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Satèn: the emblem of Franciacorta.. but what is it really?

It has made Franciacorta great in the Whole World, and after critical success, Forbes has declared it the fourth wine to be absolutely drunk at least once in a lifetime… but, really, what is a Satèn?

Chardonnay Rows

Franciacorta DOCG Satèn

The fantasy name of  “Satèn” , chosen for its assonance and harmony with ” setoso”, which in italian means “silky/ silken”,  a Traditional Method is named, made only with white Chardonnay grapes, in pureness or in assembly with White Pinot, admitted by the Franciacorta policy guideline only at 50%.

The Satèn has become an exclusive designation of the Franciacorta since 1996, when the previous one of “crèmant” has been removed, and after that it has become a real brand, registered by  Consorzio per la Tutela del Franciacorta, the only authority producing this kind of sparkling wine.

Organolectic Features of the Satèn

 


The fine and persistent perlage of Satèn.

At the sensory level, the Satèn is a Franciacorta with the littlest and finest bubble of all. The name has been chosen exacltly as  a reference to the elegance, the excellence and the fineness of the perlage, to the creamy taste and to the silky foam of what has really become a true emblem, which has made the land between Brescia and Lake Iseo famous in the world. The colour is a straw yellow, that can be pale or intense according to the style of each cellar, sometimes with golden glare, others with green ones. At the sense of smell, it is a Franciacorta with a complex bouquet, that at the taste level shows strong hints of ripe fruit, accompanied by delicate notes of white flowers and dried fruit, such as almond and hazelnut. A pleasant flavor and freshness are harmonized in an innate softness that, in fact, recalls the delicate sensations of silk.

A unique pressure

The real uniqueness and distinctiveness of the Franciacorta Satèn, is the pressure; In fact, they are placed in the category of “Satèn “, only those sparkling wines produced with traditional method in which the pressure inside the bottle is less than 5 bar, while for the other Franciacorta the pressure is around 6 to 6.5 bar.

Barometers and Bottles

This final difference is due to a different sugar dosage during the tirage: The fermentation of 4 G/L of sugar produces in the bottle an increase of 1 atmosphere. Therefore, in order to produce Satèn, as well as only vinification white Chardonnay grapes in purity or assembled with a maximum of 50% White Pinot, a quantity of sugar must be bottled to produce this level of pressure.

Satèn according to La Riccafana

As estimator of genuineness, the Riccafana, an ancient cellar on the Southern slopes of Monte Orfano, follows a particular oenological philosophy, which feels the emergence of organic products, authentic representatives of the territorial and microclimatic characteristics of this particular portion of Franciacorta.
Our Franciacorta Satèn is produced from organic grapes 100% Chardonnay, which undergo soft pressing to extract the must flower. Subsequently, the first fermentation takes place in a stainless steel bath and partly in wood. The refinement lasts 24 months before the degorgement, and another 8/10 months in the cellar, where we still keep our bottles for some time, to give them the way to regain balance and harmony in some way altered by degorgement.  The residual sugar of our Franciacorta Satèn is 6g/L, a quantity sufficient to make it a soft product, with a velvety taste, with a silky mousse, but that enhances the natural flavor and emphasizes the minerality given by our magical subsoil, in which predominate limestone, clay and a strong quartz matrix.


The “Satèn Zero” of La Riccafana: a delicious incitement

Riccardo Fratus, owner of the winery, has immediately understood the potential of the 15 hectares that  he grows on the southern slope of the Monte Orfano, and he has always enhanced the natural characteristics of this particular portion of Franciacorta. Combining this desire to his provocative nature, he created, together with his winemaker, a Franciacorta Satèn at zero dosage. “It is an act due and felt to the splendid territory of Franciacorta, by a winery like Riccafana, which since 2006 was the first to believe in organic. “-explains Fratus-” Softness, pleasantness and the silky are obtained by the choice of selected and extraordinary vintages compared to the average, with the maniacal care at the agronomic level of the grape variety of finesse and elegance par excellence: Chardonnay, with a long refinement of at least 38 months. We do not add anything, it is the maximum expression of the matter that together with time, creates this harmony and purity “.

Riccardo
Riccardo
Owner of the cellar and forerunner of organic winemaking.

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