Minimal intervention & maximum attention
Our winemaking philosophy is simple; we only use what the vineyard and the vintage provide to us each harvest. Within this philosophy we have two guiding principles:
Wild fermentation (where possible)
No additions (including tartaric acid, tannins and other artificial products).
Working with 19 different varieties is a unique, yet entertaining challenge.
Depending on the harvest, sometimes we stick with tradition and other times we take the road less travelled. Historically, Nebbiolo is a stickler for tradition, as it undergoes prolonged maceration and ages 12 months in large Italian botte.
The road less travelled involves for example the Touriga and Tintas KVEVRI. This blend is fermented in Georgian Kvevri (clay amphorae buried in the soil), left on skins for 6 months. We also like some of our white varieties to undergo skin maceration.
Field blends and co-fermentation are also another favoured technique. By picking two or more varieties at once and fermenting them together, we are able to create balanced and curious blends. These blends express different facets of the terroir and vary from vintage to vintage, like a time capsule, preserving the specific ideation of the terroir at the time of harvest.
For us at Topper’s, less is more. We tend to avoid using too much new oak as we prefer the varieties to be able to fully express themselves, so we have moved towards fermentation in ceramic vessels.