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First release from French-Italian joint venture in Maremma

Castellare di Castellina owner Piero Panerai and Eric de Rothschild have launched the first wine from their joint-owned Tuscan estate.

The 500ha Rocca di Frassinello estate is a €20m investment. Bought in 1999, the Maremma estate has 80ha of vines – the owners intend to extend the vineyard capacity to 125ha.

The state of the art cellar was been designed by Italy’s top architect Renzo Piano – whose most famous building is the Centre Pompidou in Paris.

The first wine to be released is the Poggio alla Guardia 2004, an entry level blend of Sangiovese, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. It was made by the Castellare winemaker Alessandro Cellai, together with Christian Le Sommer, winemaker at Domaines Barons de Rothschild.

Production is expected to reach 100,000 when the winery is working at capacity.

A second label, Le Sughere di Frassinello 2004, a similar blend, will be released later this month.

Then there is the ‘grand vin’, Rocca di Frassinello 2004, aged in new French oak with a bottle run of around 45,000 going up to 100,000 at capacity.

Written by Michele Shah

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