Galeotto was the trip to Tuscany. Dilyana Vasileva and Irena Gergova, wine producers in Bulgaria, in the Struma valley and on the Black Sea coast, years ago spent a holiday in Tuscany with their husbands and, between an art visit and a wine tasting, they met the French winemaker Julian Reneaud. A partnership was born that led to the purchase in 2019 of a 30-hectare estate in Riparbella, a small medieval village on the Pisan hills overlooking the sea, and the launch of a wine project that is now seeing the light.
It is called Colline Albelle (from the ancient name of Riparbella which was Ripa Albella, ie Ripa bianca), for now it counts on ten hectares of vineyards (destined to become 20) and on the two oenological pillars of the thirty-year-old Reneaud: “First of all, working above all with autochthonous vines such as Ciliegiolo, Vermentino, Sangiovese and white Canaiolo that we have rediscovered on the estate – he explains – making the most of them through their use alone, without using them to make blends as usually happens; and then experimenting with alternative winemaking techniques. I only make wines in purity: a particle, a vine, a wine ».
The first result of this philosophy has just landed on the market: Colline Albelle Inbianco, produced in 2,500 bottles, is a Vermentino, harvested early in August which gives a light alcohol content (10.2%), fresh and floral, vinified in steel and in part, for a few months, aged in barrique. It will be followed in June 2022 by Colline Albelle Inrosso, a variation of Merlot. The collection of pure wines will be completed with Sangiovese (it will be called Serto), Ciliegiolo (Altenubi) and Canaiolo Bianco (Halis).
Reneaud is convinced that the territory of Riparbella, in the hinterland of Cecina, rich in tufaceous and sandy soils, has a great wine and tourist potential. This is why Colline Albelle is a project that rests on several legs: in addition to the expansion of the vineyards, the construction of a cellar, the renovation of the historic villa in which six rooms to rent and a swimming pool fed by a spring of water will be created. water at 23 degrees. The total investment is worth ten million euros.
It will be guided by sustainability, above all environmental sustainability: the vineyards are already in conversion to organic and aim for biodynamic certification. «The integrity of the Earth is the future of the next generations – says Irena Gergova – for this reason we have the duty to choose the most environmentally friendly actions both in daily life and at work. It is a binding commitment ».