A GRAPE SEALED WITH A HANDSHAKE

by | Dec 28, 2020 | Red, Wine Reviews | 0 comments

I Cacciagalli  Sphaeranera 2016 Igt

Cacciagalli Sphaeraner 2016

Cacciagalli Sphaeraner 2016

In the realm of wines, a story unfolds – a story of a grape, a warrior, and a legacy that refused to fade. Behold, the I Cacciagalli Sphaeraner 2016 IGT, a wine that scoffs at submission, a wine that once teetered on the brink of extinction. Let me not keep you in suspense; this grape’s persona deserves the spotlight right from the start. It arrives with a predatory demeanor, a brooding garnet cloak embracing its thick skin, and it reveals a tapestry of flavors – wild black fruit commingles with melted chocolate, a peppery kick lends a fiery embrace, akin to the subtle smokiness of aged salumi. And yet, tannins caressing like a whisper, its warmth intertwined with the grace of age. Make way for the regal Pallagrello, a noble contender ready to wage its battle on your very taste buds.

The Pallagrello Nero, a black grape with an ancient lineage, has called Campania, Italy its home since the era of the wise Greeks. Naming grapes seems to have been the Greeks’ creative pastime, and this grape was christened after the dual bunches that gracefully curve into a U shape – nature’s elegant signature. It thrives nestled at the base of an extinct volcano, Roccamonfina, in its native haven, the Province of Caserta in Naples. Now, this isn’t the fiery Vesuvius, mind you; instead, it’s a land that begets wines bold and assertive, but often short-lived. Pallagrello, however, is intricate, its nature refined and fragile, its yield modest. Amongst the vines, its sibling lingers – Pallagrello Bianca, a more delicate counterpart.

Pallagrello’s origin undoubtedly carries a hint of royalty. In the 1800s, the Royal Palace of Caserta stood as the stately abode, commissioned for King Ferdinand IV, a relic from the House of Bourbon-Two Sicilies. This Baroque masterpiece, anointed by UNESCO as the largest of its kind worldwide, echoes with historical grandeur. Yet, there’s another narrative woven into this Sicilian tapestry, that of Teano – a village in Caserta where a fiery Italian patriot and the then King of Sardinia clashed. In a symbolic act, a handshake wrested the kingdom from Neapolitan Bourbons, and King Emmanuel of Sardinia was crowned ruler of a united Italy. Such influence seems almost mythical in today’s world.

Pallagrello Nero Black

Pallagrello Nero Black

But let’s cast aside the scepter of history and focus on the realm of grapes and vines. Pallagrello was the chosen one, a prized emblem amid the battleground of two Sicilian cities and Naples. Could this have unknowingly birthed the seeds of the Mafia? It’s a playful thought, yet what stands paramount is that the Palace held Pallagrello Nero in high esteem. Alas, the ferocious phylloxera proved its might, yet the grape’s roots endured, etching its story into the very soil.

From the heart of a working farm, where nothing is wasted, emerges our wine. I Cacciagalli, an Azienda Agricola/Vinicola, isn’t just a winery; it’s a realm of farming, of wines, and perhaps a staycation in itself. Nestled in the royal embrace of Caserta, this blossoming estate rests at the foot of the dormant Roccamonfina volcano. Native grapes find rebirth here, but Pallagrello, resilient as ever, refused to bow to phylloxera’s grasp.

Sealed with a handshake, perhaps, a pact forged by Italian monarchs, yet Pallagrello stands ready to march beyond borders. So, as you explore the treasures of southern Italy, let me ask, what hidden grapes are you unearthing, what tales are you unraveling in each sip?

Ciao! I hope you enjoyed the article I Cacciagalli  Sphaeranera 2016 Igt

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