“My wines are who we are. Talking about each of them is telling every single emotion with the same intensity that I would like to be alive in every glass, in every sip, in every glance,” comments Claudio Cipressi.
Claudio Cipressi, born in Molise, gives profound value and enthusiasm to the viticulture of his region, a southern Italian region with a unique landscape of largely unspoiled areas weaved with about 8,000 hectares of land dedicated to vineyards. His wines have a special aspect that resonates his dedication to his work and pride to his territory and culture. A sip gives you a whole lot more than a glass of wine.
Coming from a different line of work, Claudio stepped into the world of wines at the end of the 1980s practically from scratch, without knowledge about wines. He explored the idea of putting the land that he inherited to viticulture, something that his parents didn’t dwell on even if they were already into farming. But it seemed like he was destined to become a winemaker for he met Michele Tanno, an agronomist from Campobasso and from there, his commitment to the recovery and cultivation of Tintilia, an almost lost grape variety, moved forward and yielded to positive results.
Claudio Cipressi Winery is located in San Felice del Molise at 600 meters above sea level on 15 hectares land cultivated solely with native grapes. Certified for its organic agricultural method utilized in the vineyards out of respect for the environment, as well as certified organic since 2014 in the cellar. The manual selective sorting of bunches starts in the vineyards and in the cellar, he uses only traditional, non-invasive methods in the processing of the grapes. He puts particular attention to the temperatures of the musts and the use of the barrels without interfering with the fruit and without altering the aromas and flavors of the original vines, respecting its authentic personality. His cultivation is primarily focused on the region’s autochthonous red grape variety, Tintilia, which he has dedicated 12 hectares of land, while the rest are cultivated with Montepulciano, Falanghina and Trebbiano. His production of Tintilia ranges from Metodo Classico sparkling wines, still rosé, red wines and sweet wine.
The origin of a grape variety had been under debate. Old narratives that say that the grape comes from Spain and that its name means tinto, which is red in Spanish, or other stories of its origin had been ruled out for after the studies done by the University of Molise and University of Bari, confirmed that it doesn’t have any parentage found with any other grape variety, which makes Tintilia a unique grape that grows in Molise. And it is in this region where it found its home and where it best expresses its distinctive personality. Claudio Cipressi’s cultivation of this grape in the 1990s contributed fundamentally to the rediscovery of this variety. From his exemplary work, other vineyard owners and wine producers worked towards bringing back the grape to its rightful land and taking out its best expressions with their own styles of vinification.
Tasting of the Wines
For the tasting in Rome, the chosen restaurant is Alfredo alla Scrofa, internationally renowned for its legendary pasta dish, Fettucine Alfredo invented by Alfredo in 1914 at the same location, which was made popular almost a century ago, in 1927, by Hollywood actors Douglas Fairbanks and Mary Pickford.
Metodo Classico Blanc De Noir Pas Dosé 2017
Obtained from 100% Tintilia cultivated at 500 meters above sea level which were hand-picked, pressed softly. Refinement on the lees for 36 months. Straw yellow in color with fine and persistent effervescence, an intense nose of tropical fruits, yellow stone fruits, notes of nut and bread crust while the mouth lends a good thread of freshness and sapidity which finishes long.
Metodo Classico Rosé Pas Dosé 2017
Obtained from 100% Tintilia cultivated at 500 meters above sea level which were hand-picked, pressed softly, short maceration on the skins. Refinement on the lees for 36 months. In the glass, it presents a brilliant orange salmon rose color, fine and persistent bubbles, an intense nose of powder blush, strawberries, dark berries and toasted nuts, while on the palate, it presents sapidity, moderate freshness and persistence in the finish.
Collequinto Tintilia del Molise Rosé DOP 2021
Obtained from 100% Tintilia grapes harvested by hand, pressed softly then left to decant at 10°C for 12 hours, fermentation and refinement in stainless steel vats. In the glass, it presents a bright cherry pink color going towards copper, an intense fruit-forward nose of powder blush, rose petals, strawberries and red berries while the mouth corresponds with its fruity aromas which envelopes the mouth and long finish.
Settevigne Tintilia del Molise DOP 2016
Obtained from 100% Tintilia grapes which went through maceration of a minimum of 12 days, then aged in stainless steel vats for 36 months and another 6 months in the bottle. Vibrant ruby red in color with garnet reflections, an intense and complex nose of chocolate, balsamic notes and dried spices while on the palate it is smooth, round and the ripe flavors with notes of herbs and moderate acidity linger long with persistence. An elegant wine that is seeing a slow and beautiful evolution.
Macchiarossa Tintilia del Molise DOP 2017
Obtained from 100% Tintilia grapes which went through maceration of a minimum of 12 days, then aged in stainless steel vats for 36 months and another 6 months in the bottle. Ruby red with garnet reflections with a complex nose of poutpourri, dried sweet spices, balsamic notes and ripe dark berries while on the palate it has pronounced acidity, round, integrated tannins and full-bodied with long finish.
Tintilia 66 Tintilia del Molise DOP 2015
Obtained from 100% Tintilia, aged in new oak for 36 months and 6 months in the bottle. Brilliant garnet red color with an intense and complex nose of dried spices – black pepper, cardamom, cinnamon, balsamic notes, black cherries and dark berries, and on the palate it shows softness, pronounced acidity and velvety tannins, ends with dried tea leaves.
Dulce Calicis Vino Passito 2011
Obtained from100% Tintilia, which were left in open crates in front of the cellar in the open after harvest for a month, no added sugar, the residual sugar comes from what remains after fermentation. Limited production of 500 bottles. Bright dark amber color with complex nose of dried spices, sweet mature fruits of dark cherries, dark berries and raisins. Sweet dark fruits with a thread of freshness that equilibrates in the mouth, leaving the mouth with a balanced concentration.
Address: Contrada Montagna, 5B – 86030 San Felice del Molise (CB), Italy
Tel: +39 3351244859