AND CLIMATIC FRAMEWORK
Geological substrate: LAMINATED SANT’AGATA FOSSIL MARL in transition to SANDY SANT’AGATA FOSSIL MARL; 8 million years old (TORTONIAN STAGE).
The vineyards that produce this cru are located in the upper and intermediate parts of the Rocche dell’Annunziata sub-zone. Here the marls are interspersed with frequent sandy strata, which increase as the hill climbs up towards the ridge which ends at the Frazione Annunziata hamlet. Two different areas therefore make up the cru: the more marly upper section, and the more sandy medium-low section.
Soil: WHITE, CLAYEY SILT LOAM, CALCAREOUS, YOUNG.
The soil shows the combination of marl and sand that results in a high clay component inherited from the marl, along with a sandy fraction which is significant for the vine. As a result, the soil expresses a marked capacity for water retention, and at the same time softness and aeration thanks to the sand. Its light colour is a sign of a young soil which has not been greatly affected by evolution. The shallowness of the soil is due to the sloping conditions that do not allow it to accumulate.
Climate and topographical framework: SOUTHERLY aspect; 300 – 380 m a.s.l.; gradient of c.22%.
The vineyards are distributed over the extensive hillside that slopes down from La Morra towards the outlying hamlet of Annunziata. Stretching out opposite the Rocche is the ridge that hosts the Brunate cru, providing protection from the strongest winds, and generating a very special microclimate which – in combination with its intermediate altitude and sunny exposure – is hard to find elsewhere in the Barolo growing area. The vine therefore finds itself located in an exceptional ecosystem characterized by soil rich in clay but lightened by sand, along with a hot and moderately well-ventilated microclimate. As a result, growth is extremely regular, from bud break right through to the ripening which is the phase that benefits most from the happy soil-climate combination.
By Edmondo Bonelli, naturalist