Panizzi are based in the Medieval Tuscan town of San Gimignano . Since they were established in 1989 they have built up an estate of 60 hectares across four main vineyard sites – Lazzaretto, Santa Margherita, Montagnana and Larniano. Their focus is on producing a range of whites from the local grape variety of Vernaccia di San Gimignano, that express the characteristics of the grape and also the vineyards on which they are grown.
To allow this to happen as naturally as possible sustainability is key; no pesticides, herbicides or chemical fertilizers are used and from 2020 the wines are certified organic. All wines are also vegetarian and vegan friendly.
We’re delighted to introduce you to three new arrivals from Panizzi.
The entry level Vernaccia di San Gimignano 2020 is made from a blend of grapes from all four vineyards. It’s a fresh, easy drinking style offering great value. Its hand harvested and gently pressed, fermented in stainless steal and aged on lees for 5 months. It’s dry, crisp and mineral with apple, pear and white peach fruit. A great aperitif and works well with fish, vegetable dishes and young fresh cheeses.
The Santa Margherita 2018 is sourced exclusively from this ‘cru’ vineyard. Half of the wine is fermented in stainless steel and the other half in barrique. After 6 months these are blended together and aged in bottle for another 12 months. It has more weight and richness whilst retaining a lovely freshness and precision.
The 2016 Riserva is a fabulous wine produced from a single vineyard called Villa delle Rose. The fruit sees the same gentle treatmen as the other cuvées but is aged on lees in french oak for 12 months, and for a further 6 months in stainless steel before being bottled. It then rest for a further 2 years in bottle before being released onto the market . It has the deepest colour of the 3 wines with grapefruit, melon and a hint of vanilla. It’s a wine of character and complexity that shows great balance and fine minerality. It works well with chicken and fish dishes with cream sauces as well as aged cheeses.
I was lucky enough to be invited to be invited to a tasting dinner at Lorne in London, where we got to try multiple vintages of these bench mark Vernaccias. Below is the menu for those looking for some further food and wine matching inspiration. It also demonstrated how well these wines age if given half a chance! I’ve put a few bottles of the Santa Margherita ’18 and the Riserva ’16 in the cellar to enjoy over the next 5 years and can thoroughly recommend them to you.