Contadi Castaldi

Contadi Castaldi opened in Franciacorta in 1987, an offshoot of the Terra Moretti group, headed by founder Vittorio Moretti, who realized that this area offers the ideal conditions for producing great sparkling wine.

Following the success of Bellavista, the group conducted intensive research on the distinctive characteristics of Franciacorta, introducing innovations that were to make Contadi Castaldi a leader in the production of Satèn, a particular type of wine from Franciacorta. Founded ten years after Bellavista, Contadi Castaldi  has greatly differentiated its production of sparkling wines, focusing on innovation and a younger target market. This inspired the winery to produce other wines featuring freshness, elegance and distinctive local qualities.

The company currently produces about 750,000 bottles of wine a year, made from prized grapes gathered from over 100 hectares of vineyards, located in areas that once corresponded to the counties (contadi) of Franciacorta, which were controlled by the local lord, the steward (castaldo). Contadi Castaldi is run along entirely different lines from the other wineries in Franciacorta. It has multi-year agreements with forty or so local vine-growers, who are supervised by a team of technical experts, from the planting of the vine to the hand harvesting of the grapes. The main advantage of this is being able to make best use of the micro climates, giving base wines different features that provide the cuvées with more complexity. These are superb wines that offer remarkable value in the world of sparkling Franciacorta.

Franciacorta Rose

Produced from Chardonnay (65%), Pinot Nero (35%). Fermentation occurs for 20 days in stainless tanks with Partial malolactic fermentation. Soft pressing with selected yeast inoculation. Refinement for 7 months in both stainless and in barriques. Alcohol 13%

Reviews:

"You’ll love the soft and subtle way this light pink sparkler spreads throughout the mouth. A sensation of plush volume is backed by creamy foam and delicate tones of wild berry, pink grapefruit and freshly baked bread." ~ 90, Wine Enthusiast August 2013

Price: (6 packs) Fl $108.00, 2cs $102.00, 4cs $96.00, 6cs $92.00
 
Franciacorta Brut

Starting with 15 year old vines from the Fraciacorta region, the grapes are harvested in late August and or early September. The vinification process starts with soft pressing followed by a cold static settling. Afterwards the juice is innoculated selectively followed by a 20 day long fermentation process in stainless steel tanks. Finally the juice undergoes partial malolactic frementation then is moved into both barriques and stainless steel tanks for a refinement period of 7 months. Produced from Chardonnay (80%), Pinot Nero (10%), Pinot Bianco (10%). Alcohol 12.5%

Reviews:

"The NV Franciacorta Brut is a delicious wine with a great level of energy and freshness. If you are looking for a classic expression of Italian sparkling wine from Franciacorta, this is your wine. It presents a tonic mouthfeel with steely effervescence and a clean, pristine finish. This is a fresh and lively sparkler that delivers great energy and personality. The blend is 80% Chardonnay, 10% Pinot Nero and 10% Pinot Bianco.

 

Contadi Castaldi makes some of my favorite Franciacorta sparkling wines. I highly recommend them. The wines boast an especially creamy and opulent style that sets them apart from their peers. That richness is achieved with moderate use of oak, a strong focus on Chardonnay and prolonged lees aging. I also must underline that these are some of the most reasonably priced wines you can find in the generally overpriced Franciacorta appellation." ~ 90, Wine Advocate September 2015

 

"Bright lemon and lime citrus mingle with underripe peach and lofty spice character. Creamy and smooth with generous bubbles, tart with hints of almond on the finish." ~ The Sommelier Journal, December/January 2015/2016

Price: (6 packs) Fl $108.00, 2cs $102.00, 4cs $96.00, 6cs $92.00
 
Vintage Franciacorta Rose

Produced from Pinot Nero (65%), Chardonnay (35%). Fermentation occurs for 20 days in stainless tanks with Partial malolactic fermentation. Soft pressing with selected yeast inoculation. Refinement for 7 months in both stainless and in barriques. Alcohol 13%.

Reviews:

"Very pretty rose and copper color. Aromas of peaches and apples. Some strawberry too. Full body with a fine, creamy texture and a long, flavorful finish. A fruity yet subtle rosé sparkling wine. Drink now." ~ 93, James Suckling,

 

"The 2008 Franciacorta Brut Rose offers a beautifully delicate bouquet and a delicately pale pink color to match. The wine offers a full range of aromas that include baked baguette, dried cranberry, lemon zest, blanched almond and pink grapefruit. The balanced acidity gives the wine a bright personality, but there’s enough structure on the close to drive the long finish. Drink: 2014-2020." ~ 91, Wine Advocate December 2013

Price: (6pks) Fl $140, 4cs $120
 
Franciacorta Satèn

GRAPES: Chardonnay 100%
WINE YIELD: 65% or 65 HL per hectare
AVERAGE AGE OF VINES: 15 years
VINIFICATION: Soft pressing. Cold settling. Inoculation with selected yeast. Fermentation of 20 days in stainless steel AISI 316. Partial malolactic fermentation.
FIRST AGEING: 7 months, partly in steel and partly in barriques
AGEING ON THE LEES: From 30 to 36 months

Reviews:
Price: Fl $140.00, 4cs $120.00
 
Vintage Franciacorta Zero Dosage

A Franciacorta consisting of a selection of Pinot nero grapes from a specific morainic soil that gives the grape its full-bodied flavour, which carries over well to the wine. During the vinifiaction process the wine ferments for 20 days inside of stainless steel containers, and is then aged for seven months partly in steel and partly in barriques. This process gives the wine its very precise flavor, complex bouquet, with hints of grapefruit, blackcurrant, walnut hull, and unusual traces of laurel and green tobacco.

Reviews:
Price: (6 packs) Fl $160.00, 2cs $140.00