“Nature should be observed, heard, [and] understood, not dominated.”
This tiny estate is the classic Italian fattoria, producing wine, raising farm animals for trade and home consumption and working the land to produce olives, fruits and vegetables. To this day, the Bea family raises and produces much of what they consume on a daily basis. Paolo Bea,
The senior member of the family, is the guiding force behind the production of this series of intense and idiosyncratic wines. Each bottle provides an indication of the total produced that year, and many feature a slight presence of sediment, demonstrating the wholly natural methods of production. Bea’s approach is firmly rooted not so much in the desire to translate provenance, but in the absolute necessity of articulating Montefalco’s terroir: “Nature should be observed, heard, [and] understood, not dominated.” Thus, his protocol is essentially noninterventionist—a means of realizing a genuine articulation of terroir uncompromised by practices that may insulate the wine from harm but ultimately produce a disingenuous wine. Paradoxically, this approach does not preclude the use of technical developments that lessen the burdens of labor-intensive vinification; rather, Bea is desirous of cultivating a balance between tradition and modernity.
Santa Chiara, Umbria Bianco
Zone of vines: Hills of Montefalco, about 400 m.s.l., location Pagliaro '88. Exposure: EAST-SOUTHWEST Type of soil: Clay Weather:: Dry years with some bizarre weather. Judgment of the season: 'AUTHORITATIVE' Care of vines: trained on wire, with 2,400 plants for hectare. Yield for hectare: 80 quintiliters Harvest data (late harvest): September 15th Grapes: 20% Grechetto,20% Malvasia, 20% Chardonnay, 20%Sauvignon, 20% Garganega Degress of Alcohol: 13,5%
Harvest: by hand, with transport of grapes in small steel containers. Fermentation: on the skins, stems removed the same day the grapes are harvested, no sulphur added. Fermentation process: 15 days with the skins. Aging process: 1 year in stainless steel Characteristics: soft, well balanced, viscous, aromas of fresh bread and dried figs. Recommended Pairings: antipasto, pasta, fish, roasted white meats
Total bottles for 2007 harvest: n°4.500 75,0 cl bottles
Santa Chiara, Umbria Bianco: A white wine produced from Grachetto, Malvasia , Chardonnay, Sauvignon and Garganega, in approximately equal proportions, planted in the “Pagliaro” vineyard, a site with alternating layers of gravel and clay at 1300 feet above sea level with both east and southwest facing parcels.
After crushing, the juice spends at least two weeks macerating on its lees; sulfur is never added. Fermentation occurs in small stainless steel vats at low temperatures. Two rackings are done early in the fermentation process to remove the heavy deposits and a third is done after three weeks. This wine is then left on the fine lees in stainless steel for one year before being bottled. Approximately 4500 bottles of wine are produced annually.
arboreus, Umbria Bianco
Zone of vines:Low Hills between Trevi and Montefalco, about 200 m.s.l., Exposure: EAST-SOUTHWEST Type of soil: clay alternating with layers of gravel Weather:: Very balanced season Judgment of the season: "GOOD" Care of vines: trained on wire, with 2,400 plants for hectare. Yield for hectare: 80 quintiliters Harvest data (late harvest): second half of October Grapes: 100% Trebbiano Spoletino Degress of Alcohol: 13,5% Harvest: by hand, with transport of grapes in small steel containers. Fermentation: on the skins, stems removed the same day the grapes are harvested, no sulphur added. Fermentation process: 21 days with the skins. Aging process:2 years in stainless steel of which 232 days with the dregs. Characteristics: hints of very ripe fruit (apricot), dried flowers and honey. Recommended Pairings: pasta dishes, grilled fish, vegetables, fresh fruit Total bottles for 2006 harvest: n°3.300 75,0 cl bottles
Arboreus, Umbria Bianco Arboreus: is made from a Trebbiano clone known as Trebbiano Spoletino which is trained so that the fruit hangs high above the ground. The vineyards are planted in the low hills between Trevi and Montefalco at an elevation of 650 to 700 feet with a range of parcels facing both to the east and to the southwest. The soil is essentially clay and gravel. Harvest generally occurs during the first two weeks of October. The wine is left in contact with the skins for up to three weeks or more and is then aged in stainless steel tanks for at least two years prior to bottling. Sulfur is never added. Annual production is in the range of 3000 bottles.