Santa Colomba

Gianfranco in the cellar

Gianfranco Mistrorigo and Marco Dani are the heart and soul of Santa Colomba, a Domaine perched on the hills overlooking the small town of Lonigo, half-way between Vicenza and Verona in the heart of the Veneto region.

The Palladian Villa at the center of 60 acres of land, surrounded by old vineyards, was once the home of the Giovannelli, a noble Venetian family. Later, it was sold to a congregation of priests and turned into a convent.

One day Gianfranco and Marco, two friends with a passion for wine, paired with years of studies and working experience in winemaking, discovered this hidden treasure of half-abandoned vines, and offered to manage them. The convent agreed and thus was born Santa Colomba.

The two friends immediately set out to convert the entire production of wine to more sustainable methods of farming and cellar practices, in the firm belief that “working in a natural way in this extraordinary environment is a commitment we have made from the start, and a great responsibility we feel we have towards nature.”

18 acres of Cabernet, Merlot, Malvasia, Garganega, Chardonnay and Sauvignon are all farmed organically, with some parcels already certified and others in the process of obtaining certification. Work in the cellar is all about letting the wine express the fruit to its full potential: indigenous yeasts, natural fermentation and neutral aging in stainless steel tanks, with the use of small, spent French oak barrels for some of the wines. Only very minimal sulfite dosages are added at bottling. The results of such meticulous work are very clean and stable wines that are a clear reflection of the fruit and the terroir. Wines that are as easy to drink, as they are elegant in their aromas.

The wines

Principiante

(Graganega 100%, Sparkling White)

Soft press of whole cluster grapes. Fermentation in steel tanks at a temperature of 64.5 – 68 F, with indigenous yeasts. After transferring in a new tank the lees are stirred back into the wine (batonage). A part of the must obtained at the beginning of February to make Recioto (typical Veneto sweet wine), is added to the Principiante at this point. After a few days the wine is bottled, and positioned horizontally for the second fermentation to take place.

Fermovilla

(Cabernet Sauvignon 60%, Merlot 40%)

Grapes are harvested by hand and immediately transported to the winery in small wooden boxes. Press and fermentation in steel tanks at the temperature of 77 to 86 F., with indigenous yeasts. Maceration on the skins for 20 days. After being transferred twice, the wine is aged in steel.

Il Moro

(Cabernet 70%, Merlot 30%)

Grapes are harvested by hand and placed in small wooden boxes. After having been destemmed and pressed, the fermentation process, using only indigenous yeasts, is carried out in steel tanks for 12-15 days. After two successive transfers, Il Moro is aged in small, 225 liter French-oak barrels.

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