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Il Cancelliere

Il Cancelliere is all about Family. Claudio runs the business, although he also works full time for a telecoms firm as a senior manager. He races to the office Italian style at 150 km/h at 6 am, does a full day, running 7 km at lunch, returns home at 160 km/h making calls to his importers around the world while negotiating the truly bonkers Italian motorways and sipping from a take away coffee. The guy is all energy, pocket sized, talks at 200 km/h and is a great guy to boot! He became wine maker by default, Cancelliere is his Wife's family name and the small 5 hectare estate have been in her family for many generations. Like many small growers in Irpinia, up until quite recently they sold the grapes to larger wineries like Feudi di San Gregorio but when Claudio came along, they started to think about producing their own wine. The vineyards have always been organic, it has always been their way, so natural production was a given. The vineyards are simply stunning, over looking the Valley of Irpinia on the slopes below the small town of Montemarano. The vineyards are about 350 metres above sea level, some of the wines are around 40 - 50 years old with the oldest in the Taurasi vineyard being nearer 80 years. They grow only Aglianico, working the land by hand with a small (knackered) tractor and Signor 'Il Cancelliere' Claudio's father in law (now in his mid 70s) still the main vineyard worker. Claudio's sister in law helps sort the orders and organise the cellar and his wife helps run the office (oh and she works too, who ever said they don't work in the south!). Cancelliere is Aglianico as nature intended, rich and full bodied, tannic and full of gutsy, earthy flavours. They rarely add any sulphur with the all 3 wines being around 15-20 mg/l total sulphur. The wines are open and alive although Aglianico is a beast of a grape and needs time to temper its aggressive and animalistic character. The 2007 Taurasi is just starting to show its true style and deliciousness. Now nearly all gone. Gioviano 2011 is dry, but ready and very very tasty. Try these wines, they are honest and reassuringly rustic reflections of the wine of Campania.