Franchetti Passopisciaro 2020
Franchetti is the flagship wine of the Passopisciaro estate, a super-Etna made from Petit Verdot and Cesanese d’Affile grapes planted on rock and volcanic ash in Contrada Guardiola. The plants were planted in the early 2000s soon after Andrea Franchetti purchased the estate, with a high-density, 90cm x 90cm planting spacing and more than 10,000 plants per hectare.
When he arrived on Etna, Andrea Franchetti had in mind a wine that was denser and more concentrated than the light and delicate wines made from native grapes. Therefore, while wines made from Nerello Mascalese represent the wine of the land with their unique expression of terroir, Franchetti is a producer’s wine that expresses and represents one man’s idea of wine and personal vision. To achieve the result he had in mind, Andrea Franchetti planted Petit Verdot, a late variety from Bordeaux, and Cesanese d’Affile, an aromatic variety from Lazio that he helped save from extinction. Because of the volcanic soil, the Petit Verdot becomes more spicy and peppery, fine and upright in body, but still with great structure. Cesanese d’Affile, on the other hand, which is more delicate and aromatic, acts as a counterpart to Petit Verdot, maintaining its great aging potential.
2005 was the first vintage produced. The result is a wine of great concentration, as black as the lava and volcanic smoke that flows from Etna. Andrea Franchetti describes it as “the wine that comes from trying to make a completely different wine on Etna, to express what my idea of an Etnean wine is.”
The blend changes every year according to the vintage and the results obtained in the vineyard, no predetermined recipes or formulas are followed, only the taste and interpretation of the producer. Vines are carefully selected, leaving only five fruits per plant, followed by vinification in stainless steel, with malolactic fermentation and aging in new French oak barrels. Andrea Franchetti’s style is evident in all his wines and in all vintages, year after year it is embodied in wines of great richness, depth and complexity that are the hallmarks of his production.