Keep it natural, baby.
From a parcel of 80 year old vines planted some 500 metres above sea level in Montemarano. A blend dominated by Aglianico and complemented by a blend of ancient varieties and about ten percent of Coda di Volpe, this spent three weeks on the skins, before being pressed off to chestnut casks for a year. A riot of black and blue fruits, it has light tannins and a beautiful, cleansing acidity.
Antonio and Daniela De Gruttola seek out old vineyards in Irpinia, high in the hills of Campania. They champion and preserve the region’s native varietals, old vines and an age old way of tending them.
The vines are set at altitude and are planted over the region’s vibrant volcanic soils. Vineyard work is done by hand, organically and a combination of great farming and low yields results in healthy, characterful fruit. In the cantina, Antonio takes a no-nonsense approach with the intention of letting this terroir express itself in full. The grapes ferment naturally without temperature control and fermentation can continue for months.
Wines are raised in a combination of terracotta amphorae and large casks made from local woods and bottled unfiltered, with no additions at all. The resulting wines are singular, vivid expressions of grape and place.
Cantina Giardino was born as a joint venture between six friends with the specific aim of preserving old vineyards and native varietals in and around Irpinia, a mountainous town in the heart of Campania. Headed by Antonio and Daniela di Gruttola, the project sources fruit from 16 distinct and often quite distant parcels. In total this represents about six hectares including a 2,5 ha plot that the couple recently purchased. From the beginning, the aim has been to source older vines (50+) from contadini who have been working traditionally for generations, but were at risk of having to abandon or uproot their land.
The indigenous Aglianico, Coda di Volpe, Greco and Fiano grapes are used to make a wide, ever evolving range of reds, whites and rosé, all bottled under colorful and extremely recognizable labels designed by a tight-knit crew of local artists. Vinificaton is an instinctual, unique process each vintage: Antonio currently owns a wide array of aging vessels, including oak and cherry tree barrels, demi-muits, stainless steel tanks, fiberglass and amphoras home-made by Daniela. Each year, the wine ends up where Antonio feels it needs to be. Longer elevages are typical for the Aglianicos, as is skin contact for the whites, although again both vary from wine to wine, vintage to vintage. In rare cases and if deemed necessary, a small dose of sulfur is added at bottling. Otherwise the wine is bottled as-is.
Katie and Denny
Your friendly neighborhood wine shop, focused on small production, organic and biodynamic, natural wines. Connect with us on Instagram for suggestions on your next bottle and to follow along in our downtown Lafayette wine journey.
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210 E. Vermilion Street, Lafayette, LA 70501
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Friday & Saturday
Closed Sunday & Tuesday