Produced on 8ha of the San Felice estate from the ancient indigenous grape variety Pugnitello, meaning 'little fist'. It was rediscovered in 1984, in conjunction with the University of Florence as part of San Felice's intensive research programme. The soil is predominantly calcareous marl with abundant gravel-pebbles, and Guyot and spur-pruned cordon trellis systems are used. The grapes are sorted before being destemmed and crushed. After fermentation, at 28-30C, the wine is racked and the grapes pressed. The wine is then moved to 225 litres French oak barriques, where it stays for 18-20 months, followed by 8 months in bottle.
An open, spicy nose with aromas of cedar, cherry, leather and forest fruits. The palate combines bitter cherry, ripe black fruits and mocha backed by smoky notes and well integrated spicy oak. The tannins are fine and evident yet well balanced with the fruit - giving a well-structured wine with dense, dark fruit offset by fresh acidity. Though approachable now it will continue to evolve over the next 5-10 years.
A big, expressive wine needing similarly boldly-flavoured food. Spicy stews, rich beef or lamb dishes, or classic Italian sausage all work well.