2016 Mario Schiopetto M Friulano Collio DOC

2016 Mario Schiopetto M Friulano Collio DOC

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A past Wine Access story about 2016 Mario Schiopetto M Friulano Collio DOC

Italy’s Greatest White Wine

This is a truly special Wine Access exclusive — a seriously valid contender for Italy’s greatest white wine. Schiopetto estate produces critically-acclaimed head-turners and this Mario Schiopetto “M” takes it one step further — this special cuvée is only produced in the best vintages, and the 2016 “M” landed on James Suckling’s Top 100 Wines of the World (2017) with a whopping 98 points — the highest equal score he has ever given for an Italian white! Suckling raved of its “full body, dense and powerful,” form calling it “one of Italy's top whites.” From 64-year-old vines rooted on south-facing slopes of the Capriva Cru in Collio, a sub-region of Friuli-Venezia-Giulia, this is an Italian Friulano at the pinnacle of brilliance. A mere 113 cases were produced for the entire world. We secured 84 bottles — the only U.S. allocation. Do not miss out on this.

There is a grainy black-and-white photo of ten well-dressed men, taken circa 1970, that looks like it could be in the card room at an Elks’ Lodge. The subjects are giants of Italian wine, bearing the noblest names and representing the most famed producers in Italy: Antinori, Ceretto, Gaja, Biondi Santi. Most of these stalwarts produced Italy’s most iconic reds, but the bespectacled titan in the middle crafted a game-changing still white. That man is Mario Schiopetto, and his eponymous estate continues to produce some of Northern Italy’s most iconic white wines.

It may sound strange, but the late Mario Schiopetto owed his immense knowledge of Friuli’s diverse terroir to his days as a truck driver — when he traversed the epicenter of Italy’s fine white wine region, cataloguing memories. As a winemaker he embraced French viticultural canons and German technology (cold-fermentation and stainless steel aging), which spurred the “Schiopetto Style.” It was this marriage of tradition and innovation for which Mario would become known, in Friuli and well beyond, after he first bottled “Tocai” from his now-esteemed Capriva estate in 1965.

Schiopetto continues Mario’s work by utilizing modern technology in concert with traditional techniques to bring forth the magic of their 75 acres in Collio and Friuli. The grapes in the 2016 “M” Friulano — affectionately called “Il Mario” at the winery — were all hand-picked in the first week of September. After careful selection of yeasts, the wine undergoes a temperature controlled cold fermentation, followed by nine months of aging on fine lees, before a delicate fining and bottling, where it rests an additional six months.

Right now, this most-impressive of Italian whites is ready to ship, direct from the winery — in perfection condition and provenance — straight to your door.  

Adam Lapierre MW

Master of Win

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