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BINOMIO

ABRUZZO



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ABOUT THE WINERY

Among Abruzzo’s great treasures are the large national parks and wilderness areas in its segment of the Apennine Mountains. Above it all, the mighty massifs of Majella and Gran Sasso, with the highest peaks of the Apennines, rule the skyline. The lower elevations of the mountains share the beauty, pristine air, bright sunshine, and large diurnal temperature excursions of the higher parklands, with warmer overall climates that are more suitable for agriculture. Vineyards have been planted here and there in the foothills of Abruzzo over time, even though they are not suitable for the high-volume production that was more typical in the second half of the 20th century. 

One such vineyard was planted in 1971 in the vicinity of San Valentino in Abruzzo Citeriore, not far from Majella National Park. The 10-acre vineyard, with a southern exposure at an elevation of about 1,200 feet, was planted with Abruzzo’s all-encompassing red grape variety, Montepulciano—but of an unusual subtype. The Montepulciano vines were a more flavorful but less prolific biotype that had two lobes, one half the size of the other. These oddly shaped bunches were reminiscent of the shape of the continent of Africa and came to be dubbed the “Africa clone.” 

In 2000, the vineyard was purchased to become the basis for the Binomio project. Stefano Inama of Azienda Agricola Inama and Sabatino Di Properzio of Fattoria La Valentina had met three years earlier, struck up a friendship, and decided to partner in the development of a great Montepulciano d’Abruzzo wine. They did some preliminary trials in the 1998 and 1999 vintages before finding the Africa clone vineyard in San Valentino. The vineyard had gone through several owners in three decades due to its low productivity, but the small-berried, low-yield bunches proved to be just what they needed to make a sumptuous, modern Montepulciano d’Abruzzo with mature tannins that was ready to be drunk right away rather than needing additional cellaring or decanting.

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WINERY LOCATION: Fattoria La Valentina, Spoltore, Abruzzo
REGION: Montepulciano d’Abruzzo DOC
VINEYARD LAND: 10 acres (4 ha)
FARMING PRACTICES: Sustainable
GRAPE VARIETIES: Montepulciano
WINE STYLES: Dry red
TOTAL WINE PRODUCTION: 13,000 bottles (9,750 liters)
YEAR FOUNDED: 1998
OWNER(S): Stefano Inama and Sabatino Di Properzio
WINEMAKER(S): Stefano & Matteo Inama

WINES

BINOMIO MONTEPULCIANO D'ABRUZZO DOC

Binomio is a joint venture in Abruzzo between Inama and Fattoria La Valentina, begun in 1998. Together, the two wineries farm a parcel of old-vines Montepulciano in a beautiful location in the foothills north of Majella National Park. The property is planted with an ancient biotype of Montepulciano called the “Africa clone” because its two lobes, one longer than the other, give its bunches the shape of the African continent if they are held just right. This biotype was abandoned long ago by most Montepulciano producers due to its low productivity, but that same characteristic gives the wine great body and concentration. Today, it is unofficially known as he "Binomio" clone.

LOCATION


WINERY:
Fattoria La Valentina, Spoltore, Abruzzo

VINEYARD:
San Valentino in Abruzzo Citeriore (Pescara province), Abruzzo

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NEWS AND REVIEWS FROM OUR FRIENDS IN THE INDUSTRY



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95
JUNE 2023
Binomio Montepulciano d'Abruzzo DOC 2019

An intriguing nose of red berries, decadent red apples, dried tobacco, roses and rich earth. Medium- to full-bodied with perfectly integrated tannins that create a lightly velvety underlay for the bright fruit and spice flavors that push through the long, long finish. Few reds from the montepulciano grape are able to offer this degree of complexity, combined with light-footed elegance and balance. Exquisite. Benchmark. Drink or hold.

93
OCTOBER 2023
Binomio Montepulciano d'Abruzzo DOC 2018

The 2018 Montepulciano d’Abruzzo Riserva Binomio is hauntingly dark and floral, seducing with its rich mix of grilled herbs, plum sauce and dark chocolate. It floods the palate with medium-weight textures and polished red and black fruits, yet beneath is a core of salty minerals and lively acidity that adds both depth and energy to the experience. Lightly structured and wonderfully refined, this tapers off with length, leaving inner violet florals and a bitter twang of currant to linger through the otherwise-juicy finale. Binomio, a collaboration between Inama (Veneto) and La Valentina (Abruzzo), nailed the 2018 vintage. It could use some time to soften a bit through the finish and for its aromatics to evolve; but otherwise, this is already irresistible today.

93
SEPTEMBER 2023
Binomio Montepulciano d'Abruzzo DOC 2020

Ripe plush dark fruit with lots of cocoa beans, mussel, dark spices and hazelnuts. Really flavorful and fleshy on the round, full-bodied palate with a mouthful of lush, silky tannins and a long, creamy finish. Quite a hedonistic Montepulciano d’ Abruzzo to enjoy in the next six years. Drink from 2024.

93
NOVEMBER 2022
Binomio Montepulciano d'Abruzzo DOC 2018

Fresh dill and thyme lend a heady dose of herb to the plump black cherry and blackberry core in this red. It’s polished and full in nature, with rounded cherry and plum flavors meeting cohesive accents of clove, fresh herbs and cigar wrapper. Anise and grippy cherry skins linger on the finish.

92
MARCH 2020
Binomio Montepulciano d'Abruzzo DOC 2015

Intense garnet color and dense blackberry nose; velvety and deep; meaty and juicy with concentration and generous flavors. It's made with an ancient biotype of Montepulciano called the African clone due to the shape of its bunches.

92
OCTOBER 2021
Binomio Montepulciano d'Abruzzo DOC 2016

This luxe red blends tones of brandy-soaked cherries and blackberries with heady doses of mentholated tobacco, clove and cured meat. Smooth, creamy tannins and bright acidity yield a full-bodied palate that is rounded and polished. It's accessible now but should hold well through 2028

93
JUNE 2024
Binomio Montepulciano d'Abruzzo DOC 2021

Broad and complex red with a velvety texture and good length. Dark berries, cooking spices, mocha, chocolate, nutmeg and earth on the nose. Full-bodied and structured with velvety tannins. Firm and dry at the end. Needs some time to soften. Try after 2026.

91
FEBRUARY 2024
Binomio Montepulciano d'Abruzzo DOC 2019

A dark, juicy red, with notes of fresh loamy earth underscoring rich flavors of dried raspberry and cranberry fruit, revealing chocolate-covered orange peel, brambly herb and smoke accents. Medium- to full-bodied, with chewy tannins firming the zesty finish. Drink now through 2029. 1,000 cases made, 300 cases imported.