Danilo Thomain 2020 Enfer d'Arvier, Vallee d'Aoste DOC

Danilo Thomain 2020 Enfer d'Arvier, Vallee d'Aoste DOC

Item Number: 17072

UPC: None

Country: Italy
Region: Valle d'Aosta
Sub Region: Valle d'Aosta
Appellation/AVA: Valle d'Aosta DOC
Estate Grown Wine: Yes
Vintage: 2020
Grape(s): 90% Petit Rouge / 10% Pinot Noir, Gamay, Gamaret
Type: Wine - Red
Bottle Size: 750 ml
Pack: 12
Closure: Cork
Alc by Vol(%): 13
Soil Type: Sandy glacial moraines
Case Production: 429

Winemaking Notes: Harvest is entirely manual and usually in early October. After total destemming, the grapes ferment spontaneously in fiberglass and stainless steel tanks. Cuvaison lasts around 2 weeks. The wine see pump overs during cuvaison. The wine spends 9 months on its lees. Malolactic fermentation occurs spontaneously in stainless steel tanks. The wine is bottled unfined and unfiltered. Sulfites are applied after malolactic and at bottling.

Tasting Notes: An essay in extremes, Danilo’s Enfer d’Arvier is both bracing in its freshness and intense in its concentration. Rapier-like acidity pulls firmly at the reins of muscular, thickly luscious fruit gained from the blistering heat these perfectly angled vineyards absorb under full sun, and the wine is indeed never deficient in ripeness. As a recently consumed bottle from 2008 attested, this wine can age, and age beautifully.

About the Label: One of the first questions people tend to ask about the wine is inevitably, “What’s the story with that label?” Certainly, the crude illustration of a trident-wielding demon clutching a bottle stands out in any context, and it’s tempting to chalk it up to quirkiness. However, while we often associate the Alps with clean air, pure water, and industrious inhabitants, those massive mountains harbor a profound darkness—one which suffuses local lore. Stories abound of monsters that lurk in the region’s impenetrable forests, demons who dwell far below the surface of the rock, spiritual descendants of the geological violence which created the very terrain itself millennia ago. The 1980s-era precursor to the current label is an even more blatantly evil depiction of hellfire and angry ghouls—basically, a heavy metal album cover glued to a bottle of wine. And even the old pre-1960s label shows a makeshift chorus line of cavorting skeletons and assorted unsavory spirits. This darkness is just as much a part of Alpine life as the beautiful vistas and clean atmosphere, and Thomain’s label attests to that in bold, irresistible fashion. Furthermore, it captures the dual nature of the wine itself—a liquid both invigoratingly vibrant and broodingly savory, one that expresses all the teeming life above the Alpine soil as well as the unknowable depths which lie below.