The estate Schiavenza is a really interesting one and with a good restaurant in Serralunga d’Alba that offers a great panorama view of the site while having lunch there as we did on our recent trip to Piedmont this May. The estate is run today by Luciano Pira, his wife Maura and Maura’s brother Walter Anselma. They use cement for fermentation and only neutral, big Slavonian barrels (botte) with multiple racking.
The 2011 vintage had a warm spring with a whole month earlier flowering and no rain and a mild winter. Summer turned normal but without much needed rain, so when some warmth finally arrived in mid August, dryness caused some stress in warm vineyards whose soil doesn’t retain water well. However, the vintage is nothing like in the very warm, sweet and forwardly opulent 2007 that we are no fan of. Rather, it resembles the 2009 vintage and is perceived as even more approachable and so far we find it even slightly less sweet in general and still with pleasant terroir slipping through. An overall, better vintage than anticipated after all.
Blood orange middle with red purple tints and orange edges.
A lovely, fresh nose with loads of rose petals, dried oil paint, leather, tobacco, dried herbs and bee wax.
The palate emerges as very fresh thanks to the vivid, fresh and crisp acidity. Texture is already soft and tannins are riper than expected, thick and smooth, but yes, they still are present in the quite persistent finish. Very elegant and no unpleasant dryness what so ever with an abundance of very ripe fruit, notes of chewing tobacco, licorice-root and dried herbs.
This is an elegant, smooth and quite feminine Cerretta and still with that pure, thick Serralunga-touch and pleasant firmness when it is really singing without being too sweet and with fantastic high-quality acidity. We are impressed. This may be even better in two years, but don’t wait for too long.