«Hail brings famine, but it’s always better than disease». Sergio Marchisio resorts to the ancient popular wisdom of the peasants: «We are all well, so let’s not complain». The disaster is still in the air: on July 13th it struck Castellinaldo and the neighboring villages of Canale, Priocca and Castagnito. It was an unprecedented storm of dense hail. Dramatic results: 50% of the harvest was lost. Big trouble: ther’s the risk of losing market share, as the usual amount of supplies is no longer guaranteed. After Covid, also hail. In 2020, wine companies suffered from lockdowns that, for months, had brought exports to zero. And now, once the markets have reopened, here is the bitter surprise from the sky, at the peak of a meteorologically anomalous summer. But just when all seems to be lost, it’s nature that reserves unpredictable and beautiful surprises. The secret? Always her: biodynamic viticulture.
«Look at this, what a sight». Sergio points to the tiny clusters that sprung up after the hailstorm. «Crazy, right? Even the vines hard hit by the hail have already regained their vigor, starting from scratch». The “miracle” is conspicuous, throughout the rows. «I don’t want to make any predictions, out of superstition», says the Marchisio Family leader. «And yet, if we were really lucky and the autumn weather was mild, delaying the harvest of the “regrowth” until late October or early November, we could recover a good 30% of the product. Of course, they would not be completely ripe grapes: but they would be perfect to make an excellent sparkling wine base». Sergio Marchisio knows a thing or two about sparkling wines: he was the first to make Arneis sparkling wine, and one of the very first to do the same with Nebbiolo, obtaining amazing results, universally recognized, thanks to two masterpieces (classic method) kept on yeasts for 9 years.
Sergio Marchisio always manages to smile, even in the least happy moments: as if he “knew”, in some way, that good and bad always end up compensating each other. «I have to laugh – he says – when I think that this year I won’t be able to give my friends my famous biodynamic peaches: the hail literally tore them to pieces. That I have to go and buy peaches at the store says a lot about how we are, in this crazy 2021». But fear not: just take a look at the rows of Arneis. «See those tiny little bunches, born after July 13? They will be ready to be harvested in a hundred days». Prodigies of biodynamics: «It’s as if the vine were talking, and telling you: after all the “pampering” you’ve given me, I can’t leave you without grapes. Isn’t that wonderful?». At least, as wonderful as the glasses of biodynamic wine from the Marchisio Family, aged in amphorae. You taste them, and you never forget them. No hail can erase their inexhaustible magic, their depth and the evergreen richness of their generously infinite summer scents.