In the north of Sardegna, Carlo Deperu and his wife Tatiana Holler are crafting some of the most serious whites of the Mediterranean basin. The couple met in Milan, where Carlo earned his degree in viticulture and enology while Tatiana had come to study advertising from her native Brazil. In 2005, they settled back to Carlo’s hometown of Perfugas, where his family had long made some wine for their own consumption. Carlo and Tatiana replanted the family vineyards and added new parcels, ultimately bringing the surface under vine to six hectares.
At the intersection of the hilly Anglona region and the more mountainous Gallura (home to Sardegna’s only DOCG, Vermentino di Gallura), soils alternate between limestone and granite with varying proportions of clay, chalk, and fossil-rich stones. Situated less than ten miles away, the sea brings constant fresh breezes, while nearby Lake Coghinas also has a similar moderating effect. The cleansing maestrale wind blows frequently, playing a crucial role in facilitating organic viticulture. In fact, Carlo and Tatiana eschew herbicides and synthetic fertilizers in the vineyard, opting instead for natural solutions like planting cover crops to maintain balance in the soils.
This vermentino undergoes a 3-4 day cold soak to extract texture and aroma. In the process the extended skin contact does extract a very slightly pale “eye of the partridge (oeil de perdrix)” blush, and slightly chalky “tannin”. The fermentations is natural and the malolactic fermentation occurs in tank before an unfined, unfiltered bottling.
Vermentino thrives here, giving aromatic, mineral-driven wines that rank among the Mediterranean’s most complex and food-friendly whites. “Fria” is a mouth-watering, almost salty, delightfully thirst-quenching expression of the grape.