Our 2011 Il Donato Vino Rosso is ruby red in color with rich aromas of blackberries, dates, a hint of black pepper and dark plum. Flavors of blueberry, tart cherry, pomegranate seed and an earthy minerality are carried by subtle notes of cocoa nibs through the finish. Soft, long and intensely flavored, this wine has a classic old-world terroir. Our Vino Rosso is sourced primarily from Puglia which has a dry Mediterranean climate, with moderately loose clay soils producing fine dry wine. Medium-bodied and tightly structured this Vino Rosso will pair nicely with osso buco, agnello e patate al forno (roasted lamb and potatoes) or baked eggplant lasagna.
At the crossroads between Rome and Greece, the people of the region of Puglia in Italy have been growing grapes and making wine for more than 4,000 years. Unlike much of the rest of the mountainous country, Puglia is relatively flat, consisting mostly of hill and plains. The climate of the area is influenced by its proximity to the Adriatic and Ionian seas, which have a tempering effect on the weather and produce ideal conditions for growing grapes. While the region has been making wine for four millennia, until recently, the rest of the world has had very little exposure to the wines of the region. That is changing, however, and Puglia is going through a winemaking revolution, with an influx of new winemakers, new technologies, and new ideas. Today, the region is viewed as one that can produce excellent wines at an affordable price. The Il Donato Vino Rosso is from the Puglia IGT appellation.
The 2011 vintage in Puglia was remarkable. A late winter and a wet spring had winemakers in the area nervously tending their vines. Significant weather changes occured in July, however, when the area experienced one of the legendary heat waves that Puglia is famous for—10 days in excess of 100°F. The weather stayed warm well through harvest, leading to a very special vintage. Many winemakers of the area consider it to be the best vintage in over 30 years, and while the yields were low, the quality was exceptional.
In 1895, our great grandfather—Samuele Sebastiani—came to Sonoma, California, from Italy. He brought with him Il Donato the gift of hard work and the love of wine and food. These were the building blocks upon which the Sebastiani winemaking tradition in Sonoma was built. Our Il Donato wines are crafted in tribute to the humble, yet highly satisfying, table wines that originally inspired Samuele to pursue his life's passion.