As with all of the Borgo del Tiglio wines, the 2017 Milleuve is crafted from the family's low yielding vineyards: An extremely thorough selection of individual grapes in the field, harvesting in loosely-packed small crates to avoid crushing during transport, soft pressing and fermentation in small wooden barrels, and a long refining period in neutral barrels and bottle before release. "Milleuve" pronounce (mil-ā-ew-vā) means "a thousand grapes" and is a perfumed blend of Tocai, Malvasia, Chardonnay, Sauvignon and Riesling. It is a declassification of barrels that Nicola and Mattia chose by tasting individual lots and combining them for a harmonious blend. Their philosphy is to listen to their palates and let that guide the work.
The Collio DOC's storied history dates to the days of ancient Rome. By the mid-3rd Century, wine production was so abundant that Emperor Maximinius requisitioned barrels in order to build a bridge over the Isonzo River near Gorizia for his legions to move from Thrace to Aquileia where a siege was imminent. Grape growing continued to flourish despite the fact that the borders of Italy, Slovenia and neighboring countries changed whenever new government powers were established. By the second half of the 1800s, research and innovation heralded a new age of production in Collio.
Today over 300 growers, 180 bottlers and one cooperative crafts wine cultivated from 500 hectares of hillside vineyards with typically low yielding vines, an important factor to the quality of Collio's prestigious white wines. White accounts for 11% of the total production of Friuli Venezia Giulia and only 3% of Italian white wine as a whole. The Collio denominazione allows only certain grapes, either mono-varietal or blended: up to 12 white and five red varieties are permissible. Indigenous grapes include Friulano (formerly known as Tokaj Friuliano), Malvasia, Ribolla Gialla, and Picolit, a sweet grape. International varieties such as Chardonnay, Pinot Bianco, Riesling, and Sauvignon thrive here as well. Often blended, they work together to offer expressive floral and orchard fruit aromas ranging from petrol and citrus to tropical, honeyed and herbal. Collio enjoys a mild climate with summers that are hot but not stifling and winters that are cold and often rainy. Dramatic diurnal temperature shifts and local winds create a unique micro-climate, and thanks to the warm currents from the Adriatic Sea grapes are kept dry with the mountains to the north protecting the territory from cold winds. The unique soil, called Ponca, consists of layered marl and sandstone that offer elements of minerality and salinity to the wines.
We love the complexity, purity, and energy of this orchard and citrus fruit, mineral-laced 2017. It begs for briny seafood and lemon-garlicky pasta but welcomes richer foods like white meat, truffles and cream sauces. Fans of Giuseppe Quintarelli's Veneto Bianco and Collio's famous mono-varietal wines will enjoy the value of this vibrant blend.