Back to nature! Nurture the vine and make wine the traditional way. Back to humanity too, simply by getting closer to nature and listening for the clues Mother Nature gives us, thus undoing the havoc wreaked upon nature by a century's industrial unconsciousness. A fulfilling task, surrounded by nature and her gifts; in the intense summer heat or in the clear September light.
Vine-blossom and its winter repose. The vine forces us to follow cycles that are measured in decades, punctuated by unannounced, almost imperceptible signs from the plant that tell us the vines personality and temperament. The vine itself teaches us not only ancient ways to grow our food, but it also influences our way of looking at things by making us look for the very essence of what's around us.
Anything that man does to the soil upsets its natural balance and therefore should be reduced to the absolute minimum. The grass growing below the vines is mown and in the farm many nests are displayed, where birds, insects and bats (animals that help the grapes to ripen) can nest. The soil our vines are rooted in undergoes no sort of treatment whatsoever, we avoid chemical weed-killers, chemical or organic fertilzers.
During the second half of the 18th Century, the Corinaldi earls decided to embark on the wine making business, something that had always been practised in the Lispida hills. By amplifying the already existent buildings of the 18th Century monastery, they built the actual cellar, made up of 9 tunnels, the longest measuring 55 metres in length. The potential capacity is of 30.000 hectolitres, which is one of the largest in the Veneto region.
The ceilings and the floors were made using terracotta bricks and un-plastered stones (trachite) from the local area, they help maintain the temperature below 18°C even on hot summer days and keep the humidity constant at 80%, which is perfect for fermentation, conservation and the ageing of the wine. In the 2 tunnels designated for ageing, there are various oak wood casks measuring 20, 30 and 50 hectolitres, where red and white wines are stored for a period varying from 3 to 4 years; at the end of this settling period the wine is then bottled and left to stand for further fining before being sold.
In the tunnels where the fermentation vats are kept, the large vats of 30 to 50 hectolitres are used for the fermentation of the red wine and for a part of the whites. Next to these are the underground amphoras made entirely from terracotta, which is where the fermentation and finery of "Amphora" takes place, the first Italian wine made using the antique winemaking methods of the Romans.