Ca’ dei Zago Frizzante Col Fondo
Region: Treviso < Veneto < Italy
Grapes: Glera from very old clones + small amounts of Verdiso, Perera, Bianchetta
Vineyard/Cellar Stats: Biodynamic farming, 90+ year old vineyards on soils of clay and sand with siliceous rock parts; spontaneous refermentation in bottle (the local, traditional undisgorged col fondo style); 11% ABV
grapes are harvested by hand in small crates and then are delicately selected and destemmed on a sorting table. After being crushed, the must is transferred using gravity flow to cement tanks; 2-day maceration then the wine rests over the winter. In spring, with the first waxing first-quarter moon of March and April, the wines made from the previous fall’s harvest are bottled using gravity flow; 2nd fermentation occurs spontaneously in the bottle, generating gentle fizz and sediment in the bottom (or fondo) of the bottle.The bottles spend a further 3 months stored horizontally before release, undisgorged, with minimal So2 addition;
Winemaker: Christian + Marika Zago
Ca' dei Zago, on the steep Valdobbiadene hills, is not your run-of-the-mill Prosecco factory. Run by 5th generation Christian Zago and his sister Marika, farming is at the heart. Since the beginnings of the mixed farm in 1924, they have never used chemical fertilizers, an approach that Christian has taken even further as an avid practitioner of biodynamics. “Nature is stronger than you. If you break the balance in the vineyard by trying to control it, you can’t recreate it in the cellar, only temporarily coerce the wine into a fake, short-lived equilibrium,” he asserts. Love this! Like many of his fellow natural growers, Christian received a conventional education that led to troubling dichotomy between the natural ways of his ancestors and the conventional methods taught at school. After working at biodynamic vineyards around the world, he found his path and returned home to put these practices in action. Read more here about his use of animals and lunar cycles, it's cool stuff, and really unique for the region.
Just like this complex and refreshing fizz, which is like no other Prosecco you’ve tasted, with gentle but persistent bubbles, bright citrus, aromatic honeysuckle and wet stone. They don’t disgorge, so the lees remain in the bottle and make it a bit cloudy. Definitely not the Prosecco for bottomless mimosas or your book club winos. Share with some adventurous friends, and do what they do in Valdobbiadene: store the bottle the bottle standing upright to keep the fondo at the bottom, then decant into a pitcher, reserving the last bit of sediment-rich wine to be drink separately. It's the best part!