From Vine Farmer:
Aris Blancardi’s Selvadolce farm is endowed with breathtaking coastal vines: overlooking the sea and marked by the fierce Mistral winds that also define the Rhone Valley and nearby Provence. Seeing Selvadolce, smelling the complex mélange of plants and life mixed with a kiss of the sea and winds from the mountains, it all makes sense. This is complex land.
The reuslts at Selvadolce turn almost all popular wisdom about "natural" and "conventional" wines upside down. The wines are routinely opened days before tasting with no oxidation. They never re-ferment in bottle despite sometimes having residual sugar and no added sulfites. This is in sharp contrast to the mass of “natural” wines that barely make it to the next town with any vitality.
The secret is patience and not coercing the wines in any way. Wines are fermented and aged in old oak, on the fine lees, for as long as is needed – if a fermentation takes 3 years to finish, so be it. Aris explains that natural stability is always achieved when the wines are given the time and latitude to determine their own path. Paolo Bea and Nikolaihof in Austria achieve parallel results using similar methods.
For me, I cannot recall ever tasting such beautiful white wines with almost no fruit aromas. The aromas are of the land - rocks, salt, herbs, flowers - and perhaps some fruit. It simply works; the wines have soaring aromatics that pull the drinker in closer with each smell. A bottle here and there is typically all that can be found as most are snapped up quickly upon release by those in the know. Each bottle bears the number produced that vintage; a clear reminder that nature is in charge.
The Wine - Rebosso is the only selection of younger vine Vermentino (planted in the early 2000's). Rebosso is a wine of palpable texture with a vibrant, golden hue, although skin contact isn't typical. If needed, long lees contact with battonage is the norm (depending on the vintage). Primary fermentation, malolactic fermentation and aging all happen in older barrel with o fining or filtering. Some vintages are released relatively quickly and others may rest in barrel for an extended period while the wine resolves and evolves. Rebosso is an incredibly beautiful wine with a perfume that is unlike any other wine, bursting with herbs, flowers and other non-fruit aromas. It constantly changes in the glass and engages the drinker with new facets at a dizzying pace. This is liquid art; a poem that leaves a mark. It's clear that Rebosso is an entirely different animal, making even other honest wines somehow feel manufactured, in comparison. This is a reference point Vermentino that every serious student of wine should experience, to know what is possible.
June 2020 Check In - This wine is so original, so beautiful, that it's hard to describe. That's fine with me, since wine should not always be so direct. It’s quite simply hard to pull my nose out of the glass; the aromas are so profound and moving. The best glass was 5 days later, with no perceptible oxidation. In fact, the wine became stronger with each passing day.