Bisol launches red wine from VeniceBy Lucy Shaw
Prosecco producer Bisol has launched a red wine made from Merlot and Carmenere grapes grown on a tiny island in the Venetian lagoon.
A sister wine to Venissa, a golden-hued wine made from Dorona grapes grown in a 0.8-hectare vineyard on the island of Mazzorbo, Rosso Venissa 2011 hails from a 40-year-old vineyard close to the island of Torcello.
Planted by the Armenians, the 2.8-hectare limestone and clay vineyard is on the remote, flamingo-filled archipelago where the islands of Costanziaca and Ammiana once stood.
The brainchild of Gianluca Bisol, Rosso Venissa 2011, made by Desiderio Bisol and Roberto Cipresso, is a blend of 82% Merlot and 18% Carmenere.
Fermented in steel, the wine is aged for a year in new and used French oak before being transferred to bottle and aged for a further year prior to release.
According to its makers, the ruby red, violet-scented wine has been influenced by the mineral-rich terroir of the lagoon. The nose is said to offer notes of “blackberries and blueberries tobacco, liquorice, dark chocolate and brine”.
“I wanted to illustrate that it’s possible to make a great red wine from the lagoon and show the world our terroir. The wine has an international character but is also very distinctive,” Matteo Bisol told the drinks business.
“The lagoon location of the vineyard imbues the wine with mineral and saline notes. In a competitive wine market it’s important to come out with different things,” he added.
Just 4,476 37.5cl Murano glass bottles, 188 magnums, 88 Jeroboams and 36 Imperials have been produced of Rosso Venissa’s inaugural 2011 vintage.
In keeping with the original Venissa wine, which uses a sheet of gold leaf in place of a label, Rosso Venissa boats a sheet of copper for its front label.
The copper sheets are applied by hand along with the name of the wine and its serial number. Rosso Venissa, which will be sold on allocation, has an RRP of €120 per 37.5cl bottle.