The grapevine has grown and flourished in our corner of the earth for 2,650 years…
from some 200 seeds of Vitis vinifera found inside the tomb of a warrior prince of the Piceni people of the 7th century BC to notarial declarations of 1579, which describe the suitability of the Camertina valley to the cultivation of the Verdicchio grape and to the Brungentile (today’s Sangiovese). All of the testimonies bear witness to an ancient, millennia-old tradition of winemaking in this magnificent, nonpareil land of the Marche.
Further, beginning in the 16th century, in the Archivio Catastale Matelicese, mention was made of these grapes’ need to not be picked too early; and in the opinion of the doctor Francesco Scacchi (De salubri potu dissertatio , Rome, 1622), they could also make a fizzy wine in the bottle, forerunner of our sparkling wines, well before the well-known experiments a French Benedictine monk, Dom Perignon.
We must wait, however, some three centuries (1879) to have the first ampelographic description of the Verdicchio grape as the finest white wine grape grown in the Marche, which recognized the uniqueness and versatility of this extraordinary grape. It was officially crowned in 1967 with the establishment of DOC status, the first in the Marche and 14th in Italy. The grape continued its star trajectory with the granting in 2010 of DOCG status to its Riserva version, thus reaching a milestone unique in the Italian wine world. Such is the fascination of long-ago eras, from the Bronze Age to our own day, connected throughout their vicissitudes by the thin red line of the vine and its wine, that as always tells the story of mankind and its emotions.