New from Peter Zemmer, from North Italy’s Alto Adige, is Peter Zemmer Pinot Grigio Riserva “Giatl” (pronounced Ghee-AT-uhl) 2016.
Peter Zemmer is the only Alto Adige producer with Riserva certification for Pinot Grigio, making the Riserva “Giatl” 2016 the Alto Adige’s first and only DOC Riserva Pinot Grigio, and one of the few mountain-style Pinot Grigios from anywhere in the world. Alto Adige DOC regulations require a minimum 24 months’ aging before release; neighboring Trentino requires just 12 months of aging.
“Giatl,” meaning “little property” or “little vineyard” in the local dialect, refers to a nearby hamlet of the same name. The wine originates in “Grand Cru” terroir south and southwest of the village, a half-moon-shaped outcrop rising 13- to 16-feet above the surrounding area, the company says. The site spans 24 acres, of which two-thirds are owned or leased by the Zemmer family. Grapes come from the best six acres, four parcels with vines ranging 15- to 30-years in age. Here, instead of the sandy soil prevalent in surrounding vineyards, sand, shingle and chalk dominate. Heat-storing rocky sediment facilitates a longer hang-time. High chalk content gives otherwise poor soil the optimal pH value for nutrient intake by the vines.
Before pressing, grapes undergo a short, cold maceration to enhance the fruitiness of the finished wine, the company says. Alcoholic fermentation takes place in French oak barriques and 460-gallon casks, with Zemmer one of few producers to vinify Pinot Grigio in wood casks. The wine is then stored in the latter for a year, followed by six months’ aging on the lees in stainless steel. After bottling, a six-month rest completes the process.
The color is a straw-golden yellow. On the nose are ripe pear and tropical fruits, the company says, followed by a rich, juicy palate.
Imported by the New York-based HB Wine Merchants, Peter Zemmer Pinot Grigio Riserva “Giatl” Alto Adige DOC 2016 has a suggested retail price of $38 per 750-ml. bottle. It is confirmed for release in in 19 states, plus DC: CA, CT, DE, FL, GA, IL, LA, MD, MI, NC, NJ, NV, NY, OH, PA, SC, TX, WA and WY.