Alpha Zeta was started in 1999 when Liberty Wines set out to produce a range of modern, fruit-driven wines from the hills outside Verona. Working with leading New Zealand winemaker, Matt Thomson, our aim was to work with growers (rather than buy bulk wine, which is standard among most wines from Verona at this price) to obtain ripe grapes (by reducing yields and picking later) and then, using Matt's expertise, preserve these flavours in the finished wines. The result is a realisation of the potential inherent in Veronese viniculture.
The Terrapieno vineyard is situated in the Valpantena Valley in eastern Valpolicella. Cool currents blow down the valley from the foothills of the Dolomites, enabling the grapes to ripen slowly. Poor, well drained soils, a great aspect and excellent vineyard management produce fruit that is incredibly intense in flavour.
Bud burst was delayed by seven to eight days compared to the 2017 vintage, but rainfall and high temperatures in the following weeks brought forward flowering. On the whole, the grapes developed well and in perfect condition. Yields were slightly higher than in 2017.
The grapes were hand harvested, de-stemmed, crushed and chilled to 10°C on the way to the press to minimise the extraction of skin phenolics. The juice was chilled immediately and naturally settled. Fermentation took place at low temperatures of 12-14°C in order to retain fruit flavours. The cool and gentle handling ensured that there was no need for harsh fining, preserving the wine's delicate aromas.
This is a single vineyard Pinot Grigio with great intensity and balance. It has lifted aromas of pear and bread crust, classic for Pinot Grigio from this region. The nose gives way to lovely weight and a silky texture on the palate, with hints of delicate spice and biscuits. The wine finishes dry with a zesty acidity to maintain freshness and an impressive length.
BY THE GLASS TROPHY - Sommelier Wine Awards 2019
100% Pinot Grigio/Pinot Gris