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The vines for ‘Le Tense’ come from 20 acres of vineyards in the top Sassella subzones of Minè, Longini and Chiesa Sassella which are home to some of Valtellina’s oldest vineyards. Situated at above 1,200 feet above sea level, the terraced vineyards are made up of shallow, stony soils. Vines are very densely planted and yields are kept to a minimum. Harvested by hand at the end of October, the grape bunches were vinified on the skins in special temperature-controlled vats and maceration lasted 5 days. In December, after a period in steel vats, two thirds of the wine was transferred into small, second use barrels for 24 months, and then bottled.
The name ‘Le Tense’ derives from the period when Valtellina was under the control of the Swiss ‘Three Grey Legions’ (1512-1797). The best vineyards were ‘tense’; protected by the guardians of the vines, known as the ‘arbostrari’. 89 points – Wine Spectator