Wines to Seek Out
This organic winery produces five wines: in addition to the three mentioned below, there is a third single-vineyard Verdicchio and a 100% Montepulciano, neither of which are imported to the United States. Production for the entire estate is tiny (approximately 2,500 cases annually).
La Marca di San Michele “Capovolto” Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi Classico Superiore
Castelli di Jesi wineries tend to put all their eggs in the riserva basket, leaving their DOC-level wines simple and straightforward. The Capovolto (La Marca di San Michele's entry-level wine) defies this trend with its zesty, herbaceous finish that lingers. The length of this finish alone makes it the best wine in its class.
La Marca di San Michele “Passolento” Castelli di Jesi Verdicchio Riserva
La Marca di San Michele's riserva, Passolento, is a show-stopper. Rather than compare it to other wines of Castelli di Jesi, it forced me to compare it to Campagna's Fiano, as well as some of the great whites I've tasted from Burgundy. Passolento is fermented in large 10hl Slavonian oak botti, and it recalls crisp pears, white flowers, key lime, sassafras and a distinct thread of roasted almonds. As complex as the tones are, Passolento's creamy texture gives the wine a luxurious feel. If a warm, spring evening could be bottled, it would resemble Passolento.
La Marca di San Michele “numero___” Vino Spumante Col Fondo
If you don’t like cloudy wines, then there is no sense reading further. But I love this traditional method, non-disgorged sparkling wine made from Verdicchio because I am an unapologetic “breadhead.” This wine’s heady aromas of baguette crust and hazelnuts (the golden apple tones emerging from underneath it all) come directly from the lees contact. I didn’t mind the hazy look, or the fact that bubbles were unpolished and huddled together through the center of the wine. Because it is delicious. Plain and simple. I recently tasted the numeroDue, which is the third vintage from 2016 since numeroZero was the first year. You can follow the pattern in subsequent vintages.