New year, new you say some. Then there are those who, like us at Cantina Pedres, prefer the motto “New Year, new wine.” We are launching a new line to start 2022 off with a bang to celebrate the Gallura, our land, and the esteemed reputation our wines have earned across the world for their strong identity.
This is much more than a simple novelty; it is a gift that Claudio Salvador, an enologist with international experience, has dedicated to his wife, Antonella Mancini.
This line is a truly extraordinary gift to celebrate an important anniversary, and our winery has decided to share it with all wine lovers.
With the new Antonella Collection line, we want to celebrate these twenty years of commitment and hard work that have allowed us to grow to what we are today.
This is a very refined line, emphasizing the exclusivity of the production, which is why it will be available as a limited edition.
Cantina Pedres’ story…
Like all great enterprises, Cantina Pedres has a long story to tell: it was founded at the end of the nineteenth century with the Mancini family in Gallura, and today it finds its expression in the pragmatism and vision of Antonella, who draws upon the traditional pride held by Sardinian women.
Over these twenty years, there has certainly been no lack of significant challenges, but they have brought much satisfaction and improvement. What better gift is there for a wife than a wine bearing her name to celebrate this achievement.
Today, Cantina Pedres is an important winery showing strong growth in both the Italian and international markets. Behind this success are the innovations spearheaded by Antonella, especially concerning the production system and vineyards.
Our philosophy? Quality, beginning with the land, which is also why we select grapes only of Sardinian origin. These elements come together to offer our clients a fine wine of reliable origin, which is at once exclusive and accessible by all.
The new Vementino Superiore di Gallura in the Antonella Collection
“It is a wine for meditation, which reflects the elegance of a woman, the uniqueness of Sardinian land, and our sun in a glass,” As Antonella defines it, embodying the three fundamental elements: womanhood, land, and sun.
Using grapes solely from Gallurese vineyards, our Cantina offers a local, energetic, and traditional Vermentino.
Tasting the Vermentino Superiore of Cantina Pedres means experiencing Sardinia, inhaling its aromas, and tasting its authenticity.
Live the sensations of Sardinia by tasting the wines of Cantina Pedres.
Teoria and technique are very important in the world of wine, since they are the prerequisites for creating quality products. The third fundamental element can only come through time and it is experience: it is only after producing vintage after vintage that one can acquire the proficiency that is necessary not only to do well, but to innovate too, by applying different methods to grape varieties that one knows deeply in order to create “variations on a theme”.
Knowing a terroir and its varieties through the passage of time is exactly what allows one to create wines that can bring out the best of any varietal, even when it is used to make wine in forms that are different from those that are most widely known or used – and without compromises about quality. This is what we do at Cantina Pedres when it comes, for example, to our rosés and sparklings, since we can count on over one century’s worth of experience with Gallura and its varieties.
For our Brino Rosé, made from Cannonau grapes, we decided to keep the typical aromas of red fruits and violet front and center. Therefore we used cryomaceration, where must is kept in contact with grape skins for little time and at a very low temperature: this maximizes the transfer of primary aromas, and gives the wine a vivid and intense pink hue. The end result of this choice is a refreshing wine with good structure, perfectly capable of being the protagonist of a thousand different occasions while also maintaining the character and indisputable typicality of Cannonau.
For our brut sparklings made from Vermentino we decided instead to focus on the versatility and salty note that are eponymous with the varietal. In order to do so we chose the method invented by the Italian Martinotti, also known as Charmat method: the fermentation in this case begins from must that is put into special containers called autoclaves. Through an attentive and careful craftmanship we can obtain sparklings with a fine, elegant perlage (the term used to describe the texture and size of the bubbles).
The same method is also used for our Moscato wines, which – in accordance with the Gallurese tradition – are created with a comparatively high degree of sugar content.
Once grapes have been led to their optimal maturation during summer months, the moment of harvesting them finally comes: this is when technique takes over from nature, because transforming grapes into wine is an extremely delicate process. After selecting them grapes are pressed in order to get must, a liquid that it a precursor of wine but that will become so only after alcoholic fermentation takes place.
This, in turn, is a process that sees yeasts as its key protagonists, since they transform the sugar contained in the grapes into ethanol and carbon dioxide. In itself this fermentation is a completely natural phenomenon, but the oenologists of Cantina Pedres – Franco Dalla Rosa and Antonio Tiana – monitor it with unwavering attention and rigor. The reason is that its yeasts are living beings, and as such must be looked after constantly in order to avoid them stress or death. This in turn could endanger the fermentation by making it irregular or even stopping it altogether, therefore creating flaws in the finished product.
That is why knowing how and how much one should nourish yeasts is just as important as giving them the best possible environment to operate in, which means acting fast, should the necessity arise, on the temperature of must and on oxygen levels. This is the only way to make sure that we can count on a complete and effective fermentation, which is the keystone of transforming healthy must into quality wine.
As has happened in the vineyards, then, nature’s work is supported in the best possible way by the know-how and expertise of our wine makers in the cellar too, and the philosophy of Cantina Pedres stays the same in this case as well: preventing an issue is better than correcting it once it has presented itself. By doing so we not only allow grapes to express their characteristics in full but we limit any kind of intervention to a minimum, making the brand Cantina Pedres a synonym for quality, healthy and long-lasting wines. A clear example of this is our Classic Line, with Brino, Vermentino di Gallura DOCG, Brino Rosato of Cannonau and Sulitai, Cannonau di Sardegna DOC.
When we think about ripe fruit we immediately think of fruit that is ready for consumption, since it’s reached its optimal levels of sweetness, softness and tastiness. When one applies the same concept to grapes that will be used for making wine, though, the factors that need to be evaluated before starting the harvest are much more numerous. The ratio between sugars and acids in the grapes is one of the main ones, but other factors must also be considered, such as the levels of tannins – which contribute to the overall taste of the wine – the color (tied to the maturity of the seeds) and the evaluation of the levels of aromas, sugars, acidity and Ph.
This makes it necessary for the professionals of the vineyards, like the agronomist of Cantina Pedres Francesco Cadeddu and Marco Mancini, not only to work daily, promptly and methodically, but to proceed as if on a tightrope, in a delicate balancing act between action and reaction and between observation and measurement.
Every day our relationship with the vineyard and its fruits has to deal with an ever more uncertain and unstable weather, one that is oftentimes unpredictable both in terms of temperatures and rainfall, which are extremely important for the final quantity and quality of the wine that we’ll make. A rainy spring, a scorching-hot summer or a disease of the plants can create significant problems in the cellar – and, most importantly, for the finished product.
Phytosanitary treatments are often used to correct some of the imperfections of the grapes that arise during this key period, but at Cantina Pedres we prefer preventing problems rather than treating them. This is our philosophy: thanks to our technical expertise and to constant vigilance in the vineyards we can ward off or limit many issues, thus guaranteeing healthy, high-quality raw material and the best possible wine year after year.
It’s precisely this kind of constant vigilance, and this union of natural factors and technical expertise, that has allowed us to create wines that have been awarded multiple times for their great price/quality ratio, like our Vermentino Sangusta and Vermentino 0789 awarded by the Guide Berebene Gambero Rosso for the best value for money.
When we enter the vineyard, we at Cantina Pedres know that we will get the best results in the glass only if we can balance the idea of the wine we want to produce with respect for the vineyard. We attend to the yearly life cycle of the plants and to the balances that allow the soil to support them with love and competence. It is non-stop work that begins in the middle of winter, when the vine abandons its leaves, matures its wood, and enters dormancy. At that moment, we begin to perform a fundamental operation: pruning.
Pruning a vine is the first way a winemaker can stimulate the plant to produce high-quality grapes, and it varies according to the cultivation method chosen. The method changes both the shape of the vine and the number of buds it will be able to generate from wood at least one year old. For this reason, we decided to cultivate our Vermentino primarily using the Guyot method, where a not very tall stem is accompanied by a horizontal shoot called a “fruiting head” from which the shoots, flowers and bunches are born. A fruiting head can host up to a dozen buds.
This is not only one of the most suitable methods for high-level viticulture but also one of the most versatile: in the case of Vermentino, the Guyot method counterbalances the fact that the first two buds bear little fruit. Whereas Cannonau produces grapes from all the buds stemming from wood of at least one year old. This makes it suitable for multiple cultivation methods.
For our Cannonau we again chose Guyot, but in this case the high number of fruiting buds requires summer pruning in order to stimulate the plant to distribute nutrients optimally to the bunches to increase the quality of the fruit. Similarly, we have chosen to keep the plant close to the ground so that nutrients can flow effortlessly from the roots to the fruit.
During the warm seasons, light and heat will transform the nutrients in the soil into sugars, which will then become alcohol during fermentation. Only well-pruned vines cultivated according to the proper method will be able to successfully face the new year when temperatures will become milder, and the sap will begin flowing out from the pruning. This phenomenon is often referred to as the “weeping” of the vines. About one month later, the first shoots will be born, and they will grow to become leaves and shoots, whereas the first flowers will form two months later.
Once fertilized, these flowers will become grapes. The process will reach its climax first with the veraison when the changing color of the skin indicates the chemical variation of the content, and then the fruit will ripen, and the sugars, acidity, and aromas will have reached the level we desire. We will then finally have that quality raw material we had imagined at the beginning of the year, essential base to produce our Thilibas Vermentino Superior and the Cerasio Cannonau.
More than 3,000 years of history link Sardinia to wine. For a long time, it was thought that the Phoenicians brought grapevines to the island, in a journey to the West, which, from the Caucasus, had slowly seen civilizations in contact with one another bring vine shoots and branches to the Mediterranean. However, some recent archaeological discoveries have established that grapevines were already present on the island during the Nuragic era. Therefore, the arrival of the traders of the Mediterranean civilizations was just one more stimulus to develop and root the cultivation of the vine, century after century, in the culture and economy of our territory and its most suitable areas, such as the north-eastern tip of the island.
The Gallura region has a terroir or rather a combination of weather, soil, and natural conditions that are very favorable for the production of quality wine. It has a mild and temperate climate that provides plants with the right amount of light and heat, and it has a regular and salty wind that helps keep the vines healthy. Furthermore, Gallura has a “thin” soil that is not too rich in nutrients but is light and permeable, because it is granitic, with clay and sandy components. These physical and chemical characteristics allow for the cultivation of grapes that produce fine, elegant, and refined wines.
It is on this terroir that, at the end of the nineteenth century, the story of Cantina Pedres began and of a family, ours, begins. Our family transformed the winemaking tradition and the uniqueness of this land into the ingredients for producing authentic Gallura wines. We passionately take care of every aspect of the process, from the plant to the bottle. For this reason, we cultivate our grapes on 40 hectares of our property, and we have chosen to plant mainly typical Sardinian vines such as Vermentino and Cannonau. These varieties are so iconic of Sardinia that they represent more than 40% of all the vineyard hectares on the island. We have also planted two of the most widespread varieties of grapes in Italy, Sangiovese and Moscato Bianco, and international ones, such as Cabernet, Merlot, Sirah, and Muller Thurgau, alongside our Sardinian varieties. When poured in the glass, these different grapes will reflect all that the terroir of Gallura can offer
As we believe that true quality wine is born in the vineyard before being produced in the cellar, we continuously monitor and support the life cycle of our vines, season after season and year after year. We care for our vines with love and attention in order to guarantee both excellent grapes and a healthy relationship between the plants, the soil, and the environment. The story of our wines begins in the vineyards, where our relationship with the land is rooted along with our approach to winemaking that we put in every bottle.
Wine has a life cycle: it is created by soil and human ingenuity, and it goes through childhood, maturity and old age. Some wines can live for decades and other for a lot less, and this is decided by the winemaking techniques used to create it, how it is preserved and how it is aged.
In general terms, the wines that give their best while “young” become ready in a single phase, which takes place in airtight containers – like the steel tanks used in Cantina Pedres. Longer-lived wines, on the other hand, usually spend time in wood barrels and then are left to age in the bottle. By doing so oxygen is first added and then subtracted, achieving a structured and surprising flavour. This is what happens, for example, for some of our reds, which spend up to 9 months in French oak barrels, giving them a refined smoothness: Cerasio Cannonau, Muros IGT and the Cagnulari of the Antonella Collection.
Broadly speaking, red wines spend time in wood containers much more often that whites do, but what determines this choice is the result that one wants to achieve: in time wood releases tannic substances to the wine that give it a more complex, nuanced taste, so this the true deciding factor when it is time to go forward. Among the whites that spend time in French oak barrels the new Vermentino of the Antonella Collection stands out, since the 5 months it spends in wood barrels before ageing in bottle give it a remarkable aromatic note.
Furthermore, wine, oxygen and wood also share another point of intersection in the stopper, which is traditionally made from the bark of cork oaks – to the point that “cork” has become a synonym for it. Cork protects wine from an excess of oxygen and from other external agents very effectively, and also guarantees, thanks to micro-oxygenation, a constant evolution.
In Cantina Pedres we use stoppers made of natural cork, which guarantee a constant evolution of wines. In some cases, to safeguard even more the preservation of our wines, we also use DIAM stoppers. These stoppers represent a technological evolution of corks: they are the product of a natural innovation that has allowed for the creation of a technical cork closure that protects wine from sensory alteration – particularly TCA, the molecule responsible for the notorius cork taint.