Inspired by our seventh birthday, we've chosen one of the wines that kicked off Iron & Rose.
Stefano Belloti was one of the originals, a leader of the natural revolution and an inspiration to many, including me. I was fortunate to visit and stay on the farm a few years ago and to witness the difference between Stefano's biodynamically farmed vineyards - full of life and energy - and the by contrast lifeless soils of agrochemically farmed vineyards next door. Stefano's persuasive and informed enthusiasm was infectious.
Today the poly-cultural farm and agrotourismo in the Piedmont hills is carried on by his daughter, Ilaria, in the same spirit: natural to its core, slightly mischievous, and focused on producing delicious wines and food that truly speak of their origins.
Ivag is made from Cortese grown in the Gavi hills but Stefano didn't really rate most wines called Gavi and often struggled to get certification to label his wine as Gavi so he reversed the letters and created a new benchmark for the region.
This is Gavi, but perhaps not as you know it. Full of character, mineral but with a lovely weight and texture. Using Cortese grapes grown biodynamically, a natural fermentation and no added anything including no added sulphites, this wine wasn't so much as made as accompanied from vine to wine.
PS if you want to know more and learn more about the birth and struggles of natural wine, watch Jonathan Nossiter's film, "Natural Resistance" which features Stefano.
Producer - Cascina Degli Ulivi
Country - Italy
Region - Piedmont
Appellation - Gavi
Variety / Blend - Cortese
Farming - Organic / Biodynamic
Wine Style - White Wine