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.
Montefalco Sagrantino from the Pagliaro vineyard is Paolo Bea's flagship wine. It is made entirely of organically-grown Sagrantino. The grapes are harvested by hand in the latter half of October and undergo an extended (40-day) maceration on the grape skins using only natural yeasts for fermentation. Afterwards, the wine is aged in stainless steel followed by 2 years in large, used Slavonian oak casks. The wine is then bottled, unfined and unfiltered, where it rests for an additional year prior to release.
It’s about 4-1/2 years from grape harvest to release of the wine, an extended and expensive vinification and ageing regimen but one consistent with Bea’s philosophy of letting the wine speak for itself and not trying to rush the wine to market before its ready.
Like the other Bea wines, this is a dark, brooding beast. Being 100% Sagrantino, the Pagliaro is a supremely structured wine. Inky and chewy with heaps of dark fruit, this is easily a 30 year wine if stored properly.
Enjoy it after a long decant with hearty meat dishes and strong cheeses.