Guado al Melo | Estate in Castagento Carducci in Livorno province in Tuscany producing wines under the Bolgheri DOC, and the Bolgheri Superiore DOC.
Owner | Guado al Melo is a family business. The vineyard and winery are managed personally by Michele Scienza with the collaboration of his wife Annalisa Motta.
Family background | Michele’s great-grandparents, Valentino and Margherita Scienza, were winemakers in Trentino, in Avio (Val Lagarina), farmers in a noble landowner’s estate. Their son Ezio, after an initial escape from the harsh country life of the time, returned, regaining the vineyard where his parents had worked for a lifetime. With his wife Giuseppina, between the 1950s and 1960s, he produced grapes for the social winery (a co-operative) and cask wine. In 1978, under the pressure of his son Attilio and his wife Caterina, they began to bottle, and went to the Vinitaly wine fair in Verona for the first time to present wines from their small Trentino winery called Vallarom.
In 1998 unfortunately Ezio and Giuseppina both died within a short time. The Vallarom winery was too small to allow all interested grandchildren to continue the business. So it went to our cousins, offering the opportunity to Michele to realize a new project of life in Tuscany, with his wife Annalisa.
Michele Scienza: Attilio Scienza’s son. He takes care of the vineyard and the winery in Guado al Melo. He has lived in the world of wine since childhood. His dream was to be winemaker, like his grandparents, and he was able to realize it thanks to the support of his family. During and after the technical and scientific studies (graduated at the Enological Institute of San Michele all’Adige, then graduated in Biology at the University of Milan). He worked for both the family and other wineries to gain experience. His first solo harvest was in 1990, when he was twenty years old.
Annalisa Motta | Annalisa met Michele at the University in Milan, where they both studied biology, and thanks to him she learned to love wine. After her PhD thesis in Plant Biology, she “passed” in this world with a master’s degree in Sensorial Analysis and working in several oenological laboratories. Since 2002 she is working full-time with Michele in the management of Guado al Melo. She is also in love with all the cultural and historical aspects of wine, as well as a passionate self-taught graphic designer, becoming the curator of the museum of Guado al Melo. Michele and Annalisa have two children: Giovanni (2001) and Federico (2001).
The estate | The decision to plant a vineyard in this location was not made by chance but as a consequence of in-depth knowledge about its viticultural quality potential, thanks to its history and to the zonation studies carried out here in the 1990s.
Historical figures and documents report that these areas have been cultivated as vineyards at least since the mid-1800s. Between 1820 and 1821 the land were purchased by the landowner Giovanni Espinassi Moratti, becoming part of an estate that has left an extensive documentation. Thus we know that, from then on, they were mainly dedicated to viticulture, with the varieties of Vermentino, Trebbiano toscano, Malvasia bianca and nera, Sangiovese and other Tuscan vines. The wine was sold in nearby cities. After the Second World War the estate was broken up and our land passed to different owners. In 1998 we bought it from the last of them.
The link with Bolgheri of the Scienza family was born thanks to Prof. Attilio and his work. He frequented the territory from the late 1970s: he followed the planting of the vineyards of some wineries, then the changes in the DOC and conducted the study of viticulture zonation of the territory. By now he knew the territory inch by inch. When the opportunity arose for a new family business in ’98 and it became known that a parcel was for sale in one of the best areas of the appellation, the opportunity was not missed.
This passage of properties had left this particular parcel without a name. Historical maps showed the area was a toponym “Guado al Melo,” or Ford at the Apple Tree, which was a ford across the Fossa di Bolgheri stream that forms the northern boundary of the property. In 1999, the vineyards were re-planted. In 2000 Michele and Annalisa moved to live permanently in Castagneto Carducci. Their children were born here: Giovanni in 2001 and Federico in 2007. The first real harvest, with the birth of the first wines, was made in 2002. A winery was built ready for the 2005 harvest.
Mesoclimate | Mediterranean climate. Mild winters and hot, dry summers, tempered by the breezes from the Tyrrhenian Sea. The scarce rainfall is concentrated in winter and spring. The estate’s location in the hills usually brings temperatures cooler than the rest of the area, and more significantly, broad day-night temperature differentials. The vineyards are also protected from the cold tramontana and grecale winds, which in early spring can bring frosts to the coast.
Soils | In ancient eras, they were formed from alluvial detritus from the Fossa di Bolgheri stream. They are deep / very deep, characterized by low fertility and good drainage. They are sandy /sandy-clayey, with clay inclusion.
Soil types: Le Porcarecce. Stony type. Very deep clayey-sandy soils on old terraced of alluvial deposits, calcareous, moderately well drained, with pebbles (from poor to abundant). There are areas more clayey. | Castagneto Stony type. Deep fine sandy-clayey soils on terraces and hilly slopes, not calcareous, pebbles from medium to abundant. There are areas more clayey. | Greppi Cupi. Very deep sandy soils on old dunes and hilly slopes, not calcareous, few pebbles.
Winery | Built using the principles of bio-architecture.
Field blend wines | Regarding field blend, co-fermented wines Attilio Scienza says that ‘wines in their youth show the characteristics of the grape variety, and with age wines show the characteristics of the terroir.’
Amphora wine | During a visit to the winery in June 2019 it appeared an amphora wine was being developed.
Toscana Vermentino IGT, L’Airone | 100% Vermentino.
Bolgheri Bianco DOC, Criseo | From a single vineyard called Campo Bianco which was planted as a field blend as preparation for climate change. In the field the planting was 70% Vermentino, 30% Fiano, Semillon, Verdicchio, Manzoni Bianco (Incrocio Manzoni 6.0.13) and Petit Manseng. All the grapes are co-fermented and aged in stainless steel on fine lees. The name Criseo means gold or made of gold in Etruscan. The dancing satyrs on the label represent the three gifts that Bacchus gave to mankind to make us forget the afflictions of life: wine, dance and music. | 2017 14%. Bright fruit, lovely acidity, vibrant yellow fruit t the winery Fri 27 Sept 2019. | 2018 Interesting, very salty, yellow fruit, oloroso-like sherry-like note at the winery Fri 27 Sept 2019.
Bolgheri Rosso DOC, Rute | Rutte is an Etruscan term for ‘red’. Made from Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Aged 12 months in barrel on the lees.
Bolgheri Rosso DOC, Antillo | Antillo means ‘sunny place’. Made from Sangiovese, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot.
Toscana Rosso IGT, Bacco in Toscana, Bombabàba | Sangiovese and Syrah.
Bolgheri DOC Rosso DOC, Atis | Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon. A vineyard selection from Campo Grande and Campo Ferro: Aged 24m on lees in oak. Atis is the name of a mythical king, grandchild of Zeus, and said to be at the origin of the Etruscan people.
Toscana Rosso IGT, Jassarte | This is from a single vineyard called Campo Giardino. It contains a field blend of 30 different grape varieties. They are harvested and fermented in small field-blend lots according to each lot’s ripening period. The lots are then blended together and aged 24 months on fine lees in barrel. The choice of grape includes varieties from both the Mediterranean and the Caucasus, thus from both west and east. According to the the Ancient Greek writer Heterodus the border between them was marked by two rivers, the Indus and the Jassarte.
Attractions | Library As fruit of his labours and passion, Attilio Scienza has gathered an extensive library of some 15,000 volumes, ranging through all aspects of the culture of wine—technology, history, geography, sensory analysis, dissertations. It also includes a valuable collection of ancient texts on oenology and viticulture, some of which are on display. The library is at the disposition of interested students and experts. | Museum Regarding the history and wine culture of the Bolgheri territory.
Guado al Melo
Loc. Murrotto 130/A
I-57022 Castagneto Carducci (LI – Livorno), Italy
Tel+39 0565 763238 | www.guadoalmelo.iy