Secco Splendido Metodo Ancestrale 2019
Metodo Ancestrale is the pre-industrial method of sparkling wine, finishing their primary fermentation in bottle. We nurture the ferment with air, warmth and zero sulphur so this Moscato Bianco is breathlessly fragrant as the yeast create natural effervescence. The crown seal is the best seal for zero sulphur wine (we think).
LOOKS LIKE... Fine pale gold with great clarity and persistent bead
SMELLS LIKE... Delicate wafts of white flowers & wisteria. A heady mixture of orange, lemon and peach blossom. Perhaps a hint of amaretti biscuit beating from the back of the palate.
DRINK WITH... Après tennis and work with piadina or pistachio nuts
CELLAR UNTIL... Drink within twelve months to appreciate the musky notes
Ancestrale method completes final 25 grams of grape sugar fermentation in bottle to capture effervescence. Thus the grapes can be harvested at full ripeness, in this case, 12.5 baumé. There are no sulphur additions and we grossly oxidise the juice at the start because this redox state fully evolves the Moscato aroma and positively favours healthy active budding yeast and malolactic bacteria populations. The malolactic fermentation inevitably proceeds uninhibited by sulphur, wrestling with the yeast in bottle over the meagre nutrition available in the final post bottling fermentation weeks.
Frightening times for winemakers with little scientific evidence of activity (no microscope), only tasting bottles of wine that are increasingly explosive, yet dry to taste and temporarily yoghurty as with bacteria fleet move through. Secco Splendido is riddled in preparation for disgorging the lees. The wine is topped with itself, there is no liqueur added as we enjoy the chalky sensation of unadulterated young Moscato. We disgorge in 40 dozen lots as required, its a few hours work in the morning with time to label in the afternoon.
Moscato’s expressive aroma arrives unabashed on first pour. The musky character, that first inspired the variety’s name, lends weight to delightful fruit-sweet flavours of apricot jam and fresh grapes. Metodo Ancestrale wakes the palate with a tingle of acidity and gentle effervescence thanks to the ‘farmhouse’ style. Youthful, fresh, and bound to put a spring in your step.
100 Hunts Vineyard in Merricks North, grows Moscato Bianco especially for us. Owner operator vigneron is the highly skilled Joe Vaughan. Each Moscato bunch becomes golden and heavy as it ripens, straining the vine’s rescources, requiring great technical skill and experience to pull off. Joe uses two canes per vine, persistent shoot and fruit placement and, when necessary, removal keep the crop free of disease. Joe applies a generous amount of post-harvest compost and mulch undervine as well as silica sprays in the season to feed these unusually hungry vines. The vines are machine harvested before dawn so they are cool and ready for pressing at our winery only minutes away. Harvest of 8 tons on March 13th 2019.
All Moscato varieties are interesting and challenging to grow and to make. The aromatics of Moscato are heightened with both sparkling format and sweetness. We decided against sweetness because we wanted to showcase the interesting texture of Moscato, in this case elevated by the fine bead