Meet Soave Vigne Vecchie. Paolo Castagnedi introduces it to us.

Tenuta Sant’Antonio can always be relied upon to produce exciting and interesting Soave, partly because its wines are produced in the wider designated area which is often identified as a production area for Amarone, rather than Soave. But the estate has an ace up its sleeve - Monte Ceriani, a piece of land with old vineyards on the hillside at the foot of the Illasi Valley, home to a complex, fruity and tasty Soave with an all-consuming mineral note. Hence the decision to create Soave Vigne Vecchie, putting to good use this exceptionally unusual and identifiable terroir, and a vineyard which is more than 30 years old. Paolo Castagnedi explains the decision “You’d never expect the best student in your class to come up with the same results as the others. Well, this is the philosophy behind our decision to produce an important Soave, thanks to a carefully chosen vine we can expect so much more from. Producing Vigne Vecchie involves strictly selecting the bunches at the beginning of the process and then the various wine-making stages; this allows the truly distinctive nature of the varietal to come through and not what we, as producers, believe it should be like: half the wine is aged in French durmast oak barrels holding 5 hectolitres each and the remaining 50% goes into stainless steel. The wine undergoes bâtonnage every 10/15 days to increase and protect its complexity. As a result it exhibits a distinctive mineral note and exceptional freshness. We are only going to do it with certain vintages. The 2008 vintage shows character and has a more opulent and complex style, 2009 on the other hand is different again, with more emphasis on freshness and an underlying elegance and finesse. It is an important white wine, with great character, which could even replace certain reds.”