Wine Advocate 93+
Now a blend of equal parts Sangiovese, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon, the 2015 Al Passo is a bold, beautiful and fully ripe red wine that is both exuberant and immediate. Those rich fruit flavors burst from the glass in this sunny vintage, and you are treated to a seamless sequence of black cherry, blackberry and spice aromas. Subtle notes of tar and crushed stone create a delicate frame around that luscious fruit. This is a mid-weight wine to drink straight out of the gate. Some 91,000 bottles were made.
James Suckling 93
"A decadent nose with plum compote, vanilla, mocha and dark chocolate. Full body, ripe yet structured tannins and a grainy finish"
Wine Spectator 91
"A gorgeous expression of black cherry, plum and spice notes, balanced by bright acidity and firm, integrated tannins. This should develop nicely over the next decade. Sangiovese, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon."
A Blend of Sangiovese, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon (Organic)
Pierluigi and his team have succeeded in developing this modernly fruity Sangiovese in addition to maintaining its noteworthy structured varietal character. The 12 hectares of Sangiovese are planted at 7,400 plants per ha, growing a select few bunches per plant. All grapes in this blend are hand-selected and destemmed before vinifying. 50 of the wine is fermented in oak fermenters, 50 in stainless steel tanks. The wine undergoes malolactic and ages for 1 year, a portion in barrique but the majority is in 500 liter tonneaux. The name of this wine comes from the passo found in the circular forest at the highest point of the Montebello vineyard where an Estruscan tomb was uncovered only a few years ago. From here there is a clear view of Montepulciano, Montalcino, and the tower of Piazza del Campo in Siena.
Tolaini WineryView all from Tolaini Winery
The harvested grapes, once debunched, go through the optical selection machine where the grapes must meet the preset criteria to pass through: any small, green or squished grapes and all debris are ejected and only the ripe whole grapes make it into the vats. The vats are cooled to 5C-10C (41F - 50F) and the grapes are added whole to each tank for a cold soak before natural selected yeast strains are added to initiate fermentation. Vinification at Tolaini is done in 26 stainless steel temperature-controlled tanks with a two chamber system, while the best grapes from each harvest are fermented in open-top fermenters made of French Allier oak (12 units of 4500 liter capacity), a time-proven touch that increases the complexity in the wines. The generous array of tank sizes allows for individual parcels of grapes to be fermented and stored separately. These batches are kept apart through subsequent barrel aging in new French oak barrels between 18-25hl before blending.