Cultivation of vines in this area dates originally back to the Etruscans, after which it was abandoned and then begun again. At the end of the 1980s a new phase of viticulture started, with the aim of fully exploiting the potential of the land for production of vines. Today vines are cultivated under IGT- Indicazione Geografica Tipica.
Chardonnay was introduced in 1988 and Sauvignon Blanc in 1989. Red grape varieties then followed: Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, which exceeded all expectations at Terriccio, producing better results than those achieved in their places of origin.
Research and experimentation continued in the early 1990s, with Syrah and Petit Verdot, used to experiment grafting techniques to extend the ampelographic range and in micro-vinification in the cellars to check the capacity for acclimatization and production.
The red and white vines are trained differently: red is grown spurred cordon and white is guyot-trained. In order to protect surface and deeper water table levels, prevent erosion and enhance biodiversity, vegetation is allowed to grow between the trellises (green manuring), sown in autumn. The new vineyards in total comprise about 5,600 vines.
There is a goal that's pursued at Terriccio having to do with vine production, especially after oenologist and strategic consultant Carlo Ferrini joined in the early 1990's, this goal is to reduce production to 900 grammes of grape per plant. This enables the estate to obtain a natural richness and concentration in its wines, that contain high levels of polyphenols, a pronounced structure that's accompanied by a particular softness and a considerablecapacity for ageing.
The course had been set towards the production of the very finest wines and the first results were surprising: the new varieties produced wine that has all the heat, the light and the richness of this particular part of the Tuscan coast, bringing its unique character to the foreground.
In 1993 the research and experimentation finally bore fruit: Lupicaia immediately showed itself to be in a class of its own and in 2000, Castello del Terriccio joined it as another of the estates top wine selection.
For the first time the possibility was considered of planting new varieties that would offer higher quality results than those achieved with Sangiovese and the traditional white grapes previously cultivated. The choice of the varieties to be planted at the Terriccio was particularly delicate, following a careful selection of international strains, in order to ensure not only excellent results but also to maintain a constant level of quality over time. The selection of these vines inevitably entailed renouncing the right to the two local D.O.C.denominations - Montescudaio and Terratico di Bibbona.
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