| Wine Advocate 87 points (Jun 2008)
Querciabella’s 2004 Palafreno (Merlot) is a surprisingly rustic wine for an estate whose house style tends towards polished, elegant wines. Made in a powerful, full-bodied style, it shows notes of earthiness, leather, game and dark cherries. There is plenty of fruit here, but the tannins are coarse and rough around the edges, something that is very uncharacteristic of this great Tuscan vintage. Ultimately the wine’s balance is not convincing and bottle age is unlikely to help to any significant degree. Anticipated maturity: 2010-2018.
Wine Spectator 90 points (Jan 1 2007)
Slightly earthy and meaty on the nose, with hints of tarragon and orange peel. Full-bodied, with silky tannins and a long finish. Racy. Merlot. Not imported into the U.S. Best after 2009. 600 cases made. –JS
|Wine maker notes
|The grapes are carefully selected in the vineyards,
and harvested in 8 kilo crates. They are destemmed,
they are not crushed, and then they are conveyed
into temperature controlled stainless steel vats or,
just for the very best parcels, small temperature
controlled concrete vats. Here, alcoholic fermentation,
maceration and malolactic fermentation take place.
Maceration lasts about 18 days.
Afterwards, the wine is transferred to barriques.
where it undergoes elevage for about one year.
At this stage, the best lots, selected through extensive
tasting, are assembled into the final blend, and they
undergo six more months of elevage.
The oak is 100% French, and comes from Allier,
Troncais, and Vosges. It is 30% new and 70% one
year old. The wine is regularly racked and tasted
during the whole barrel maturation. After bottling
the wine rests for about six months before release.
The wine is released no sooner than 26 months
after harvest. Depending on the vintage, it reaches
maturity between 3 and 5 years after harvest. The
plateau lasts until at least 12 years after harvest.
Palafreno is bottled and packaged exclusively in
the following formats: 0.750 liter [6 bottle wooden
case]; 1.5 liter [1 bottle wooden case]; 3 liter
[1 bottle wooden case]; only in oustanding vintages,
6 liter bottles [1 bottle case] and 12 liter
[1 bottle wooden case] are made.
Palafreno is produced without using any animal
products or byproducts. It is therefore suitable for
vegans and vegetarians.