The love of wine was instilled in the four Castagnedi brothers while working in the Father’s vineyard San Zeno di Colognoca. All four left home and had careers outside the family business. In 1989 they came together, went home, purchased an additional 30 hectares to add to the family’s original 20 hectares, and formed Tenta Sant’Antonio.
The four brothers–Armadno, Paolo, Tiziano and Massimo–who run Tenuta Sant’Antonio have built up an enviable reputation for the wines that they produce under traditional Venetian classifications over the last 20 years. They still show an unusual level of interest in innovation, quality improvement and indeed wines produced outside of those traditional Venetian classifications too. An example is the wine we are reviewing today, “Scaia” Corvina, which is produced from the newest vineyards Monti Garbi. Monti Garbi, in the local dialects, means “sour” or “hard,” which describes the land where the vines are planted. Scaia is “slate” and if you looked at the land where the vines are planted it looks like a pile of rocks.
Intended to be as fruity and as purely flavored as possible, this 2012 Scaia Corvina was produced by using the very unusual technique of inducing malolcatic fermentation before alcoholic fermentation to achieve this aim. Fermentation and maturation was also in stainless steel tanks only – no oak was applied to this wine.
The result is a ruby red color of moderate intensity, with some flashes of purple towards the rim of this wine. The alcoholic legs induced by the 13% alcoholic content is highly visible as this wine is swirled, even though the alcoholic content itself is relatively low. The wine has wonderfully pure aromas of dark cherry and plum, which rise from the glass as this wine is swirled, with hints of violets also wafting around. I have to admit, the nose is wonderful.
Medium bodied and intensely fruity on the palate, this wine is fantastically well-balanced and persistent, with the pure fruit notes from the nose. The wine makers use very limited tannic extraction, and as a result get great intensity of cherry and plum flavors. The tasting notes even suggest that you could chill this wine slightly on a warm day, that is how versatile the Scaia is.
Truly original and impressively accomplished, this 2012 Scaia Corvina should be drunk before the end of 2017.
Currently a $12 bottle of wine, I am certain that the Scaia will be selling for $50 a bottle once these vines mature. I got my bottle at Center Street Wine and Sprits in Wallingford, CT. Tell them Griffy sent you!