What are distillates?
The first premise to make is that distillates are neither bitters nor liqueurs. They are alcoholic drinks obtained from the fermentation of raw materials of vegetable origin, such as cereals, wine, roots or fruit, in which water and alcohol are subsequently separated by means of stills, in the so-called distillation phase.
The distillates usually have an alcohol content of over 40° and are detected by a low presence of sugars (maximum 2%). In most cases caramel is used, but almost exclusively to give the drink a warmer colour.
To distinguish the different types of distillate are the raw materials, as well as the distillation technique used and the aging:
Grappa is a unique distillate of its kind, because it is produced starting from a solid material. So how is grappa made? The main ingredient is the pomace, i.e. the skins of the grapes.
a peculiar characteristic of grappa is that it must necessarily be vinified and distilled in Italy and exclusively with Italian grapes. For this reason it is one of the distillates of pride of our country, like the "barricata" variant, which requires aging for at least half of the time in barrique.
Sant'Andrea a Gavignalla, a hamlet of Gambassi Terme (Florence-Tuscany) in vineyards with an age ranging from 50 to 10 years.
The vineyard is located at an altitude of 170-200 m a.s.l., on hills with steep slopes (27-29%) and facing south-west. Deep soil, quite calcareous and rich in salinity. The climate is sub-Mediterranean with hot summers and fairly cold winters, and with marine influence. Average rainfall (904 mm per year) with maximum in November/December and minimum in July/August. The minimum and maximum temperature from veraison to harvest is 8-34°C in August, 9-30°C in September and 12-27°C in October.
Inverted Guyot and Tuscan bow.
Plant density and yield
3.300-4.800 vines/Ha, 7.5 t/Ha.
Approximately from 20 September to 10 October with manual harvesting in 20 kg baskets.
Average analytical data
Alcohol 14.5% vol. pH 3.60, total acidity 5.0 g/l.
30°C with storage in a cool place avoiding sudden changes in temperature.