CALALTA | Mussolente, Veneto
In their own words:
Calalta is a small winery located on the hills at the foot of Monte Grappa at an altitude of 150-200 metres. The winery is sited in a 16-hectare property where woods, olive trees, fruit trees and a pond promote a wide biodiversity with an advantageous microclimate. Our work is respectful and delicate. We carefully take care of our winery humbly and patiently, but having fun too.
The winery belongs to the Brunetti family. In the past, the grapes were sold and wine was made for friends and family. In 2009, after a very careful evaluation of the soil and the sun exposure, and in order to obtain the highest possible quality, the vineyards have been replanted. Since 2017 the winery is led by Nicola Brunetti who personally takes care of the production process, from the field to the cellar, with a special focus on respecting the ecosystem and preserving the authentic characteristics of Calalta’s terroir.
OLIVIERO TOSCANI | Casale Marittimo, Tuscany
If Oliviero Toscani seems like a familiar name to you, we're not surprised. Toscani enjoyed a very successful career as a commercial photographer, creating some of the most controversial and celebrated advertising campaigns in the 80s and 90s for Benetton, where he served as their creative director. Since leaving Benetton in 2000 he has continued to turn heads with his provocative photography, and has even run for parliament in Italy.
A Tuscan resident since 1970, Toscani had always intended to make wine on what is now the 12 hectares of the estate devoted to vineyard. Wine production began in 2003 with advice from friend and world-famous producer Angelo Gaja, who consulted on what and where to plant, along with agronomist Federico Curtaz. The vineyards all sit at approximately 350 metres above sea level. Toscani's wines are all based on Syrah, which does spectacularly in this coastal part of Tuscany near Bolgheri. Also part of the estate are 4500 olive trees, American quarter horses (which the family breeds), as well as cows and pigs. The olive oil and salumi produced here are highly regarded.
Today the wines are made by Toscani's son Rocco who, also a celebrated photographer for several years, dove headlong into winemaking and joined the family business. The estate is organically farmed and produces about 70,000 bottles per year across its 5 labels. The wines have won many accolades from publications like Decanter and Wine Spectator over the years, and we know you will love them too.
About the label on the iToscani:
"The label of iToscani is inspired by Oliviero’s late father Fedele Toscani, and his agency’s “Rotofoto” logo. “Rotofoto”, a photo agency that mainly collaborated with the Italian newspaper “Corriere della Sera”, was founded in 1946, and is seen as the beginning of everything the Toscani family has created after. The logo’s brick red colour not only represents the red soils of our vineyards, but inspires us to think of the ruby red hue our wine creates on the rim of the glass. The elegant round circles signify the complex structure yet finesse of the wine, and the play between the contrasting white and red colours stand for the intensity and light(ness), while simultaneously impersonating the perfect symbiosis between the Syrah and Teroldego grapes from which the wine is made."
DIRUPI | Ponte in Valtellina, Lombardia
Dirupi was founded in 2004 in the mountainous region of Valtellina in Lombardy just south of the Swiss border. The founders, Pierpaolo Di Franco and Davide Fasolini, are childhood friends who crossed paths once again when they both were completing oenology degrees in university. Neither had inherited land to work after graduation so the two combined what little resources they had upon completion of their degrees and rented 15 different terraced sites in Valtellina devoted to Chiavennasca (the local name for Nebbiolo). Dirupi employs sustainable practices and strives to farm organically, but the humid climate of Valtellina makes organic certification difficult. So it is all the more impressive that three of their wines achieved organic certification with the 2015 vintage.
Above the cellar housed in a sixteenth century building in Sondrio, the vineyards are scattered across Sondrio, Montagna, Poggiridenti, Grumello and Inferno. Typical to the region, all sites vary in some degree when it comes to exposure and altitude, but the terraces are predominantly sandy and poor. Organic fertilizers are used, wild ground cover is trimmed back with scythes, and naturally all harvesting is done by hand. Plots are harvested as individual lots and brought down the slope to be vinified together based on the altitude of the vineyards the fruit came from. Valtellina, centred around the province of Sondrio, produces high-quality and some of the most appreciated wines in the region. They are considered two of the best young winemakers in Italy.