Mongrana Bianco, our new Vermentino-based wine, is a taste of things to come. Made with the same minimal intervention to mirror the defining traits of its red sibling, it perfectly illustrates the qualities we seek from the Maremma: restrained power, coastal freshness and the purity of fruit which is our hallmark. The inaugural 2020 vintage gave us about 15,000 bottles which we hope to grow over time.
A bit of background
Querciabella arrived in Alberese, Grosseto, in the late 90s. Here is where we trialled biodynamic viticulture before applying it to the rest of our estates, working with a range of international grape varieties yielding traditional and innovative styles. Our breakthrough in Maremma came in 2005 with Mongrana Rosso, a deceptively simple expression of Sangiovese, Cabernet and Merlot, followed a few years later by Turpino, a barrel-aged red blend, sumptuously rich and spicy.
Vine age and two decades of biodynamic and organic practices mean our wines now really are better than ever. However, as a fine producer with a penchant for experimentation, we could not be resting long on our laurels. So, enamoured with the intensity of flavours and that subtle hint of saline minerality that characterise the region’s white grapes, we decided to create a delicious and approachable white wine that delivers the refinement you’d expect from Querciabella.
The 2020 vintage posed more than one challenge during the growing season. From the April frosts that hit the young buds, thus limiting the vintage’s volume, to the persistent dry and hot weather conditions that lasted well into the Summer. Meticulous attention was required in the vineyards, especially to regulate the ratio between vegetation and well-formed bunches. Fortunately, timely rains that fell in mid-august turned a laborious year into an excellent vintage that resulted in incredibly fragrant musts, sweet and balanced to the taste.
The Making of
Mongrana Bianco is the result of our close relationship with local, organic growers that share our same commitment to sustainability and authenticity. From the vineyard to bottle, we oversee the winemaking process to assure the wine’s utmost quality and its distinct territorial character.
The vineyards where our Vermentino comes from are planted on gently rolling hills at 30–50 m a.s.l. on the typical iron-rich soils of Southern Maremma, a mixture of sparse silt and alluvial sand, with areas of gravel and surface pebbles. The average age of the vines is about 10 years. The grapes are harvested first thing in the morning when cooler temperatures preserve the aromatic qualities and natural acidity of the grape. Following fermentation, the wine matures for about 5 months in small cement and stainless steel tanks before bottling.
With its bright yellow colour and green hues, Mongrana Bianco is instantly pleasing to the eye. On the nose, it is finely balanced, opening with hints of citrus and tangy yellow fruit accompanied by elegant floral notes. The Mediterranean character of the wine is announced by herbal notes of rosemary and thyme and is further enhanced by its refreshing saline quality.
Light and elegant body with a crisp, mineral-driven palate that delivers gorgeous lime, pear, grapefruit, quince and yellow apple and frames the delicate structure. The lingering finish with its fresh almond bitterness is typical of a Classic Vermentino from Maremma.
Pairing Mongrana Bianco
Charming and inviting, with expressive fruit on the palate, Mediterranean herbal notes and a delightful, lengthy finish, Mongrana Bianco balances its plush texture with food-friendly acidity. As expected of a Vermentino from the Maremma, it works great for spring and summer al fresco dining when vegetables such as asparagus, peas and fava beans bring vibrancy and vitality to the table. Its versatility makes it even excellent with artichokes, traditionally a tricky pairing!
It’s the perfect choice for many social occasions, from smart lunches to casual, fun get-togethers to pair with tasty appetizers, salty snacks and pizzas. Tabbouleh Salad, Falafel with Hummus, Marinated vegetables with tangy vinaigrettes or dishes where herbs are predominant such as pasta or gnocchi with vegan pesto are a natural match, too.
But, while easy drinking and refreshing, Mongrana Bianco is not just wine for the warmest days. Thanks to the layered mouthfeel, it meets its match also in hearty dishes like Autumn vegan Fritto Misto, a Sunchoke Soup or Chickpeas Tikka Masala. If the salinity of this wine makes you nostalgic for the sea, then a dish of Fried hearts of palm “Calamari” with a vegan tartar sauce or spicy marinara is what you need.
For a delicious party-worthy appetizer or a quick light supper, try our Vegan flatbread recipe.