PERSON | It is a small ampelographic treasure chest that has been put together over the years by the winery's four founding partners Vincenzo D'Avino, Luigi Giordano, Gaetano and Generoso Bove. In their 16 hectares of vineyard cultivated in the impervious Tramonti district, on different plots, they guard the native varieties of the Amalfi Coast: pepella, ginestra, biancazita, biancatenera, falanghina for the whites, fragrant, fresh and with a marine edge; tintore, aglianico and piedirosso-from old, pre-phylloxera vineyards-for the reds, with great structure and austerity.
VINEYARD | As the name implies, tintore is a very chromatically loaded grape. A number of centuries-old vines are grown here at Tenuta San Francesco, with ages ranging from 150 to 300 years. The planting system is a traditional pergola: these are pre-phylloxera plants that grow in the impervious Tramonti area at altitudes ranging from 300 to 600 metres above sea level. The terraces that house the vines are characterised by steep slopes that face southeast; the soils are of limestone matrix with volcanic inserts and pumice.
WINE | Usually the tintore is used in blends with piedirosso. Tenuta San Francesco, however, offers us a pure version, a tribute to the very long life of these charmingly rich vineyards. After vinification in steel, it begins maturation in 25-hectolitre barrels for about two years. We remember some vintages of È Iss as particularly hard because of a really complicated tannic density. With the 2018 vintage, however, we return to happier editions: it opens with sensations of medicinal herbs and goudron; it remains dark on sensations of graphite and flint and then gently veers to fruity tones of blueberry and black currant. A red of great character, it has very subtle tannin and a fresh, deep finish.