TENUTA GRILLO, estate near the town of Mombaruzzo, a town in the province of Asti in the Monferrato region of Piemonte, Italy. 

OWNER | Guido and Igiea Zampaglione (husband and wife). Guido’s mother’s family owned the Tenuta Grillo estate in Piemonte. Guido was born in Naples, Campania. He studied Economics at the University of Naples, and Viticulture and Oenology in Piacenza. Work experience at the La Stoppa winery in the Colli Piacentini brought Guido into contact with its consultant winemaker, Giulio Armani, a specialist in natural winemaking. Until 2009 Guido made the Don Chisciotte wines for his uncle Pierluigi Zampaglione. After a change in family circumstances he created a new Fiano-based white Campania wine from his family’s ll Tufiello estate which is called Sancho Panza, a fictional character in Don Quixote (Don Chisciotte in Italian), the novel published in 1605 by Spanish author Cervantes (Don Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra).

VINEYARDS | 2017 32 hectares (79 acres) of land near Mombaruzzo. A dry, chalky-sandy-loam plateau, well drained. 350 metres above sea level. 17ha are vineyards. Barbera, Dolcetto, Freisa, and Merlot for red wines; and Cortese, Chardonnay, and Sauvignon Blanc for white wine. Vines planted at 3,300 vines/ha are being converted to 4,000 vines/ha and 6,800 vines/ha. Casarsa trained vines are being converted to guyot. 



PIEMONTE BIANCO, BACCABIANCA | A skin macerated white wine. Guido told me skin contact of around 5-6 weeks allows flavours to move from the skins where most of the flavours are into the must (juice/wine). The wine is then made stable, or more robust from oxidation, by ageing in oak casks, which allows minimal addition of sulfites. / 2006 Vino da Tavola Bianco Cortese 100% Cortese. Fino sherry style, but clean and intense at the Natural Wine Fair, Borough Market 15-17 May 2011. / 2009 Cortese. Orange wine at the Real Wine Fair 2016.


BARBERA D’ASTI DOCG, IGIEANamed by Guido Zampaglione after his wife. / 2004 100% Barbera. 

MONFERRATO ROSSO DOC, PRATOASCIUTTO | The name means dry meadow. / 2005 100% Dolcetto. Minimal sulfur dioxide. Aged in large oak casks. Brett at the Real Wine Fair 2016. / 2006 Pratoasciutto, Vino da Tavola Rosso Dolcetto. Sweet-tasting fruit, VA, needs food at the Natural Wine Fair, Borough Market 15-17 May 2011.

MONFERRATO ROSSO DOC, PECORANERA | The name means ‘black sheep’. / / 2003 Vino da Tavolo Rosso Nice sweet fruit at the Natural Wine Fair, Borough Market 15-17 May 2011. / 2004 Vino da Tavolo Rosso 75% Freisa, 25% Dolcetto, Barbera, Merlot. Crisp but with some brett at the Real Wine Fair, London Tuesday 22nd May 2012. / 2004 Very dry, very sour, drying out at the Real Wine Fair 2016.


Tenuta Grillo, Strada Maranchetti, 6 – I-15010 Gamalero (AL = Alessandria), Italy / Tel+39 0131.709176


Real Wine Fair 2016, Tobacco Dock, London 17-18th April.