In the southernmost part of Tuscany lies the charming medieval town of Capalbio in Maremma. When it comes to wine it is a relatively undiscovered area of Tuscany, an Italian region that has preserved its original charm and traditions. Tucked away in Maremma is a hidden treasure, Monteverro Winery.
Monteverro is a winery that is about passion, innovation and precision. Its unspoiled location enjoys close proximity to the ocean, which creates a unique microclimate. The vineyards experience fresh cool breezes, sunny days and perfectly cool nights, which are the optimal conditions for grape growing. In addition to the microclimate, the vines have ideal soil composition, multi-layered rocks and red clay soils that make the region one of the most mineral-rich in the world. Monteverro wines are elegant and refined, which is not an easy task with the warm climate and bold sun of Maremma.
Story of Monteverro Winery
Georg Weber had the vision to make the most extraordinary wine in the world. He was a young man, 27 years old at the time and had just finished business school. He had traveled the world over to understand winemaking and the wine industry. When he arrived in Tuscany, he had a very clear understanding of what he was looking for. He decided he wanted to make wine in Tuscany and by chance and curiosity, he came to Capalbio, which was quite unknown at the time in the wine industry.
In 2003, Georg purchased 50 hectares of land and then planted vineyards. Georg was drawn to Monteverro because it was right in front of the Tyrrhenian Sea and in the backdrop, there was Monte Argentario. He planted mainly Bordeaux varieties, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. He also planted two varieties that were not as common on the Tuscan coast, Syrah and Grenache.
Respect for the environment is a key element in the identity of Monteverro. Over the years Monteverro moved towards organic farming. It was a process in which they slowly took their time to understand the soils, manage the vineyards and appreciate the biodiversity of the land. Winemaker Matthieu Taunay says, “You need humility to work with nature.” This humility and deep understanding of the vineyards make the wines of Monteverro unique and expressive of the land.
Nature plays a leading role amongst the vineyards which are immersed in the natural biodiversity of the land, which includes olive trees, Mediterranean scrub, a multitude of bushes, shrubs, grasses, flowers, and herbs. They have been farming organically for a while now, and 2019 was the first vintage that they were certified organic with their red wines.
Matthieu Taunay – Winemaker & Oenolgist
Matthieu Taunay is the winemaker and oenologist at Monteverro Winery. Matthieu arrived at Monteverro with extensive experience in winemaking and vineyard management. Before Monteverro, he spent time in Burgundy, Champagne, New Zealand, India, Malta, South Africa, Chile, Argentina and Napa Valley.
I had the opportunity to have some exhilarating conversations and wine tasting with Matthieu. Matthieu said upon his arrival at Monteverro in 2008, he was thoroughly impressed at how well thought out the winery and cellar were designed. Georg had built a state of the art winery that was quite simple but very innovative and precise.
The cellar at Monteverro is designed to be eco-friendly, with the use of gravity to respect the grapes and using naturally cold temperatures; grapes are cooled down fast to ensure they are not oxidized. The cellar is very interesting, it is partially built into the hills to allow for natural cooling. They have lots of small tanks to bring the division in the vineyards into the cellar. They vinify the diversity of the vineyards separately and optimize them in the vinification of small lots, it is a simple idea, but a very well thought out process in this winery. Matthieu says the foresight Georg took in designing the winery makes the winemakers’ work easier.
Monteverro’s Powerhouse International Team
Georg Weber has assembled a powerhouse team. It is the people that make Monteverro wines so unique and distinguished. Four gentlemen come together from around the globe to determine the blend for the wines. Matthieu Taunay, Michel Rolland, Jean Hoefliger and agronomist, Simone Salamone. They taste all the wines together and create a blend that has synergy and a wine that defines the vintage while keeping the integrity of the vineyards.
Michel Roland, one of the worlds leading expert enologists has close ties to the winery. Michel brings his conviction and experience to Monteverro, as he was the one who encouraged Georg Weber to purchase the property at a time when Maremma was relatively obscure. Along with Michel Rolland, Jean Hoefliger also plays a role in the winemaking at Monterverro. Jean is an award-winning winemaker in Napa Valley producing 100 point wines and is known as one of the top five winemakers of the world. This dynamic team has the vision and expertise to create the best and most precise wines of the world from Maremma.
Vermentino Di Monteverro 2019
Vermentino Di Monteverro is everything that a great Vermentino should be. It is expressive, aromatic and has wonderful texture and acidity. The nose has aromas of lemon and lime. This Vermentino is fresh and has lip-smacking acidity. The wine is very expressive with a sense of place and a distinct minerality. There are notes of cypress, lemon, lime and grapefruit. Vermentino Di Monteverro has a beautiful long lingering finish with a hint of salinity.
Terra Di Monteverro 2014
Terra Di Monteverro is mainly Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc which make up 80% of the blend and the remaining is comprised of 15% Merlot and 5% Petit Verdot. There are notes of raspberries and blueberries in Terra di Monteverro, also fresh notes of eucalyptus, and integrated notes of cedar and tobacco envelope the palate. The wine coats the mouth with its silky texture. Terra Di Monteverro is more on the restrained side for Tuscany versus the typical blends that are big and bold. The wine is complex with great acidity and nice structure.
Tinata Monteverro 2015
Tinata Monteverro is dedicated to the Rhône varieties of Syrah and Grenache. The wine is a beautiful expression of these two grape varieties from southern Tuscany. The wine is wonderfully complex, layered and elegant. Tinata is expressive and lively on the nose with notes of lavender, rosemary and white pepper. The palate is soft, elegant and velvety with hints of raspberries, cherries, tobacco and white pepper. An ideal pairing with succulent grilled meats, spicy stews or aged cheeses. This is a really impressive wine full of potential(hide for a few years in the cellar) that every Syrah lover is sure to cherish.
** Photos Courtesy of Monteverro Winery **