“I Viaggiatori”, Campania Aglianico
Joaquin’s Aglianico holdings are the stuff of legend: 1.2 hectares of ungrafted pre-phylloxera vines between 150 and 200 years of age, trained high above the ground and spaced widely, with gnarled trunks and vast arms that reach across the rows. This astonishing parcel is located in the commune of Paternopoli, in the Taurasi appellation’s southernmost and coolest subzone. Raffaele produces a Taurasi DOCG only in certain vintages. In other vintages, he produces this declassified wine: “I Viaggiatori” (“The Travelers”), a gutsy but finesse-driven Aglianico. Aged in used oak barrels following a 15-day maceration in old open-top wooden casks, it combines tangy, resonant acidity with dark cherry fruit, and while the tannins are a bit punchy as per the variety, the lingering impression is one of freshness.