Wine is harmony, balance of olfactory and gustatory scents, a pleasure to taste and listen as a melody in which all the elements live together in perfect harmony. These aromas and sensations are found in the high quality production of the Company ‘Ippolito’, managed by the family, now in its fifth generation - Gian Luca, Paolo and Vincenzo - who have been able to capitalize on more than 160 years of tradition, passion, and research, as well as love, handed down by their ancestors.
The company, which can boast the title of oldest winery in the entire district of Calabria, located in the historic centre of Cirò Marina, includes a farm of more than 100 hectares, with autochthonous vines only – as Paolo Ippolito, one of the owners, is proud of specifying - distributed among the gentle hills and sunny plains near the Ionian Sea, in the classical area of Cirò.
The commitment in caring these vineyards is concretely expressed in the transformation of carefully selected grapes for producing wines characterized by a strong personality and a well-defined identity. Ippolito explains: «The continuous technological modernization and the ongoing research, aimed at recovering the tradition, enhance the intrinsic characteristics of an especially suited terroir. Today our family proudly treasures up a heritage built in a hundred and sixty years of work, experience, and satisfactions. We aim at absolute quality, by seeking the immortality of our wines in the indissoluble link between history, vine, land, and human intervention. Thanks to our will of creating, surprising, and being amazed, our work is a passion, and our passion is a philosophy of life».
Enhancing autochthonous vines
In the year 1845, Vincenzo Ippolito engraved his initials on the cottage he owned in the sea-coast of Cirò among vineyards, olive and orange groves, so allowing vine to acquire an important role in a varied agriculture, although the consumption of wine was purely local.
Today, as then, the mission of this company is devoted to the recovery and enhancement of autochthonous vines, primarily ‘Gaglioppo’, ‘Greco Bianco’, ‘Calabrese’, and ‘Pecorello’. The last one gives its name to the homonymous label: a wine characterized by a vibrant, balanced, and persistent taste, a complex, Mediterranean and elegant scent, with notes of citrus, yellow-fleshed fruit, and mineral tones.
Thanks to its uniqueness, ‘Gaglioppo’, the oldest of the autochthonous vines of Calabria, is worth a special mention: it is characterized by a black berry, of a probably Greek origin, typical of the provinces of Cosenza, Catanzaro, and Crotone, in Calabria, its leaf is usually medium, pentagonal, with medium - large, pyramidal or conical bunch, with medium, black-brown grape. It produces pure wines, whose colour is ruby, intense, quite tannic, austere; with ageing, wines become characterized by finesse and elegance.
Ippolito's vineyard area consists of three estates situated in the heart of DOC Cirò; these lands range from hilly, medium-textured grounds to sandy- slimy ones in the plains, for an average yearly production of about 900,000 bottles. It has 15 labels in Europe, USA, India, Japan, Australia, Switzerland, Russia (with 40 % of its production destined to export).
DOC and IGT Ippolito wines express themselves on two different stylistic levels: a selection of modern products, with fruity, more immediate, and satisfying notes, without ever falling into banality. For example, ‘Calabrise’, or ‘I Mori’, a happy union between the power of Gaglioppo and the softness of Cabernet Sauvignon, with a deep ruby colour, whose scent consists in an aromatic spectrum of ripe red fruits, on basis of spices, vanilla, and balsamic notes; its flavour is soft, warm, and well balanced. Or the new born ‘160 Anni’, a unique wine, very charming, born during the celebration of the 160 years of the winery. Its colour is deep ruby and its aromas of berries, violets, raisins, and sweet spices are soft. It is complex, with great structure, intriguing fullness). On the other hand, there are the ‘Riserve di Cirò’: the ‘Colli del Mancuso’ has a ruby red colour and smooth taste, elegant scent, with intense aromas of morello cherry, and soft thanks to its slight notes of spice and vanilla, and the ‘Ripe del Falco’: powerful, elegant, long-lived, manifesto of the long tradition of winemaking which Ippolito family boast. A selection in the vineyard of the best ‘Gaglioppo’, care in winery, and a long wait, allow producing an austere, dry and fascinating wine, with hints of leather, tobacco, and liquorice which combine grit and flavour with a certain tannic depth.
The wines produced by Ippolito result to be valuable as for their names, too, which evoke past ages and legends: ‘Liber Pater’, whose powerful and elegant character recalls the strength of the land from which it comes. It is said that Liber Pater, the Italic god of wine and vineyard, received just from this land the delicate fragrance with which he ravished everyone at the feasts in his honour; ‘Mabilia’ is a wine which brings elegance and freshness of Mabilia, a Norman princess of the eleventh century who lived his ‘fairy tale’ in the lands of the Marquisate; ‘Res Dei’ is a wine characterized by a fresh, Mediterranean taste, with a nice minerality, a tribute to a legend according which Cirò is a ‘Gods’ wine’; ‘Chrysòs’ is characterized by gold clusters in the vineyard, transparency, and brightness of freshly pressed must and for these reasons it boasts its name, Chrysòs, given by the ancient Greeks to worked gold in order to indicate its supreme beauty and refined preciousness.