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2014 AX-1 Sangiovese

2014 AX-1 Sangiovese
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A super-premium, Brunello-style Sangiovese, Noceto's AX-1 is the result of many years of experimentation to produce a California Sangiovese to rival the best Brunellos and Riserva Sangioveses from Italy. Gentle treatment has been the focus of the entire winemaking process -- from a gentle crushing of the grapes and a 10-14 day fermentation in new French oak puncheons to preserve the bright varietal flavors, to 36 months of aging in the same puncheon to soften youthful tannins and gently age the wine, and finally an additional 2-1/2 years of bottle aging. The result is a fruit-packed, full-flavored, complex wine with a lingering finish. The wine has a beautifully maintained acidity which gives the wine crispness and ageability.

"A leafy earthy aroma and traditional olive and grilled plum flavors give this mature wine a tempting Italian flair, while medium to full body and light tannins lend the mouthfeel an mouthwatering grip."  91 points - Wine Enthusiast (11/2020)

"The AX-1 project at Noceto is all about making a Sangiovese that can rival the best Brunello and Chianti Classico Riserva bottlings of Italy, utilizing traditional techniques and minimal intervention to achieve such character, with the occasional California twist thrown in as deemed necessary.  This bottling saw a slow fermentation of Altesino clone Sangiovese in [a unique conical shaped barrel] and new French oak puncheons (large barrels up to 500 liters), 36 months of aging in the same puncheons and an additional two and a half years of bottle aging prior to release.  The result is a rich, full throttle Sangiovese that achieves its style goals admirably, showing deep cherry fruit, lively spice, and tobacco notes delivered over a generous structure that is at once approachable and ageworthy.  Here's to continued experimentation!  Contains 3% Aglianico and 3% Caniaolo Nero."  95 points - Rich Cook,

"Smelling of well-ripened cherries but going well beyond simple fruit and showing a streak of dried herbs and forest-floor spice throughout, this slightly rounded, medium-bodied wine has aged into a polished and complex Sangiovese that, while mature, still has plenty of life.  It is, withal, a pretty and sophisticated piece that invites drinking tonight, but these is no sign of impending old age, nor is there likely to be if it is left to sit in the cellar for a few more years."  90 points/One Puff - Connoisseurs' Guide 

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Greg's Gravatar
(Nov 29, 2020 at 11:18 AM)
Stands up well on side-by-side to Altesino Brunello di Montalcino, but fruitier, Slightly less depth of flavor, Different, but equally enjoyable. This wine should also stand up well to aging.

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