We're an all volunteer website and need your help to keep going. Here are five ways you can contribute:
2 Buy something
3 Submit a story
New in the gift shop, virtualitalia.com logo wear and use items!
PLEASE NOTE: We are experiencing unexpected
technical difficulties caused by our web host. We apologize for
the inconvenience. During your visit you may experience service
and page interruptions - we are in the process of fixing everything and hope to be
fully back on our feet soon.
[an error occurred while processing this directive]
The soil on our hilltop, for instance, is nearly identical to that of Tuscany, so we are able to grow Tuscan varietals under conditions that are extremely similar to their native land. Our Alba Vineyard on Sonoma Mountain experiences the same morning sun and persistent fog that is common in Alba, Italy, so varietals such as Nebbiolo thrive on Sonoma Mountain. It doesn�t hurt that the soil in our vineyard is very similar to that in Alba.
It's not just the barrel it's what you do with it
Whatever the size, we insist on barrels crafted from oak with a very tight grain and small pore size. This allows us to age our wines longer without picking up the excessive oak character that we feels detracts from a wine. We also work closely with the barrel producer to oversee the toasting of the inner surface of each barrel so that it is produced according to our exact specifications.
Why all this fuss over what might seem at first glance to be a simple oak barrel? Well, barrel aging is an integral part of the process of producing a fine wine. While there are quick ways one could add oak nuances to a wine � using oak chips or adding oak extract � these methods produce one-dimensional oak flavors. It�s sort of like the difference between sprinkling a ham with smoke extract versus smoking the ham for several weeks. The longer it takes to infuse the flavor, the better the final result.
Ins and outs of barrel aging
That brings me back to our Gamba barrels and puncheons. Since we are determined to create the finest Italian varietals in the world here at Viansa, it only makes sense to use the finest Italian-made barrels. You wouldn�t try to make an authentic Italian sauce without traditional Italian herbs such as oregano, parsley and basil, would you? It�s the same thing with wine. To make an authentic Italian wine that is true to its roots, we need to duplicate every step of grape growing and winemaking process � from soil and climate to barrels and puncheons.
about the author
© 1998-2005 by virtualitalia.com unless otherwise noted