Visiting a family-run vineyard in Italy
This Le Marche winery has been producing their own DOC verdicchio wine since 1938 and welcomes visitors to take an intimate look into their wine-making and tasting process.
Azienda Vitivincola Marani is a small, family owned and run vineyard in the Le Marche region. The Marani family opened their business in 1938 and has since been making delicious wine, most importantly a DOC variety of Verdicchio di Metelica, for generations. They recently restructured their facilities after multiple earthquakes had destroyed some buildings and production equipment and now they have a few wine cellars where wine from multiple years sits aging in huge oak casks.
We were able to try 3 years of wine and a couple of strains from different casks so we could taste the difference in flavor that each individual barrel gives to the wine. Luca Marani explained that the type of wood that the cask is made of and even the distinct strain of yeast used to age the wine all lend slightly different flavors that were surprisingly very noticeable, even with my complete lack of wine knowledge and experience. Interestingly enough, we started the tasting with wine harvested in the vendemmia just 15 days before, which hadn’t had much time to age at all. Although it was completely new and cloudy in color, it was still quite decent to drink. We then tried the 2017 and 2016 varieties still in the aging process and finally the 2015 which was already bottled and ready to be sold.
Luca, our wine tasting guide and member of the most recent generations of Maranis working at the vineyard, was so knowledgable and engaging while speaking about the winemaking process and product. He gave some great explanations about concepts that had previously seemed very foreign to me, such as the biological process wine undergoes while aging. It’s also so rewarding to speak directly with someone passionate about working at a family business and enthusiastic about his craft.
Azienda Vitivincola Marani specializes in Verdicchio di Metelica, a DOC wine that’s native to the Marche region of Italy and well known for its balanced flavor and yellow color. Luca explained that the primary notes in this wine are of honey and apple, describing it as a crisp and refreshing wine wine with a bit of acidity that pairs well with a wide variety of foods.
On our way out, we picked up a few bottles of the 2015 which came in at €10/bottle and a large jug of their 2016 which was €1.5/liter. Both options are amazingly cost effective because you’re cutting out the many middlemen who are usually involved in the selling process. A glass of what might cost €8 in Italy is available for much, much less because there’s no markup.
Visiting the winery
If you’re interested in touring a vineyard and are in either the Umbria or Marche regions, I highly recommend this independent winery. The attention to detail, how friendly they were with visitors, even after we randomly decided to drop by, and the quality of the wine make this worth a trip. Side note: You’ll definitely need a car to arrive and be careful of the Google Maps directions as we were headed down a dirt farm road until realizing our mistake and being thoroughly chastised by the property owner.
I’ll be sharing more of my favorite places to visit in this area over the next week, but if you’re looking for inspiration for Umbria and March destinations, I have posts on Spello, Orvieto and Perugia in the Umbria region, and two on San Marino and Urbino in Le Marche. I’d love to hear your thoughts regarding the Marche region and whether you’ve been or not! I still think it’s quite underrated and has so much to explore from a tourism point of view.
Open Monday-Saturday, 8-12 & 3-7 pm.
Voc. San Nicola, 117, 62024 Matelica MC
+39 333 571 1737 | firstname.lastname@example.org