Best winemaker quote ever! Antonini....wants to be invisible in his wines. "If you recognise me, not the place, I say, 'Shit, what have I done wrong?' "
Poggiotondo is located in the western part of Chianti, on the hills that connect the Montalbano with the Arno Valley. This region is more directly influenced by the Mediterranean, which gives Poggiotondo a milder climate than others in Chianti. This slightly maritime Mediterranean climate, calcareous soil, organic farming of the 28 hectares of vines (some at 100m above sea level), the focus on native grapes such as Sangiovese, Canaiolo, Colorino and a small part of Trebbiano as per the original 'Chianti Recipe'.
A few years ago Alberto decided to move back to traditional vineyard management and stopped using synthetic chemicals (herbicides, chemical fertilizers, systemic spraying agents etc) in order to regenerate the soil and make it 'alive'.
Alberto sounds like my kinda guy. Honest, sincere, low BS! All quotes below from a Tim Atkin MW interview in late 2017.....
"Antonini champions wines with "energy, purity, vitality, tension and minerality" rather than what he calls, with deliberate exaggeration, "concentration and viscosity, with three layers of barbecue sauce and ten pizza toppings". The five enemies of terroir, he continues, are "over-ripe grapes, over-extraction, over-oaking, vineyard chemicals and the winemaker".
"Antonini....wants to be invisible in his wines. "If you recognise me, not the place, I say, 'Shit, what have I done wrong?' " As you’d expect, Antonini doesn’t like new oak. "Casks are like vines," he says, "they tend to get better with age." He’s moving away from stainless steel, too, because it "smells and tastes like death" in favour of concrete, "which smells of life".
"How have we allowed people to persuade us that drinkabilty should not beassociated with great wines?" he asks. "It’s crazy."