Italian Extreme: Morgex Estremi 2008

Posted by CrushWine

Mountain Getaway in a Glass
2008 Morgex "Vini Estremi"
Extreme Purity and Tradition from Valle d'Aosta

Clear your mind for a moment and picture yourself on top of a big mountain. Breathe in deeply: Sweet, sharp, pure mountain air...

Delicious, isn't it?

Even more delicious: Today's extreme mountain-wine value, sourced from vineyards planted at 4,000 feet and scattered with pre-phylloxera vines. This is a white wine that showcases all the gorgeous sensations present at altitude: delicate alpine flowers, brushy mountain herbs, flinty rocks and a crisp acidity seemingly etched from mountain boulders.

Skip the ubiquitous Pinot Grigio, push beyond the limits so often defined by Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc, and even Grüner, Muscadet, Vouvray... there is value in the esoteric.

At $15.50 a bottle this is for all of you who love a character-filled find. And for those of you who tread carefully on "geek wine" ground, this wine is for you, too!

The 2008 Vini Estremi is crafted from 100% Prie Blanc (aka Bernarde in Switzerland's Valais region) from vines that *average* 60 years old, while the old-timers are centenarians and beyond. Prie Blanc was almost lost to obscurity in the late 1970s, until today's hero, the cooperative La Cave du Vin Blanc de Morgex et de La Salle, organized over 90 independent growers, most cultivating a mere row or two of vines, and saved this region and its viticultural history and traditions.

While this is a cooperative, the winemaking here is ultra-traditionalist. Ask them if they practice organic viticulture, they'll look at you as if you asked: "Is it beautiful here?"

Grapes for the "Vini Estremi" come from the most extreme ("estremo") areas of the vineyards, which are among the highest altitude vineyards in all of Europe. And due to the traditional "pergola bassa" method of training vines in close-to-the-ground arbors (which protect against harsh winds and winter snowfall), harvesters must kneel and often lie on their backs to pick the golden grapes.

"Estremo" indeed, for a song.

Like the people of this region, the wine is chipper yet roundly welcoming and easy to converse with. Though this is natural winemaking at its core, the Vini Estremi steers clear of any "uber-funk," by warmly offering up scents of white peach, white melon, crispy apple and pear energized by that signature, taut acidity and saline minerality that's unique to mountain wines.

We recommend one for a simple dinner this week, one to have on hand to slug with friends over antipasti and one set aside for this season's first risotto with morels and asparagus... Come to think of it, this "mountain getaway" paired with summertime's grilled fish and a stonefruit salsa sounds perfect too.

That said, we have only 104 bottles to offer. The importer put this on special and we bought *everything* we could, but this was all that was left. Because quantities are so limited, this goes out only to those of you who have supported our Geek white wine program.

Today, the best way to order is to click the "Buy Button" and order through the website - we're testing a new system here!

If you have any problems, of course you can also email us at or call us at (212) 980-9463.


Joe Salamone
Wine Buyer
Crush Wine & Spirits

Morgex et de La Salle

2008 "Vini Estremi"

Special Email Bottle Price: $15.50
Normal Retail $17.99

Not to be confused with regular Prie Blanc bottling


Vini Estremi is in Stock!
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