Visit to Azienda Fratelli Revello (16 November 2016): a wonderful family team
Visit to Azienda Fratelli Revello (16 November 2016): a wonderful family team
The grandfather of Carlo Revello and of his brother Enzo was a sharecropper of the local parish of San Martino at La Morra. In 1967 he bought the first plot after which other plots were added to the property over the years. Conca was the last cru to be purchased (in 2000) while the crus of Gattera and of Giachini were purchased by the father of the two brothers. Carlo took over the management of the estate in 1987 and he was joined by Enzo in 1990.
Starting in 2016 the two brothers decided to divide the property.
Enzo kept the original homestead and cellar and maintained the same name of the estate and the original logo on the labels.
This decision was mainly taken in order to favour the new generation by giving it responsibility and work. Enzo’s son Simone and his daughter Elena are both working full time at the estate. Simone is an enotechnician and he has attended the “Scuola Enologica” of Alba (school of oenology). Elena is about to graduate in foreign languages at the University of Turin.
Enzo and Simone are the winemakers and agronomists of the estate. The consultant agronomist is Paolo Ruaro. Elena takes care of tastings, marketing and administrative matters. Luciana, Enzo’s wife, takes care of the delightful “agriturismo” at the homestead and of the holiday apartments that the family owns in the town of La Morra (this is a good tip if you visit this lovely area of Italy!).
The total vineyard extension is 9 hectares of which, 5.3 hectares are planted with Nebbiolo for the production of Barolo, 2 hectares are planted with Barbera, 0.6 hectares are planted with Dolcetto and 1 hectare is planted with Langhe Nebbiolo.
The crus of Conca, Gattera and a part of Giachini at La Morra are now owned by the estate. The grapes from the Cerretta cru at Serralunga are also vinified.
Giachini: the grapes of the lower part of the vineyard (4,000 square meters) are vinified. The altitude is 230-240 meters above sea level. The soil is calcareous-clayey with a small percentage of sand. The vine training system is guyot and the vineyard density is 4,000-4,500 vines/hectare. It is an historical cru. The vines of Giachini were planted by the grandfather of Enzo and Carlo in 1954.
Gattera: the vineyard extension of the estate is 1 hectare divided into two plots with a different exposure, south (250 meters above sea level) and south/east (250 meters above sea level). The total vineyard extension of the cru is 20 hectares. This vineyard is adjacent to the winery. The symbol of Gattera is the beautiful cedar of Lebanon planted right on the top of the hill in 1856. The soil is white, calcareous. It yields wines that are austere, with evident tannins and with a good acidity. The lower part of the vineyard is used for the regular Barolo. The wines made from these vines are matured in large Slavonian oak casks in order to enhance their classical character. This cru is different from the other ones of the area. A part of the vines was planted in 1954 and a part in 1987. All the vines follow the contour lines of the hill.
Conca: this is the smallest cru of La Morra. 7,500 square meters are owned by the estate and the total vineyard extension is 2.45 hectares. The exposure is south and the altitude is 250 meters above sea level. The soil is calcareous and clayey. It was purchased by the Revello family in 2000 and it previously was contracted. It is next to the homestead and below the road that goes to La Morra. It is a natural and very protected amphitheatre. It is the warmest vineyard of the estate. The vines of Conca were planted part in 1954 and part in 2001. The first vintage of Barolo Conca was 1997.
Cerretta: 1 hectare of this cru in Serralunga has been vinified since 2013. This plot belongs to the family of Luciana, Enzo’s wife. The vines stand on the highest and best part of the vineyard. The exposure is south and the soil is calcareous-sandy. The altitude is 300-350 meters above sea level. 2,000 bottles of Barolo have been produced in 2013 and will probably be released in 2018.
The total extension of the cru is 39,33 hectares.
The Barbera and Dolcetto vineyards
The Barbera and Dolcetto vineyards occupy the spaces not planted with Nebbiolo. The vine training system is guyot and the vineyard density is 4,000-4,500 vines/hectare.
Barbera d’Alba “Ciabot du Re” is made from the two oldest vineyards (1.5 hectares in total). One is in the Giachini zone, it has a south-east exposure and the altitude is 250 meters above sea level. The other is in the zone of Bricco Manescotto (in La Morra) and it also has a good exposure (south). The altitude is 240 meters above sea level. The soil of the two vineyards is calcareous-clayey.
There are two plots of vineyards planted with Dolcetto for a total of approximately 6,000 square meters. In one plot the vines are 60 years old, in the other they are 20 years old.
The estate is certified for integrated pest management (IPM). IPM emphasizes the growth of a healthy crop with the least possible disruption to agro-ecosystems and encourages natural pest control mechanisms. At the estate copper and sulphur base products are mainly used.
A spontaneous grass cover is left on the aisles between the rows of vines. The grass is mowed and worked into the soil. The fruit-grape moth is controlled through the “sexual confusion” system (this technique consists in placing strips emanating insect sex attractants - pheromones – in the vineyards. These pheromones mask the female insect’s own attractant so that the sexes fail to get together). The Revello estate was the first in the area to use this technique. It was then followed by the neighbouring estates and now nearly all the wineries in the area use it. It has given good results.
All the operations in the vineyard are carried out by hand. The grapes are harvested by hand and placed in crates.
During the harvest the clusters are crushed every two hours (approximately six times a day).
The surface is approximately 800 square meters and the cellar is built underground. It was gradually enlarged over the years, the last time in 2010. The vinification sector is equipped with 3 rotary fermenters with temperature control and with 2 vertical steel vats with automatic systems for the pumping over of the must, also with temperature control. The total capacity (for vinification) is of 400 hectolitres. The vats are controlled by a computerised system. The cellar is also equipped with a pneumatic press and with a bottling plant. There is no filtering equipment.
The part of the cellar for the ageing of the wines is equipped with French Allier oak barriques (medium-light toasting). There are five large Slavonian oak casks for Barolo Gattera and for Barolo Cerretta (which is aged 50% in large oak casks and 50% in barriques) of a capacity of 15 hectolitres.
The complete range of wines of the 2013, 2014, 2015 vintages will be released with the label of Revello Fratelli, as the bottled wine and the wine that was still maturing was equally divided between Enzo and Carlo. More in detail:
- Barolo DOCG (100% Nebbiolo): 15,000-17,000 bottles/year
- Barolo DOCG Conca (100% Nebbiolo): 3,000-3,500 bottles/year
- Barolo DOCG Gattera (100% Nebbiolo): 5,000 bottles/year
- Barolo DOCG Giachini (100% Nebbiolo): 2,000-2,500 bottles/year
- Barolo DOCG Rocche dell’Annunziata (100% Nebbiolo): 500 bottles/year
- Dolcetto d’Alba DOC (100% Dolcetto): 4,000 bottles/year
- Barbera d’Alba DOC (100% Barbera): 12,000 bottles/year
- Barbera d'Alba DOC "Ciabot du Re" (100% Barbera): 4,500 bottles/year
- Langhe Nebbiolo DOC (100% Nebbiolo): 6,000 bottles/year
- Langhe Rosso DOC L’Insieme (40% Nebbiolo, 30% Barbera, 30% Cabernet): 900 bottles/year
Barolo DOCG Cerretta 2013 (100% Nebbiolo) will probably be released in 2018. The production is 1,700-2,000 bottles.
The Baroli of the 2013 vintage
2013 was a good vintage, the wines have structure and they are pleasant to drink. It is a vintage that will give a lot of satisfaction for many years.
Starting from the 2016 vintage, only the Barolo Conca, Barolo Gattera, Barolo Cerretta and Barolo Giachini, made from the homonymous crus now owned by the estate, will be released, together with Barbera d’Alba, Barbera d'Alba "Ciabot du Re", Langhe Nebbiolo and Langhe Rosso L’Insieme.
“A controlled grape yield in the vineyard. Our idea is to continue as we have always worked: fermentation and maceration with the skins for 6-7 days (for Barolo). Use of barriques. We limited the use of new wood: 40% for the single vineyard Baroli and 20% for the “regular” Barolo. Barolo Gattera matures in large oak casks, Barolo Cerretta matures part in large oak casks and part in barriques, the wine is then blended. The alcoholic fermentation of the wines is spontaneous (indigenous yeasts).”