Situated just outside Verona, in the Morainic Hills near Lake Garda, Vini Sassara is a new project from longtime natural winemakers Alessia and Stefano Bertaiola. With a background in agricultural research and development, Alessia joined forces with third-generation winemaker Stefano, her husband, more than a decade ago and together they farm a 10-hectare site that has been in Stefano’s family for 50 years. This is Bardolino country, a DOC in the Veneto region most famous for reds that are a lighter bodied version of next door Valpolicella. But being natural winemakers, Alessia and Stefano are less concerned with what conventional winemakers are doing in the area and instead have set out to show what the indigenous grapes and Bardolino terroir are capable of when allowed to express themselves naturally. The area was once an ancient sea, and the hills were shaped by later glacial activity which left the soils rich in marine deposits and a complexity of morainic sediment (Quartz, Granite, Calcarius, Alabaster etc). Alessia and Stefano are blessed with mostly big, thick, sturdy old vines roughly 60 to 70 years old, with some younger vines they have planted themselves. Vine training is what's known as a "Veronese double arch", a variation on the double guyot. The red varieties they grow are Corvina, Rossanella, Rondinella and Molinara and whites varieties include Fernanda, Moscato, Trebbianello, Trebbiano, Garganega and Tocai. The wines they produce are some of the most exciting wines we had from Bardolino. They are both complex and deep while maintaining a lovely delicacy. They are neither the simple, often insipid light reds of the local coops nor the conventional, heavily extracted, “international” wines like Amarone and Valpolicella. Sassara wines are full of bright, juicy, joyous fruit and minerality and speak of the people that have lived and drunk wine here for centuries! Welcome to the past and future of Bardolino.
Fruity , Funky , Juicy