If you drive from Verona to Lake Garda you shall pass the Valpolicella Classico zone. Likewise, if you go east to Venice, you will pass the venerable Soave Classico area. Smacked in the middle between these two areas is the lesser established Valpolicella DOC; in 2001 Graziano founded his red wine adventure here in Morandina.
Graziano describes his philosophy “…the production of food is a gastronomic act. To be a source of food pleasure, the food must be good, but also pure and correct: it must be the result of sustainable agriculture that respects the environment and workers’ dignity. When we buy food, we choose also an agricultural model. This is a fundamental issue that determines the future of the planet: its survival or its destruction.”
“A long search for the perfect vineyard brought Graziano to the higher marl slopes of the Valle di Mezzane. Sitting on white soils deriving from chalky rock, ancient clay and marine sand, La Morandina is located on 500 mt altitude on rubble and schist that envelop the vine from the trunks to the roots as they burrow down in their search for water. The grape yield is obviously very low giving more body to the wines. This was Graziano’s aim when he decided to adopt organic agriculture that doesn’t interfere with the natural balances that have been established over time. The high levels of chalk and surface marl are the main elements needed to obtain wines that are very fine and elegant with good freshness, medium body and low ph. making them perfect for long aging and easy drinking.”
The local grape varieties contribute unique characteristics to the final wine: Corvina gives spiciness and cherry aromas, Corvinone gives glycerine and vibrant freshness, Rondinella adds delicate fruit and light floral aromas whilst Oseleta provides colour and robust tannins. The grapes are dried in a fruttaio (drying room) from 20-30 days then vinified. Maturation in 20hl casks for 18 months.
This vintage can be described “Graphite minerality, and some earthy notes plus a hint of Christmas in this, with orange peel tang, cloves and lovely semi-dried figs and prunes. A big rich wine with great length, but elegant nonetheless.“