Among many excellent Italian red wines, the Rosso Conero variety is certainly one of the most deserving of being discovered and appreciated. They are made from Montepulciano grapes, and considered to be the most delicious and important red wines of the Marche region, made in two different denominations: Rosso Conero DOC (Denomination of Controlled Origin) and the Conero Riserva DOCG (Denomination of Controlled and Guaranteed Origin). If you have already read the article in the TWR Lands section you already know what I mean.
If you haven’t, now would be a good time for a refresher on the Conero lands. In general, the Rosso Conero DOC wines are easier to approach, light, and recommended for drinking (if you prefer) with seafood; the Conero Riserva DOCG have a more austere look, important structure and age quite well.
Among the many excellent wines, there is a Conero Reserve which stands out: the Sassi Neri (Black Rocks) vintage 2013 Fattoria Le Terrazze. The company, owned by Antonio Terni and his wife Georgina, is a small oasis of greenery and happiness, located south of the promontory of Conero and the city of Ancona, the capital of the Marche (the region of central Italy facing the Adriatic Sea). The Conero area is famous for the Montepulciano grape production, from which Rosso Conero is derived.
The history of Le Terrazze begins on the hills of Numana in 1882, year of construction of the winery. Since the late nineteenth century the Terni family has been harvesting and making wine from Montepulciano grapes, which have their natural habitat in the area. The vineyards are located on a slight hill just over a kilometer from the sea, which offers a breath-taking view of the surrounding scenery.
Today, Antonio and Georgina Terni, followed masterfully by Valdôtain oenologist Federico Curtaz (which in the past has worked with Gaja and on Mount Etna), produce about 90,000 bottles from vineyards that stretch for about sixteen hectares.
The vintage currently on the market is Sassi Neri 2013, but what is it like? Ruby red in color, it initially discloses clean and fresh aromas of cherry, blackberry and pomegranate, then fresh flowers and undergrowth, vanilla and a slight trail of dark chocolate. But what is striking is the freshness of the fruit. In the mouth it is intense, tasty, soft, with perfect tannins, fresh and balanced. It stands out because of the pleasantness of the drink, agile and persistent. A red that never disappoints!
What’s more, I have also tasted an extraordinary Sassi Neri 2002 vintage (a de facto reserve, but missing the appropriate label) at a “vertical” which took place in the company: it presents aromas of blackberry jam juice, notes of tobacco, dark chocolate, all in small colors as part of a very articulate bouquet. The taste is fine, soft as a feather, dynamic in its fine tannins, with a persuasive final note of spices and incense. A long-lived, balanced red wine.
Some technical details: The fermentation takes place in stainless steel tanks with prolonged maceration. After malolactic fermentation, the wine is aged in French oak barrels for 18 months, then aged for a period of 12 months in the bottle before being released on the market.
Retail price: € 24 – $ 28; My rating: 89/100