Cantina Giardino was born as a joint venture between six friends, Antonio di Gruttola, Daniela De Gruttola, Davide De Gruttola, Pasquale Giardino, Antonio Corsano and Nadia di Gruttola. We started this project with the specific aim of preserving old vineyards and native varietals within our home of Irpinia.
In our view the rich fruit yielded from the native plants and the resistance of the older vines is irreplaceable. The roots bury very deep below the earth’s surface into the rocks beneath. In contrast, young varietals can only achieve this after many years, and only if they have not been subject to chemical treatments. Thus from the outset we have been convinced that older vines tend to produce fruit of a higher quality and have been determined to protect them. This was intensified and made more urgent as increasingly people in the area began to pull these traditional sites apart to make way for new clones of a higher yield.
We felt it was vital that we helped counteract this trend that threatened to uproot so much of the region’s heritage.
Before we bought our own land, we sought out local growers who still produced grapes from such sites (generally older than 50 years). We discovered a web of people who farmed according to tradition, with minimal intervention and with a distinct lack of chemical additions. Supporting this chain of producers and ensuring that their vineyards remain intact is vital in the preservation of this heritage and a central part of our work.
In 2010 we were finally able to buy five hectares of our own land. These vines, nestled on a hill in Montemarano, were planted in the 1930s. Reviving and cultivating this site and growing our own fruit has added another dimension to our work but we continue to collaborate with the growers in the area who made this endeavour possible in the first place.
After every harvest the grapes are taken to the cellar below our home in Ariano Iripina. The fruit undergoes maceration in traditional wooden casks or amphora - the length of skin contact varies in accordance to the specific conditions of each year. Maintaining the purity of the fruit is essential and as such nothing is added in the cellar, with the exception of minimal amounts of sulphur at bottling, and only if deemed necessary.