Cardedu Bucce Bianco, Sardenian sunshine in a bottle
Grapes: Vermentino, Cannonau, and Nasco
Region: Sardinia, Italy
Bucce means skins, as in macerated on the skins / macerato sulle bucce. This macerato / orange wine is very drinky: sour Mirabelle plums, sea salt, and dried white flowers float on bass notes of coastal wild rosemary and myrtle.
The vineyards of Cardedu (car-DAY-do) are in the area of Ogliastra, the most mountainous and least populous province on the island; a land of turquoise shimmer and ragged-dry cliffs. Here on the southeast coast of Sardegna the Loi family grows and makes wines from the native varieties Vermentino, Cannonau, and Monica. Cardedu is one of the islands better known (in Sardegna, at least) traditional producers. Old school,The Loi family doesn’t think of itself as a natural wine producer; they are not in that hipster 'giro'/circle. Yet, all wines are fermented with native yeasts in temperature controlled tanks (if needed), and there’s dry farming without use of herbicides or pesticides. Sardinian producers are now catching up in popularity to those of Italy’s other large island, Sicilia. One difference that remains is that Sardinia remains more ‘lost in time.’ Cardedu balances on that edge of being traditional but also thoughtful, especially considering today’s warmer climate. In the last few vintages – extremely hot and dry – Cardedu has made lower alcohol wines by picking earlier and careful vineyard management.