed by the rivers Meduna, Noncello and Fiume together with numerous other streams testifying to the area's richness in water, we have been entrusted with these lands with their potential for great things.
Densely-planted and low-lying, the Fossa Mala vineyard has a planting density of 7,850 vines per hectare on moderately weak rootstock chosen from both native and international varieties through clonal and massal selections.
The first 30 hectares of land in front of the villa were planted in the spring of 2003. In 2008, a further seven hectares were planted to the rear of the villa.
The vines are made up of American rootstock and European scions.
The result is clones obtained from specialised nurseries, chosen with the specific objective of making high quality wine.
The rootstock vines are all weak given the terrain rich in silt and clay. In a high density planting pattern, production is thus self-regulating (canopy production is reduced and the plant tends to concentrate more on fruiting).
Both clonal selections based on well-defined genetic characteristics and massal selections were planted.
All the vineyards adopt the unilateral Guyot technique (a single folded cane with 6/8 fruiting buds).
Grass is left between the rows during the spring, while the soil is worked during the summer to avoid competition for water between grass and plant and prevent the terrain from cracking.
Alternate rows are sown in the autumn with species such as common vetch, garden pea and forage barley in order to improve the bearing capacity of the land which, being heavy, tends to compact. Green manure is applied as a natural fertilizer thanks to fixation of atmospheric nitrogen in the soil.
Fertilizing is very light and always applied after picking, ideally using specifically selected greenleaf fertilizers.
The excellent water retention properties of the soil avoid the need for deficit irrigation.
In rainy years, the marked convexing of the land conveys surface water into external channels which drain the water into the neighbouring ditches.
Friuli Grave Wine
Friuli Grave (or Grave del Friuli) is a DOC covering a large area of land in Friuli-Venezia Giulia, between the Alps and the Adriatic sea. The region's combination of soil, climate and situation make for excellent wines, and viticulture here dates back to Roman times. Friuli Grave's strongest reputation is for white wines made from Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Grigio and Friulano, all defined by their crisp nature and underlying finesse.
The area – made up of some 16,000 acres (6500ha) of vineyards – extends from the edge of the Colli Orientali del Friuli DOC in the east to Veneto in the west, covering the plains of several rivers, the most important of which is the Tagliamento. The Julian Alps are on the northern border of the Friuli Grave DOC, and a strip of smaller DOCs separate the southern border from the coast.
Friuli Grave – like its namesake Graves in Bordeaux – takes its name from the gravelly, alluvial soil that characterizes the zone. The stony, limestone-rich soil originated in the mountains and has been deposited across the plains over the years. The extensive stretch of stones beneath the vines reflects heat and light during the day to help the grapes ripen, as well as acting like a radiator during the night to maintain a constant and even mesoclimate. Drainage is also excellent, mitigating the effects of any heavy rainfall.
The Adriatic sea and the Julian Alps both have an influence on the climate here, especially depending on which is closer. In the northern part of the Friuli Grave viticultural zone, there is a cooler, rainier climate, while the south, closer to the coast, has a warmer, drier climate. The nearby Adriatic Sea tempers the heat of the plains, and the vineyards are also protected from the cold air currents coming from the north by the curve of the foothills of the Alps.
Friuli Grave has a particular affinity for white wines, which are given varietal intensity and aromatic complexity by the particular terroir here. A large range of both international and local grape varieties are covered in the DOC, and Pinot Grigio is king here. Some red wines are also made under the Friuli Grave DOC, mostly from the Bordeaux stalwarts Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, as well as from the local red gem Refosco dal Peduncolo Rosso.
Vigneti Di Famiglia
The style of the Villa Fossa Mala estate, formerly known as the Villa Bassi della Meduna, dates back to the 16th - 17th century.
Its typical enclosed courtyard structure symbolizes the villa civilization that brought beauty to the Veneto-Friuli countryside from around 1600.
The nucleus of the “aristocratic villa” is adorned by a majestic centuries’ old magnolia tree.
Other signs of the Villa’s rural past are the drinking fountain, the cobblestone paving near the old stables and the large arches on the first floor originally used as a hayloft.
Several sections of the ancient architectural structure reveal the pattern of alternating river stones and bricks, used in past centuries to construct the walls.
Katia Roncadin is the owner of Fossa Mala. This is her world, immersed in this hospitable natural environment and the history of an ancient land.
The family estate makes its living from cultivating the vineyards that go to make Fossa Mala wines great and which surround the Stables, Winery, Restaurant, Wine Shop and 15 agritourism rooms, almost as though shielding them from the chaos of modernity so that the Villa’s guests can enjoy the peace and quiet of this magical place in the heart of Friuli.
The winery is conceived according to modern criteria able to exploit the year's work in the vineyard to the full.
The materials which accompany the journey from must to wine are steel, with its functional neutrality, and wood, with its ancient and irreplaceable ability to perfect the mosaic.
Attention to the environment is the philosophy which inspires the Fossa Mala Winery which in 2011 invested in a powerful photovoltaic installation able to supply the majority of the energy required, producing an average of about 380,000 kWh per year.
Together with other certified renewable energy sources, Fossa Mala aims at eco-sustainable production.
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