Exploring the Maremma: Bulichella

“Tuscany is a land with fertile soils and beautiful wines.” This statement is especially true for the wines from Bulichella which call the Tuscan Maremma their home. 

I have written some posts about the Maremma and its wines before, most recently about the Colle Massari Lombrone Montecucco Riserva. The Maremma is fascinating to me and I love the large variety of wines which are produced in it. Its soils are incredibly fertile and the climate is very benevolent.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with what the Maremma is I will refer to the site Maremma-Tuscany. The English Wikipedia article on the Maremma is frankly quite poor so don’t bother reading it.

How many of you have heart of Suvereto DOCG before? If I had to make a guess then I’d say only a minority has. And to be fair, I don’t blame you if you haven’t heard of it before. The likes of Brunello di Montalcino, Vino Nobile di Montalcino and of course Chianti have had much larger commercial success and popularity thanks to excellent marketing.

Suvereto wines are made in the Maremma, just like Montecucco and Morellino di Scansano with the distinct difference that Suvereto is lesser known. The most famous and internationally acclaimed wine from the Maremma is probably Bolgheri DOC and even though it is much a much older appellation than Suvereto, Bolgheri’s status was never upgraded to DOCG level. Naturally, Bolgheri producers were unhappy when in 2011, only 11 years after the creation of the DOC-title, Suvereto was awarded DOCG status.

Suvereto DOCG is the only Tuscan DOCG appellation which allows the production of varietal Cabernet and Merlot wines. Varietal Sangiovese is also common. White Suvereto does not exist.

Bulichella

One of the wineries which produces Suvereto wines is Bulichella, a winery whose wines I have tasted many times at home and trade fairs. So I was really surprised when I found out that I only wrote once about their wines so far.

The estate of Bulichella is located not too far from the medieval town Suvereto after which the appellation Suvereto DOCG is named. Elba, a small island, can be seen from the surrounding hills. An impressive view. The soil is also very much suited for olive trees and so it is no surprise that Bulichella also makes olive oil next to its seven wines. Since 1983, the farm is certified organic.

Location of Bulichella in Tuscany:

Without further due here are my tasting notes on six of the seven Bulichella wines.

Bulichella Wines

2014 Bulichella – Tuscanio Bianco – Vermentino Toscana IGT

2014 Bulichella Tuscanio BiancoThis is a varietal Vermentino which fermented and aged in stainless steel vats. It shows a yellow color with green nuances. Mostly flowers with a bit of fruit on the nose, especially white flowers and acacia.

Dry with a moderate acidity. Slightly mineral with a touch of bitter almonds and very easy-to-drink. Medium-bodied and nicely balanced. Medium length. 12.5% ABV

3.5 starsVermentino is mostly associated with Sardinia but this Tuscan Vermentino is a solid white wine. Perfect for warm summer evenings.

2012 Bulichella – Rubino – Toscana IGT

2012 Bulichella RubinoA blend of 50% Sangiovese, 25% Cabernet Sauvignon and 25% Merlot. Parts of the wine aged in used French oak barrels for 6 months. Rubino has a ruby red color in the glass. Aromas of marasca liquor, blackcurrant but also pepper and leather on the nose which lacked some intensity.

Green tannins and a biting acidity were noted on the palate. Notes of earth, cocoa and pepper. Medium-bodied wine with a short aftertaste. 14% ABV

3 starsRubino is Bulichella’s entry red wine. It’s ok but is no match for their other reds.

2011 Bulichella – Tuscanio Rosso – Suvereto DOCG

2011 Bulichella Tuscanio RossoTuscanio Rosso is a varietal Sangiovese which aged for 12 months in French barrique. It has a very deep ruby red color with some purple hues. Highly concentrated and complex nose with raspberry, blackcurrant, espresso beans, hazelnut and black pepper.

On the palate, dry, warm and full.bodied with a balanced acidity and powerful tannins. Blueberries and plums as well as oaky notes like licorice, cocoa and coffee. Slightly mineral with a persistent aftertaste. 14.5% ABV

4 starsHighly complex Sangiovese which can take on a number of Brunello.

2011 Bulichella – Hide – Toscana IGT

2011 Bulichella - Syrah100% Syrah; 22 months French barrique – Hide is a bold Syrah which shows a ruby red color with purple nuances in the glass. The nose is composed of roses, blackberries, red cherries, nutmeg and cinnamon. In the mouth,

Hide is very dry with strong tannins. Good complexity with lots of layers. Nicely balanced between oak and fruit with notes of vanilla, blackcurrant, cinnamon and blackberries. Spectacular finish and very long aging potential. Start drinking this vintage in 2018 to fully enjoy it. 14.5% ABV

4.5 stars

Hide is one of my favorite Tuscan Syrah. It’s a must try for any Syrah lover.

2012 Bulichella Coldipietrerosse – Suvereto DOCG

2012 Bulichella - ColdipietrerosseColdipietrerosse is a blend of different Cabernet clones with very small amounts of Petite Verdot. The wine aged for about 22 months in French barrique. It shows a ruby-garnet red color in the glass. Stunning nose which evolved over the time in the glass. There was a heavy aroma of leather, a bit of earth and blackcurrant marmalade but also some bell pepper, cinnamon, vanilla and lots of ripe cherries.

The palate is as amazing as the nose with lots of chocolate and ripe berries, especially raspberries. Coldipietrerosse is a heavenly Cabernet with a great personality. Full-bodied with smooth tannins and slightly mineral. Highly elegant wine, perfectly balanced. No flaws. Words cannot describe the beauty of this wine 14.5% ABV

5 starsThe 2012 Coldipietrerosse exceeded my expectations (2011 vintage rated 4.0/5.0 stars). Try this wine. Trust me, you won’t regret it!

2013 Bulichella – Sfizale – Aleatico Toscana IGT

2013 Bulichella - SfizaleSfizale is one of two sweet wines which Bulichella produces. It is sourced from 100% Aleatico grapes (the other one is called Tesoro and is a varietal Viognier). Fermentation and aging take place in stainless steel tanks. Ruby red color. An incredible nose with tobacco leaves, rhubarb syrup, lots of green olives, raspberry jam and a hint of toffee.

In the mouth, full-bodied and creamy. An amazing passito with a nice, refreshing acidity which keeps the sweetness in check. Notes of taggiasca olives, herbs, cherries and raspberries. Great intensity with some minerals. A vivid, complex wine full of energy with a very long-lasting aftertaste. This is the sort of passito that shows the complexity sweet red wines can have. 16.5% ABV.

5 stars

This is the sort of Vino da Meditazione (ital. for “meditation wine”) that will round up any great dinner. Also pairs well with fine dark chocolate or aged cheese.

Parting Words

Two five star ratings in one post?! Yes, I am quite surprised myself because I don’t hand these out easily as regular readers of Vino in Love know. However, both Coldipietrerosse and Sfizale fully deserve it in their own way. If you visit Tuscany then I highly recommend you to visit Bulichella. They also have an agriturismo which offers accommodations.

I would love to hear your thoughts on the Maremma and on the wines if you have tried any of them.

The wines reviewed in this post were samples which I received from an importer. As always, all views are my own. For more information on Vino in Love’s sample policy take a look at this page.

For today, I will leave you with this video which shows the stunning landscape of the Maremma. Watch it while drinking some Maremma wine! Cheers!

12 comments on “Exploring the Maremma: Bulichella”

  1. Andy Andy Reply

    Impressvie ratings, Julian! Haven’t heard of this producer before. Will see if they are available at my local wine shop.

    • Julian Rossello Reply

      Andy,
      The wines from Bulichella have an overall very high quality and especially Sfizale and Coldipietrerosse were heavenly good.
      Would love to hear your thoughts on these. Cheers!

  2. thedrinkingchocolate Reply

    I visited Grossetto last fall and toured some of the Maremma. Loved the landscape with its magnificient views. Your post brought back some good memories! Next time I am in Tuscany I try to remember to visit Bulichella. Their wines sounds delicious to me!

  3. Michelle Williams Reply

    Great article Julian. Though I don’t think we will make it out the coast on our trip this fall I will file this away for our next Tuscan adventure. Thank you so much for introducing me to a new region and winery. Cheers.

    • Julian Rossello Reply

      Michelle,
      Thanks so much for your kind words! I figured that you might not have the time to drive up the coast and there is so much to see in and around Montalcino anyways.
      Don’t forget about the Maremma though if you go back to Tuscany another time 🙂 Cheers!

  4. Bill Dufton Reply

    I have had several red wines from Maremma and each and every time I’ve thought about what great value they are. Just like every other product, styles and trends/demand take over and people get caught up in following rather than just exploring. Brunello, Super Tuscans, etc. take all the limelight and the other worthy wines get little attention. I’ve felt that way about Morellinio di Scansano sometimes too – not always but they can be surprisingly worthy. Same with Campania, Basilicata, and Puglia – regions relegated to second status that have spectacular wines.

    • Julian Rossello Reply

      I very much agree with your observation, Bill! The Maremma offers in deed many great value reds but a lot of customers don’t branch out from the likes of Brunello, Chianti and Super Tuscans when purchasing wine from Tuscany. Grape varieties such as Pugnitello have been grown in Tuscany for far longer than Sangiovese but become harder and harder to find.

      Another hidden gem in Tuscany is Cortona. Not sure if you’ve heard of it but it’s another very interesting Tuscan wine-producing town because they mostly grow Syrah and Viogneer there. In fact, their Syrah are very often compared and confused with Syrah from the Rhône.
      Cheers!

  5. Jen Martin (Vino Travels) Reply

    It’s amazing to me some of the lesser known DOCGs of Tuscany that folks aren’t familiar with including Suvereto. I personally can’t say I’ve had one myself that I recall.

    • Julian Rossello Reply

      Jen,
      Tuscany is full of amazing wines which are lesser known and often underappreciated like Suvereto. Thanks for stopping by 🙂 Cheers!

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