‘Il Mostro’ was conceived as a new experimental project from Poggio Anima. The names of the wines are derived from children’s bedtime warnings throughout Europe. This is a single-vineyard wine from the Monteodorisio Vineyard in Chieti, Abruzzo. The Marchesani family has been farming this since the mid-1960s and following the marriage of Sebastano Jasci to Lucia Marchesani, the newly married couple embarked on a new frontier of higher quality farming. Sebastiano pushed for organic farming and became one of the first certified organic vineyards in Italy in 1978. Today their son Nicola has taken over the winemaking and is continues to push forward in the vineyard as well as the cellar. ‘Ragana’ is an ancient pre-Indo-European spirit and a powerful prophetess who reveals the future. She is best known in the Baltic states and is thought to rule over fertility and regeneration and is the guardian of nature’s cycles: creation, growth, decline and destruction. In many ways she is the spirit of balance. It is this encompassing life cycle which inspired this vinous concoction.
The Pecorino and Riesling were hand-harvested from two blocks that sit in an amphitheater that wraps around from southeast to northeast and ascending from 750 to 850 feet in elevation. The majority of the grapes were cooled down at the winery and fermented at a cool 60ºF with the remaining grapes being whole-bunch pressed to tank and chilled very cold to prevent fermentation and held in tank. Primary fermentation occurred naturally in a sealed stainless-steel tank and when the wine reached 15 g/L residual sugar the tank was cooled down in order to hold the ferment at 10 g/L. The wine was bottled and topped with more of the unfermented juice from tank and the bottles were crown sealed. Secondary fermentation occurred over the next 2-3 months and the wine was disgorged and topped up along with a small addition of sulfur helping to preserve freshness and ward off unwanted microbes.