The Essence of Le Mortelle
ICONIC WINE | Emanuele Milani
In the heart of the Tuscan Maremma, not far from Castiglion della Pescaia, the Antinori family estate Fattoria Le Mortelle lies nestled among the area’s natural wonders.
The estate’s name comes from a myrtle bush that’s typical of the Maremma coast: la Mortella. The property has been around every since 1863, and covers 270 hectares overall, 170 of which are vineyards for the production of high quality wine. There are also over 5 hectares of fruit orchards (peaches, plums, pears, blueberries, and apricots), over 10,000 cork oak trees, two lakes, and beautiful Oasi Diaccia Botrona.
The mainly clay and course soil, combined with the dry climate typical of the Tyrrhenian coast, make this the perfect place to cultivate Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and del Carménère, as well as white grape varieties such as Vermentino, Ansonica, and Viogner. Once ripened, grapes head to the estate’s cellar which was logically set up to harmonize with the surrounding natural environment: it is built almost completely underground, designed to process the grapes vertically, and includes a path open to the public so people can admire the steps from fermentation to refining and bottling the wine.
The dome is covered by volcanic rock and Mediterranean maquis, and covers three floors where the wine cycles take place. Production is carried out vertically with a “cascade” process from top to bottom, maximizing the efficiency of the best wine manufacturing technologies available. This unique technique is environmentally friendly and promoted by the Antinori family at Le Mortelle. Precision farming techniques, including targeted plant-health control, are used in the vineyards. The cellar’s unique architecture and natural components save energy thanks to lamellar structures for light, residual water purification treatments, and re-use of bio-waste and carbon dioxide produced during wine production. These insightful policies, combined with cutting edge production techniques, create the highest quality fine wines with unique and unmistakable flavors and aromas. Expressing the qualities of an extraordinarily beautiful land Le Mortelle produces wines that are all very different, yet united by a desire to express the land’s harmony and unique nature in various ways. Poggio alle Nane is a complex and elegantly tannic Maremma Toscana DOC.
It comes from combining the best grapes of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, and Carménère from the most exceptional area of the estate appropriately called Poggio delle Nane. Botrosecco is another intriguing Maremma Toscana DOC wine characterized by aromas of wild blackberry and caramel combined with hints of eucalyptus and mint, while light tannins lead to a soft finish with hints of chocolate and candied cherries. Finally, another Maremma Toscana DOC called Vivia is a mineral wine that is both vibrant and fresh with aftertastes of citron peel, obtained by combining Vermentino with Ansonica and Viognier. Its intense aroma is unmistakable, with hints of ripe white pulp fruits, pineapple, mango, and lemon flowers.