Wine Tasting: Cascina Ca Rossa

Feb 12th
$10 dollar tasting fee
(fee waived for wine club members)

There are actually few wineries in Roero that can boast years of unbroken service to the vineyards and wines of these sunlit, sandy hills. For centuries the area was a trading hub, a venue for exchanges between the Savona, Langhe and Turin areas, and this is why until no more than ten years ago, most growers did not actually make wine themselves: the wine was made by tradesmen who came to purchase the grapes. The Ferrio family is an exception to the rule from this point of view too. The very beginning of their wine-making venture dates back to when Angelo was little and his father Alfonso, after years of hard work and sacrifices, finally managed to buy the family farmhouse set high above the road from Canale to Asti. While the sixties were in full swing, life for farmers in the hills was far from easy. The only way to eke out a living was to diversify: fruit trees, a small vineyard and a few cows, to get through the bad years. But it was then, when depression hit hard, that an unconditional attachment began to form between the Ferrio family and this land. When Angelo returned from military service, the wine-making panorama in Roero was already changing. Thanks to Arneis, but also and above all to the perseverance of wine- makers who never gave up on an ancient, precious tradition, on red grapes like Nebbiolo, Barbera, Brachetto dal Grappolo Lungo.

The first proper “bottling” came in 1995: up till then the wine was left in demijohns and sold locally. In the space of just twelve years, the company made incredible progress - important plots of land were acquired, placed in some of the most prestigious parts of Roero, including Audinaggio in Valmaggiore di Vezza d’Alba. The latter is no normal vineyard, but a steep uphill work camp, where everything has to be done by hand. This is where the pride and sheer determination of these heroic growers can really be seen. And it embodies the spirit of Ca’ Rossa: all the winery’s vineyards are on hill-side sites which are worked manually, using sustainable practices, to safeguard the environment and best respond to the needs of the soil. It is thanks to firm roots in the local area, a solid network of friendships with the members of the new generation of Roero wine-makers, like Matteo Correggia, and constantly striving for a high level of quality, first and foremost, that Ca’ Rossa has come so far.

The figures speak for themselves: 13 hectares of estate-owned vineyards, a crop density of up to and over 7,000 vines per hectare, and more than 70,000 bottles produced annually, from grapes which draw on the sandy soil of marine origin to create some truly unique aromas, and which testify to a deep-seated bond with this land. In the meantime the winery building has been renovated and extended, with rows of modern temperature-controlled stainless steel vats, barriques and big Slavonian oak barrels which embrace the wine, caressing the sun-ripened Nebbiolo ageing within. Angelo’s eight labels represent the elements in a family tradition which passes from generation to generation: from Alfonso to Angelo and from Angelo to Stefano. The family remains true to its history and values, while developing and innovating the winery with the help of oenologist friend and adviser Beppe Caviola.