A journey through the most majestic wineries in Italy
Sitting at the table and browsing the menu is the beginning of the experience of going to eat in a restaurant. For wine lovers, it is no less important to implement the same gesture with the wine list. In many cases this is not a simple menu, but a real book to leaf through while imagining which combination could best enhance each dish, or in many cases, which bottle could be more worthy of being part of that celebration or special moment. .
In Italy, the cellars of restaurants are often their most precious corner, a space where the bottles of their collection are kept with care and passion. Some of these wineries are real temples for lovers of the world of wine, and attract lovers of the beloved drink almost as if they were going on a pilgrimage. When we talk about wine lists and dream cellars, we can’t help but think, for example, of the impressive collection of 65,000 bottles of Maurilio Garola from Ciau del Tornavento, Campamac di Barbaresco, Trattoria I Bologna in Rocchetta Tanaro, Locanda del Pilone in Alba, at the Pinocchio Restaurant in Borgomanero or at Sant’Uffizio in Cioccaro di Penango by chef Enrico Bartolini, with his over 300 labels kept at the “Teatro del vino”, the restaurant’s prestigious cellar.
We interviewed Alessandro Tupputo, the sommelier of Madernassa di Guarene, always discovering little-known but highly valuable labels, has carte blanche in the construction of tastings capable of transforming the experience into a wine journey.
How many references do you have in your cellar?
“2000 references of which 700 are reserved for all those small producers who work in full respect of nature”.
What is the percentage of international, national and local labels?
“Langhe and Roero, we could only have at least 55% of local products. 30% of the wines are international. While 15% of national wines, especially small producers and historical Italian producers ”.
Are you looking for producers who have some particular philosophy?
“I am looking for all those small and medium-sized producers who work in full respect of nature and in full respect of the final consumer. More than anything else, producers who work in an organic, biodynamic way or producers who maintain traditional processes “.
How often is your wine list renewed?
“The renewal of the menu also varies according to the period and the style of cooking that our chef implements. I make a program of at least 6 months and always insert new types so that every time the customer comes back to visit us he finds new proposals. Working a lot in various combinations, the types are often by the glass, so if a customer comes to visit us even once or twice a week, I can serve completely different wines than the previous time “.
How do you store wines?
“As far as white wines are concerned, they are placed in a special cell with different temperatures based also on the type of white. On the other hand, as regards red wine, we have an air-conditioned cellar at a constant temperature, which does not exceed 16 degrees, in such a way as to be able to guarantee a humidity level that does not exceed 18%. And therefore maintaining the perfect integrity of both the bottle and the elasticity of the caps which is essential for micro oxygenation “.