"Molise che NON esiste"...Molise that doesn't exist...this is a well-worn phrase in Italian and one that comes with a variety of connotations. On one hand, Molise is a "forgotten land", some would say a rural backwater while others would say it's Italy's last hidden gem. Like all things, the truth lies somewhere in the middle.
Molise lies on the southern cusp of the high Apennines. The land here rolls from the steep slopes of interior Abruzzo and is a gateway to the southern plains of Puglia. This geographical situation is what in part separates Molise from its surroundings...it's a middle ground and much like the middle child, it's often forgotten about. It's also small, only the Valle d'Aosta is smaller. Molise is also "new"...officially becoming its own region in 1970 when it separated from Abruzzo.
Of course, this land is hardly new. Molise is an ancient territory, rich with pastoral history (lots of sheep farms here!), olive groves, and of course grapes. The winemaking culture, as you can imagine, has remained either largely a "contadino" or homemade, farmer affair or has been exploited by a small handful of larger, international style wineries seeking to use less sought-after land and grapes to make potent wines for the market. When it comes to natural wine, the scene in Molise is, well...bleak. Perhaps until now!
Two friends, one Molisano and one Abruzzese, Amir and Michele respectfully, began their new winemaking adventure with a vision to make Molise ESISTE! They want to showcase the land that is Molise, a place where traditions, terroirs, and grape varieties mingle from surrounding regions, by making some very compelling natural wines. They are starting from scratch, making the first vintage of wines in some borrowed space at Lammidia in southern Abruzzo. All the grapes are from Molise just a short drive south where they farm a handful of hectares both owned and leased. All the fermentations are of course with native yeasts and thus far they are working without any added sulfur. We are pleased to introduce the wines of Giostra and look forward to watching them grow, tinker and evolve for years to come. Here's to a new Molise that does EXIST!
Bacio di Lara
Falanghina & Trebbiano Toscano, co-fermented. Partial whole cluster/de-stemmed fruit with ~10 days skin contact. Open top fermentation w/o temperature control and aged in stainless steel.
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