A family history
“The wine – as our father Vincenzo used to say – is made in the vineyard”, and it is here that – every year – an unique journey begins, due to accuate work and passion, that will lead to enclose in a single bottle what nature can offer us. Vincenzo, born in a peasant-origin family, approached the world of viticulture in young age. In addition to agricultural activity, he began his practice grafting cuttings and doing this work, he started to get passionate to rootstocks and clones. After marriage in the ’50s – due to the economic crisis – he emigrated to Great Britain for 12 years, where he worked as a gardener. When he returned to Italy, he bought a small estate of 5 hectares in Refrontolo, hometown of his wife Maria, placed in the heart of the Conegliano Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore D.O.C.G. historical production area. In 1964 he founded the Company – that still bears his name – cultivating vineyards, raising cows, attending to the woods and, for greater economic support to the family, raising silkworms with mulberry trees, that supported the rows of vines. Vincenzo was able to transfer the experience and all the passion to his sons Sante, Luciano and Gabriele, who nowadays lead the company with the help of nephews, Umberto and Francesca, who studied at the historic and renowned School of Enology G.B. Cerletti of Conegliano. Our wine is nothing but the result of the dedication and the care we attend our vineyard, the love for our land and the passion for what we do. These are our values we grew up with, the basis of our business philosophy, always in search of excellence, respecting the tradition.
Our Town: Refrontolo
Refrontolo is located on a “belvedere”, a suggestive hilltop viewpoint in front of the Quartier del Piave and Montello and centrally located in the Conegliano-Valdobbiadene Prosecco hills. The name, originally written Ronco Frontulo seems to be composed by the latin words “roncum” – deforested land, tilled – and “frontulum” – similar to frond, with referring to a forest; so the meaning would be “populated place in the woods”. Just in 1540 the current denomination was used for first time. The Refrontolo area was firstly controlled by the Lombards and, since the tenth century, was dominated by the bishops of Belluno. The first mention is dated 1075: in the document Traditio Avasia, it is told that Turingio – of Lombard origins – left several properties to the monastery of Saints Candido and Corbiniano – sited in Saint Candido town – including the benefit of Ronco Frontulo church and four estates located in the same village. On 2th January 1266, after assembly, the inhabitants of Refrontolo decided to give themselves to the municipality of Treviso, against the interests of Caminesi and the bishop of Belluno. Even during “Serenissima” Republic of Venice domination, the territory was administered by the Collalto family, noble landowners who resided at the homonymous castle. From 1797 Refrontolo followed the fate of Veneto and passed from Napoleon control to Austria and then became part of the Kingdom of Italy. Today the town is a hilly area, where the environmental and morphological conditions of the land create the ideal habitat for the grapevine cultivation, in fact heres produced the worldwide celebrated Prosecco Superiore di Conegliano Valdobbiadene D.O.C.G., Colli di Conegliano Bianco and Rosso D.O.C.G. wines and Refrontolo Passito D.O.C.G. , that of course it is produced exclusively in Refrontolo.
The Company – founded in 1964 by Vincenzo Toffoli – is located in Refrontolo (200 meters above s.l.) at the bases of the Prealps of Treviso, on charming hills of Alta Marca zone, in the heart of D.O.C.G. Conegliano – Valdobbiadene and Colli di Conegliano D.O.C.G. area. In our company the vineyards are cultivated in an enchanting valley facing south and sheltered from drafts, creating the ideal habitat environmental and morphological conditions for grapes cultivation. Terroir: The terrain – of glacial-alluvial origin – has an excellent relationship between sand and clay and it allows an adequate retention of minerals and organic substances for sustaining grapevine, with discrete water retention capacities, during summer season. The number of grapevines /per hectare ranges from 3000 to 3400 depending on the variety, the cultivation systems in use are Sylvoz and Guyot. Our estate also faces along the “Via dei Cru” of Refrontolo, route that winds on the ridges of our town, that combines the scenic charm with absolute excellence fruit of ancient knowledge in wine production.
Our company philosophy has always focused on research of excellence, respecting the tradition. To achieve this, due to use of modern technology, centered on decreasing the working labor and optimizing the promptness of intervention. The different farming operations in the vineyard, performed when possible with specific equipment, are then with “careful eye” finished manually. The grapes come from our vineyards placed on hills of Conegliano – Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore D.O.C.G. area, they ripen in late summer, when the temperature difference between day and night – typical of this area – amplifies the sensoriality of the cultivated varieties. The harvest – exclusively made by hand, in the cooler hours of the day – it’s meticulous and careful.
The processing in the cellar
INNOVATION AND TRADITION The first phase of the winemaking process, to obtain the grape must, takes place by squeezing the entire grapes in controlled atmosphere, without oxygen and at low temperature, very important step which allows to preserve the primary aromas present in the grape berries and greatly restrict the sulfur dioxide content in the bottle. THE SPARKLING PROCESS AND AGING The grape must, after a still decanting period at cold temperatures, is poured and begins the first fermentation phase during which happens the wine transformation process. After some simple decanting targeted, the weather and the cold winter, the refine and prepare it to sparkling process, while maintaining the integrity of the noble substances derived from the first fermentation. The sparkling system technique adopted is the “Italian” method, conceived by Federico Martinotti in 1859. The base wine, once placed in suitable sealed containers, begins the second fermentation phase during which produce the beloved bubbles. The process duration and temperature influence the fineness of the sparkling wine, as the creaminess and the bubbles size will vary in base on these important factors. In this mode, after at least 60 days from the beginning of sparkling process, the wine is ready to be bottled and tasted.
The appassimento process
The processing of the grapes takes place in accurate way, following ancient local traditions, to obtain high quality products. Particular attention is paid to passito wines (Refrontolo Passito and Verdiso Passito) that are the result of a remarkable selection of grapes, harvested only on the higher parts of the vineyard. This procedure considers to pick only the best and most suitable clusters, that are put on the drying racks, in the period from the first days of september till january – february. After the vinification, a slight passage in barrique matures and raises these wines, evolving and refining the peculiar notes that characterize the identity of each single variety of dried grapes.
” Versa il vino, eccellente marzimino “
W. Amadeus Mozart, “Don Giovanni”
The grapes of Prosecco Superiore
GLERA ROUNDED TYPE BUD: CHARACTERIZED BY GREEN PEAK WHITISH FLUFFY WITH RED EDGES LEAF: PENTAGONAL, THREE AND FIVE-LOBED, WEDGE FORM CLUSTER: BIG, PYRAMIDAL AND STRAGGLY GRAPE: SPHERE FORM, DOTTED WITH THIN AND AROMATIC SKIN GLERA LONG TYPE BUD: COLORED AND TOMENTOSE LEAF: BIG, BRIGHT AND DARK WITH VISIBLE RIBS CLUSTER: COMPACT, TENDENTIALLY PYRAMID FORM AND HEAVIER RESPECT TO ROUNDED GLERA CLUSTER GRAPE: ELLIPTIC FORM, FLAVOR TENDENTIALLY VEGETABLE VERDISO TYPE BUD: ROSE AND PASTORAL LEAF: MEDIUM, THREE-LOBED CLUSTER: PYRAMIDAL AND TENDENTIALLY COMPACT GRAPE: ELLIPSOIDAL, GREEN, CRISP AND BALSAMIC