Pedigree: Levan Bandzeladze founded Marbano as a continuation of his family's extended winemaking heritage. The family was resettled in Eastern Georgia in 1941 and has been making wine using traditional Georgian technology since then. The family has owned vineyards since 1950 and cultivates indigenous Georgian grape varieties such as the white Rkatsiteli, Goruli Mtsvane, Chinuri and the red Saperavi, Tavkveri and Asuretuli.
Grape Varieties: 100% round-grained khashmi Bolnisi Saperavi
Vinification: The grapes are sorted meticulously in the vineyard and transported in small picking boxes. Fermentation takes place in qvevri. The wine stays on the skins for 1 month and then for a further 8 months after removal of skins. The wine does not receive any oak treatment.
Ageing: The wine is aged in bottle for two years before release.
Total Sulfites < 40 ppm
Color: Deep mulberry, very dark, opaque, supported by the fact that Saperavi is a teinturier, one of a very few red wine grapes with red juice; the vast majority of all wine grapes have white juice.
Bouquet: Lifted aromas of sweet black cherries. Some evolution and a hint of fresh bananas reflecting its qvevri winemaking regimen.
Palate: Palate is redolent of the nose. The entry is round, and mouth filling with black cherry and a suggestion of dark stone fruit. There is complexity enhanced by the passage through qvevri and a suggestion of minerality. This is a medium to full bodied wine, well balanced with supporting acidity all framed by well resolved tannins. The finish is medium long with a suggestion of sweet, ripe fruit. As Levan writes, "It is as sweet as love, as pure as an angel and tender and affectionate like the sea."
When to Drink: Drink now through 2025
Serving Temperature: 60°F - 65°F
Food Pairing: Veal kidneys grilled medium rare over vine prunings. Grilled fresh vegetables too. There are infinite pairing possibilities to accompany the great selection of fresh Georgian produce, much of which is available elsewhere.