Cascina degli Ulivi - Stefano Bellotti

Piedmont, Italy | website

Cascina degli Ulivi produces wines from vineyards of around 16 hectares that have been worked using biodynamic methods since 1985. The estate has been in the Bellotti family since the 1930's and is now run by Stefano and his wife Zita. They are committed to the fundamental beliefs of biodynamism and run the estate as an organic farm and restaurant where practically everything served is organically raised. As Stefano puts it, "We consider that the soil is a ‘companion organism’ for everything that lives. In working our vines, we foster the potential harmony of all those forces that contribute to the flow of vitality (of the vine)". The hard work and dedication is immediately evident in the vineyards where Stefano’s parcels are adjacent to other producers of the area and form which the health of the vines is immediately apparent to the eye. Grapes are hand-picked, and only indigenous yeasts are used to ferment the wines. Use of oak is limited to large, successively-used barrels of traditional provenance, and any filtration is minimal.

Stefano bottled his first Semplicimente in 2008 as a result of his ongoing battles with the DOCG system. The Semplicimente Bianco is 100% cortese from Gavi vineyards, made partially in stainless steel and partially in large oak and acacia barrels. The Semplicimente Rosso is 70% Barbera and 30% Dolcetto from Gavi sites, mainly volcanic soils; the wine is matured in large oak barrels for only 6-8 months.

Filagnotti is Cortese from a particular site of the estate’s best vines, grown in red limestone clay. The wine is made in large oak and acacia barrels.