‘Le Tense’ Sassella Valtellina Superiore DOCG 2016

Nino Negri

The name “Le Tense” originated during the domination of the Swiss Three Grey Legions from 1512-1797. The best vineyards were “tense”; protected by the guardians of the vines, the “arbostrari.”

Terroir: The Nino Negri Le Tense is sourced from 20 acres of vineyards from the top crus of the Sassella subzones of Minè, Longini and Chiesa Sassella which are home to some of Valtellina’s oldest vineyards. Situated at elevations above 1200 feet these steep, terraced vineyards are made up of shallow, stony soils. Vines are very densely planted and yields are kept to a minimum.

Vinification: The ripe grapes are sorted and macerated for 4 days in temperature controlled tanks. Following fermentation the wine is aged for 18-20 months in a combination of large and small french oak casks. 70,000 bottles produced.

Additional Information

Le Tense shows the elegant, feminine style of Chiavennasca (Nebbiolo). A bright, medium ruby color is followed by a nose of bright fruit, earth and exotic spice. The wine is medium bodied on the palate with layers of fruit, and a firm, dry finish.

Technical Details

  • Appellation: Valtellina Superiore DOCG
  • Winemaker: Casimiro Maule
  • Sustainability: Sustainable Practices
  • Soil: Sand, Gravel
  • Vineyard Acreage: 20 acres
  • Alcohol: >14%
  • Sizes Available: 750ml
  • Pack Size: 6/750ml
  • Varietals: 100% Chiavennasca (Nebbiolo)

Recent Press

  • Score: 92 Points

    The Wine Advocate Author: Monica Larner
    Date: Friday, February 26, 2021
    "The Nino Negri 2016 Valtellina Superiore Sassella Le Tense is a silky and polished wine with forest berries, blueberries, bitter almond, crushed rock, ash and mild spice. The wine has all those ethereal and delicately balanced aromas of a Nebbiolo-based Valtellina wine, however they are presented in a slightly more immediate and accessible manner (with 45,000 bottles made). This is a great wine for cheesy raclette."
  • Score: 92 Points

    Vinous Author: Antonio Galloni
    Date: Thursday, May 7, 2020
    "The 2016 Valtellina Superiore Le Tense Sassella is an enticing, multidimensional wine. Sweet cherry, incense, crushed flowers, mint and sweet pipe tobacco are all beautifully knit in this medium-bodied yet deeply flavored Sassella. Deceptive in mid-weight feel, the 2016 has a lot going on, and quite a bit to offer, too."
  • Score: 92 Points

    Wine Spectator Author: Alison Napjus
    Date: Saturday, November 30, 2019
    "Loaded with spice box, wild herb and graphite aromas, this medium- to full-bodied red is bright, with tangy acidity, offering flavors of fresh and candied strawberry fruit, trimmed by light, taut tannins that firm the minerally finish. Drink now through 2029. 3,750 cases made, 100 cases imported."

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