The ideal of Claudio Icardi’s father was to live life ‘as a man’, the son rather prefers to be something more specific: himself.
Claudio Icardi, winegrower at Castiglione Tinella, does so with boundless (bio)energy. He wants to discover, get things done, all the time, even if that sometimes gets him entangled in barbed wire. Claudio is convinced that, in ‘competition’ with terroir, it is the man behind the wine whose input is decisive. He loves music and has learned that wine, too, can make music. To make that happen harsh tannins shouldn’t kill the fruit. Today, Icardi’s vineyards total some 75 hectares. Although any figure at Icardi’s is chronically provisional, it mainly serves to accentuate the 1500 square metres with which Claudio’s grandfather once began.
Out of poverty papà Pierino enlarged the estate with the cheapest plots available, those on the steepest slopes, precisely the vineyards with which the son is happiest today.
So far, Icardi’s vineyards are divided over eight different communes. Many of his wines are assembled from those plots, and thus not made from the produce of a single vineyard. Claudio leaves his wines a large scope to let them express themselves. He only gives his wines ‘a direction’ as he calls it. The fact that the result nearly always turns out to be positive, is mainly due to rigor. Incidentally, working with great care is also essential to allow a minimum use of sulphur, to which this winemaker is allergic. Besides, he is pretty allergic to unnatural winemaking in general. Allowing nature to be natural the Icardi-way means: Taste, No Haste.
Apart from his uncompromising stance, Icardi’s success is also due to his knowledge of yeasts. That allows him not to follow preset temperature schemes, as the right choice of yeasts let them auto-regulate fermentation in an ideal way. The quality that results is what follows when someone who is able to think does just that, and makes wine with a feel for music.
But, in Claudio’s own words: nothing would be as it is without… Maria Grazia