2018 Torcolato, Maculan, Breganze DOC, Veneto, Italy
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Roving Sommelier is passionate about premium quality dessert wines. Fausto Maculan has been involved in the family wine business since 1970, when he graduated from oenology college. Over the years, he has enhanced the reputation of his eponymous vineyards and has also transformed positively the quality of their wines. Maculan first came on to my wine radar around 20 years ago (in 2001), while I was head sommelier at 3-star La Tante Claire restaurant in London. What’s more, Maculan’s Torcolato dessert wine has become a personal favourite. Fausto’s daughters, Angela and Maria Vittoria are now in charge at the winery.
Above all else, Maculan are winegrowers in the Breganze region. The quality of a great wine results from a combination of natural factors and human skills. In Breganze we have both the right environment as well as the necessary craftsmanship to produce excellent wines. Hillside vineyards, volcanic soils, the best expositions of the Breganze DOC, to have ripe and healthy grape to make excellent wines. Quality starts in the field.
For three generations the Maculan family has been selecting and vinifying the best grapes in Breganze, an enchanting village at the foot of the Asiago high plains, where the extremely mild climate favours the cultivation of vines and olive trees. The hills of Breganze provide an idea soil for grape varieties such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Chardonnay, Tocai and Vespaiolo and the production of very high-quality wines. Maculan also produces top-notch grappa and olive oil, too.
Although the estate produces four dessert wines – Dindarello, Torcolato, Acinobili, and Madoro – their exquisite Torcolato is by far my most favourite. For me, it’s a great sweet wine that simply deserves to be discovered. So much so, that I would always serve it by the glass when I worked in restaurants so that my customers had an opportunity to taste it. Torcolato has a brilliant golden colour and deliciously fragrant, sweet nose. On the palate it is intensely rich, sweet, and unctuous, but by no means cloying with a good natural sugar and acid balance. Torcolato’s concentration and unique flavour comes from drying the hand-picked, late-harvested Vespaiolo grapes for four months in special rooms dedicated to this method of production. The sweet wine then spends up to one year in old French oak barrels before it is bottled.
This liquid gold is best served chilled and in a convivial atmosphere. Perfect food pairings include fruit and custard-based desserts, pastries and puddings and strong blue cheeses.
Alcohol: 13.5% abv (37.5cl)
Grape variety: 100% Vespaiolo
Flavour Profile: Sweet, Rich, Unctuous, Intensely flavoured, Luscious, Tropical fruits, Vanilla, Honey, Good acidity.
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