The wines of AA Panevino   
Sensational natural wines from Sardinia, Italy

Gianfranco Manca was a baker. He’d taken over his uncle’s bakery, but with the bakery came some plots of rather neglected old bush vines. Manca fancied trying his hand with winemaking (after all, yeast is common to both bread and wine), and in addition to restoring the old vines he planted some new vines.

Panevino translates ‘bread wine’, and in 2005 Manca released the first wines from this new project, based on 5 hectares of vines. The vines are farmed naturally, with just a bit of sulphur used for mildew prevention, and no fertlilizers. Winemaking is done very naturally. The wines are simply brilliant.

Alvas Bianco 2008 Sardinia
A blend of Retallada, Nurasas, Vernaccia, Semiano, Malvasia and Nasco, grown on schist soils and given a lengthy maceration (18 days). This is a thrilling white wine that combines power and elegance. Orange colour. Warm, spicy, rich and lovely with citrus peel notes on the nose. The palate is powerful with good acid, grippy tannins and flavours of pear, spice and nuts. Finishes dry. Lovely wine. 93/100

Tankadeddu Rosso 2008 Sardinia
From young vines; Canonau, Monica and Carignan. Lovely sweet nose is pure with powerful dark cherry fruit. Very stylish. The palate is hauntingly elegant with pure, sweet, beguiling fruit. Light but flavourful, with a smooth texture. 94/100

UK agent: Les Caves de Pyrene. Approximate retail prices £25 for white, £18 for red.

Wines tasted 04/10  
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