State of Ripening of the Sangiovese Grape Varieties
Staff Writer - September 12, 2006
The progression of ripening of the Sangiovese grapes varieties has been monitored by the ARSIA (Agenzia Regionale per lo Sviluppo e l'Innovazione nel settore Agro-forestale della Regione Toscana, or Regional Agency for the Development and Innovation of the Agricultural and Forestry Sector of the Tuscan Region) in various vineyards in the provinces of Florence, Siena, Pisa, Lucca and Grosseto. In general, the ripening process appears to be aligned with last year and the seasonal trend. The sugar level is growing.
From the end of August, with the harvest season closing in, the monitoring service on the ripening progress of the Sangiovese grapes, provided by ARSIA in collaboration with the Scuola Superiore S. Anna di Pisa (Santa Anna College in Pisa) and the Istituto Sperimentale di Viticoltura di Arezzo (Experimental Viticultural Institute from Arezzo) has started. The service program includes recording the ripening progression in several monitored production areas, and reporting weekly results from vineyards located in the provinces of Florence, Siena, Pisa, Lucca and Grosseto. The data are part of of a support system intended to help vintners in deciding when to harvest. The data elaboration is published online on the site agroambiente.info, and is available to all vine growers and wine producers.
The data for the week from Monday 4, to Sunday, September 10, 2006 are aligned with the 2005 data as well as the average yearly progression. The lack of rain and the good temperatures of the last few weeks favored the optimal progression of grape ripening. The sugar level increased in all the monitored areas, while the acidity diminished only in some of the production zones. The vineyards which registered sugar level above 21° Brix are located in the Colline Grossetane (Grosseto Hills), Colline Pisane (Pisa Hills) and Montalcino.
Below, please find the report synthesis for all the monitored zones:
- Colline Grossetane (Grosseto Hills): The sugar content and the ph resulted higher compared to the previous week, while the acidity is mostly unchanged.
- Colline Pisane (Pisa Hills): The ripening process progressed, with higher sugar content, lower acidity and higher ph, compared to the August 28, 2006 reading. The average total content of polyphenols is 3,404 and that of extractable antocyans, 792.
- Colline Lucchesi (Lucca Hills): Regular progression of the ripening process. The lack of rainfall favored the rise of the sugar content while lowering acidity.
- Chianti Senese (Chianti from Siena): Sugar content is at the same level of the same period in 2005, while the acidity level is higher. Compared to the August 28 reading, sugar content and ph are on the rise, while acidity level is getting lower.
- Chianti Fiorentino (Chianti from Florence): Sugar content is at the same level of the same period in 2005, while the acidity level is lower. Compared to the August 28, reading sugar content, acidity and ph are slightly higher.
- Montalcino: Ripening is proceeding with results similar to those of 2005. Differentiations within the areas are not noticeable. Brix reading is within the 19.9° and 22°, while acidity ranges from 10.7 and 12.9.
- Montepulciano: The average total acidity is fairly similar to those recorded for the same period in 2005, while the sugar level is higher. Compared to the first 2006 reading, the sugar level is higher, total acidity is lower, and the ph remained substantially the same.