New Arrivals: Macea

We are delighted to announce that we have just received a small shipment from Macea, the infamous 2.5-hectare vineyard that lies in a rainforest of wildflowers and herbs, perched on the edges of a hillside.

Cipriano Barsanti’s family arrived here in the 1960s. His father, Mauro, planted vines on the miniature terraces surrounding their family home. Here, he worked the vineyards of Montepulciano, which grew alongside his vegetable gardens.

Cipo, who had spent some years studying oenology returned to Macea in 1999 with a vision: the vineyards, planted between 150m & 350m, rich in minerals and fast draining, had the potential to produce wines that could rival many of the references he had discovered during his studies. He and his brother Antonio decided to replant the long-suffering Montepulciano, which had produced tiny yields in the cool micro-climate of the valley, replacing the vines with well-suited international varieties – Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Grigio and Pinot Noir, the labels of which now reveal the artwork of their late father.

2003 marked a second turning point at Macea, a conversion to biodynamics, and a realisation of the opportunity to embrace the vineyards and small cellar; the decision was made to work only with spontaneous yeasts and limit sulphur use. Winemaking today is much the same as it was then, with vinification in open vats of 5-10 hectolitres. Wines are racked and left in barrel without being racked again for over a year and are then moved to steel to rest for six months before bottling.

Macea, as the brothers say themselves, is a ‘special place’. They have managed to go beyond biodynamics; vines grow wild on what seems to be the steepest (and smallest) slope of vines in all of Tuscany, producing unique and profound wines, pure and honest, bottling a true sense of place. Don’t just hope to drink these wines, but seek them out. If you can find your way to Macea, we urge you to do so, it is so very worth it.

One case of each cuvée is available online now.