Savuto •Odoardi Estate
What We Say
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Mission Codename: The Philosopher’s Wine
Operative: Agent Red
Objective: Find the best Savuto wines in Italy
Mission Status: Primary Mission Accomplished, Ongoing
Current Winery: Odoardi
Wine Subject: 2004 Odoardi Savuto
Mission Report: This was a simple mission, and while it was very straightforward, it still held plenty of intrigue. At least for this spy – as fascinated with the history of wine as I am.
Praised by the great philosophers Strabo and Pliny the Elder, this ancient Italian varietal was known to these Latin speakers as, “Sanutum”, which meant “healthy” or “sane”. Savuto is just about as old-world as it gets and when I set out to find the greatest ones I could find, I had no doubt that I would find it at the 5 century-old vineyards of Odoardi, in the southern Italian region of Calabria.
The Odoardi country estate, situated in the province of è Catanzaro in the communes of Nocera Trinese and Falema, produces Savuto DOC wines, Scavigna DOC wine and olive oil. The vineyards here are farmed by brothers Gregorio and Govambattista Odoardi.
When I toured the estate and saw the slopes where the Savuto grapes are grown something struck me as odd; All of the other types of vineyards in Calabria grew on the hills which sloped toward the sea, exposed either to the Ionian Sea to the east or toward the Tyrrhenian Sea to the west. These Savuto grapes grow on slopes that descend from the mountains to the banks of the Savuto River.
Favored, also, by Roman nobles such as Cirò and Greco, Savuto was often found at most important feasts in the imperial capital. Love for this wine has never declined over the prevailing centuries and the wine is still praised. In recent years, it is acknowledged that Savuto quality has been on the raise. In the hands of master growers, the brothers Odoardi, and master winemaker Stefano Chioccioli, the Savuto made here is a product of perfect harmony.
This is a fabulous wine with a great deal of charm, character, flavor and history!
Stefano Chioccioli is a master winemaker of remarkable pedigree and renown. After graduating cum laude, Stefano Chioccioli used his degree in agriculture as a springboard to obtaining certification as an Agrogolist and later as an Oenologist from the University of Bordeaux in France.
From 1985 to 1991, Chioccioli worked for the Winegrowers House Chianti Ruffino S.p.A. In this seven year period, he worked for a year at the Pontassieve Plant as a wine taster while also carrying out oenological-chemical tests, analysis of the agrarian ground. After the first year of his employ, he was charged with the overall technical viticultural Direction of Ruffino.
Today Chioccioli works as a consulting winemaker to some of the most prestigious wine houses in Italy and France. Of winemaking, he says:
The elements of my work begin from the viticulture; my approach to the wine world begins from a viticultural approach. Viticulture represents the elements of the qualitative production.
When I begin a project, I always think to the target I must reach depending on the territory, where I’m working. The main target is to find the balance between the originality of the territory, expressed through its podiatric and climatic characteristic, and the technical culture that I bring about the territory.
The most important target of the viticulture is to obtain a perfect grapes ripening. This idea, seemingly so simple, is in fact a very ambitious target.
Wine Spies Tasting Profile:
Look – Rich, deep garnet and purple plum
Smell – Big body with ample aromatics of floral, fresh mulch and mineral notes
Feel – Smooth and large in the mouth, with medium mid-pallet tannins
Taste – Complex flavors of sweet overripe plum, mineral, tart cherry and sourgrass
Finish – Long and lingering with raisin and plum flavors that stay with you for a long while
Conclusion – This full bodied wine is delightfully complex, while still easy-drinking. Savuto is an interesting varietal with a rich history and tons of character. This is a wine that is equally suited to a romantic dinner or a spirited conversation.
Wine Spies Vineyard Check:
The Vineyard can be seen in this satellite photo
Pairing: A wine like this is wonderful to drink on its own, but we paired ours with a simple spaghetti with fresh basil, garlic and tomato sauce. This old world wine, when combined with a easy dinner under the Calabrian stars, transported me to another time. I can’t wait to go back again.
What the Winery Says
Gambero Rosso awarded its prestigious Tre Bicchieri award to our Vigna Garrone this year (2007) and had this to say about our Odoardi Estate:
“Odoardi is one of the most historical names of the Southern Italian wine world. The family has owned the 270 hectares of the beautiful estate located near the village of Nocera Torinese for more than 5 centuries and has always produced wine there. Until the first half of the last century, the estate produce the regions typical, high alcohol wines which were sold in bulk. But, in the last decade, thanks to the new generation of owners, brothers Gregorio and Govambattista Odoardi, the wines are now of the highest quality. The enthusiasm of the Odoardi brothers in combination with the experience of winemaker, stefano Chiccioli, has created a perfect harmony”