We’ve just received an update on the 2017 vintage at A Mano from Mark Shannon and Elvezia Sbalchiero, as Elvezia writes below:
I've finally convinced Mark to share with me a few details on the 2017 harvest - our 20th for A Mano!
Puglia experienced an extremely cold winter and incredibly hot summer and yields are down at least 30% on average, with grape prices rising accordingly. However, in the hands of the best growers, the fruit is fantastically healthy and ripe.
The harvesting of the Fiano grapes began much earlier than usual - on the 10th August. They will continue fermentation in tank for a further two weeks and are showing great potential, with beautiful peach aromas and high levels of glycerol and extract.
Most of the Primitivo has now been harvested too. The initial 100 tonnes of grapes arriving at the winery were almost too powerful, dark and concentrated, but fortunately the wines from the later harvests are now showing lovely balance. When all the wines have finished fermentation, Mark's skill in blending the different tanks will come to the fore.
Our 'Prima Mano' Primitivo is only made in the very best years and the 2017 vintage is so good that we're delighted to say that we will be producing the wine for the third consecutive year!
The fruit picked from the first Susumaniello vineyard is ideal for the wonderful 'Appassito' style and now the owner of the second vineyard is kindly waiting for our go-ahead to harvest, which makes our life so much easier!
Finally, we have just started the drying process for the Negroamaro, which Mark has done before with great results and is going to try again. So, there might also be a Negroamaro Appassito in the future - watch this space!