Radikon, made in the far-east of Venezia-Giulia, has to been tasted to be believed. It pioneered the movement towards both natural and orange wines. Everything about it is unique, from the bottle to the production method to the taste – it is truly an experience all wine-lovers should have. When the late Stanko Radikon began his stewardship of the 12 hectares of vineyards, which are located near the Slovenian border, he came to the conclusion that the local indigenous grape, Ribolla Gialla, needed to be treated differently to other varieties if it was to reach its full potential. So, he set about changing his methods. It was in 1995 that Radikon began using his grandfather’s method of vinification, which involved seven days of skin maceration and led to more colour and flavour making its way into the wine. After some refinement of the technique, today’s wines have three months of maceration, along with long periods of barrel and bottle ageing. Radikon also discovered that this long-term maceration led to a more robust wine, which also meant that by 2003 he was able to cut out the use of sulphites entirely. The specially designed bottles, introduced in 2002, also use high quality corks that avoid cork tainted wine. The grape selection process and low yields mean that only the very best berries are used. In a good vintage, it is usual for a whole vine to go into a single bottle. The result is unusual orange and red wines with astronomical complexity, high ageing potential and deep, wild, flavours.
This wine spends around three months on its skins, resulting in a deep amber wine with a rich, oily texture and heady notes of toasted, salty almonds and quince. Its name is 'Tokaj' backwards, a grape that owing to Italian bureaucracy is now renamed Friulano. Please note that this wine is bottled as 500ml rather than 750ml, a decision made by Radikon to alter its ageing development.