Paolo Bea is to Montefalco as Biondi Santi is to Montalcino and Gaja to Piemonte. Bea's wines are the most coveted from the Montefalco region. Like Gaja, Bea produces wines in "his" style, take it or leave it. There are a great many fans of the Paolo Bea style that "take it" as evidenced by the scarcity of his wines.
The Montefalco Rosso Riserva "Piparello" consists of 60% Sangiovese, 25% Montepulciano, and 15% Historic varietals of the Montefalco region.
Alcohol content: 15%
Fermentation and maceration skins: from 30 to 40 days
Wine maturation: at least 12 months in stainless
steel barrels, from 24 to 36 months in large Slavonian oak barrels, at least 12 months in bottle
The Pipparello is overwhelmingly brooding, and intense in its concentration. The ultra-savory nose is a thick swamp of camphor, black olives, fresh tar, and sandalwood, with pretty high-toned spices lurking in the background. Its palate is arrestingly dense, yet it carries an incredible amount of energy given its overall disposition. This is a rough-and-tumble, wholly uncompromising wine without a polite bone in its body, yet it still manages to be erudite and nuanced—an embodiment of the spirit of the Bea style at its most extreme.