Picked this up during a visit to the farm/cellar in March 2017; been resting at 57F ever since. Upon removing the cork, the first aromas are of sweet oak, ripe red/dark red berries and the lightest touch of soil. I immediately poured this into decanter for 30 minutes’ aeration; the wine pivoted quickly, shifting/evolving each 5 minutes thereafter in this vessel. Having returned to bottle as I finished cooking, the wine was served some 45 minutes after first opening, at 66F.
Nearing 90 minutes open, some iron/clay notes along with pine/forest came alive, while on the med+ bodied palate some excess weight was shed putting this firmly within its ‘fighting weight’.
The first glass was a relatively simple but very attractive blend of the initial aromas of oak and creamy berries; those quickly dissipated after only 5 minutes in the glass. Following, it then moved toward the center, which was more a story of grape, place, and vintage rather than wood and sweet fruit. That said, it was the second glass, at about the 75 minute-open mark that the wine re-invented itself: the berries exploded in volume and intensity, the tannins firmed up, the acids came to attention, and the flavors broadened, becoming deeper at the same time.
And here I sit, two hours after opening this, and it’s nothing short of lovely – a wine that I’m no longer driven to taste, but rather compelled to invest myself in its vast assortment of vivid, compelling aromas. Every now and again, some notes of campfire, tree moss/mushrooms revel in a cheerful dance. I’m feeling quite fortunate just now. 13,5% abv., drink thru 2032.
the above photo, taken during a visit in Oct 2019, shows the scale of the replanting (nearly 40%) of the vineyards of Casa Emma; all planting will follow the organic philosophy, as it has been for most of the previous decade.
p.s Last week, in some final fete meant to give a finger to the impending lockdowns that Covid-19 will undoubtedly foist upon my little part of the world (6350′ near Denver, Colorado), I opened a 2018 Casa Emma Harenae, the first wine (it’s 100 Sangiovese) Casa Emma has ever produced entirely in (custom made) amphora. It blew my mind (great on day 1, an out of body experience on day 2).