2009 was a late vintage of moderate yield. Bud-break on April 1, 2009, occurred later than it had for any of our fifteen previous vintages, caused in part by an extremely wet, cool and early spring. Although we had a heat spike in July with record-setting temperatures, the crop was largely unaffected due to the late stage of the “set” of the grapes and vigilant hydration of the vines. The rest of the summer was mild and that mild weather continued on into the early fall. Subsequently, harvest came later for the second year in a row. At the beginning of harvest, the weather cooperated nicely to allow the fruit to ripen fully. Although harvest finished later than usual, it allowed us to harvest the fruit at optimum flavor in a timely fashion.
(“Sah-Grahn-TEE-No”). Sagrantino is a dark-skinned, Italian varietal that originated in the Montefalco region of Umbria. It was commonly blended with Sangiovese to add color and tannin, but has gained acceptance recently as a stand-alone varietal. It produces a wine that is dark-ruby colored and can have powerful aromas and flavors.
The only Sagrantino planted in Napa Valley is the half acre planted at Benessere Vineyards.
This Sagrantino is garnet-red and offers aromas of rose petal, cedar and sage with intense blackberry flavors. Its bold structure of intense yet elegant tannin and the long finish usually take tasters by surprise.
The bold tannin and inky black fruitiness of the Sagrantino will pair nicely with heartier cuts of meat like cured antipasto, fennel sausage or roast pork. For a first dish, Pecorino cheese makes a great match. Pasta with truffles and cream sauce is great main dish complement.