The name Zonin represents one of the most successful and largest private wine companies in Italy. Having been in the hands of one family for seven generations, it is characterised by the philosophy of being able to offer customers the best from Italy’s traditional winegrowing regions. As a result, Zonin owns vineyards from Friaul to Sicily - a unique Italy competency.
Italy’s unbelievable wine diversity presents a challenge to every wine retailer. The challenge is even greater, however, for a wine grower, who wants to develop vineyards in all of the top regions.Such an endeavour, in addition to a great deal of experience, would require sensitivity for every terroir, every regional wine culture, and every grape variety, unless the goal is to produce replaceable wines without any character. Patience would also be required, since there is only one harvest each year. It would be a project that would require many years, a true lifework. It is the lifework of Gianni Zonin.
The beginnings of viniculture in the Zonin family date back to the year 1821 in Gambellara, a small town in Venetia, which today, incidentally, is also a DOC. The Zonins worked in the vineyards, but it was not until 1921, exactly 100 years later, when Domenico Zonin founded the vineyard, which is the core of the family’s empire today. Domenico Zonin died at a very old age in 2001. His nephew Gianni, born in 1938, became the company’s president in 1967. In addition to having studied oenology, he also had a law degree, which his mother advised him to do. Gianni worked tirelessly towards making his vision become a reality. He invested in the family’s vineyard, but also gradually bought other vineyards in other winegrowing regions, “so that we could offer our customers a complete range of quality Italian wine from seven of the best wine regions in Italy.” In 1997, he was able to bring a highly competent technical director on board, the internationally renowned oenologist Franco Giacosa. It is certainly not an overstatement that Gianni Zonin, who was honoured by the Italian President in 1996 as “Cavaliere del Lavoro”, has made a great contribution to Italy’s viniculture with his support of autochthonous grape varieties.
The Zonin family characterises its empire, which consists of nine vineyards in Italy and even a vineyard in the United States. Domenico Zonin, who studied oenology in California at the renowned Davis University and in Bordeaux, joined the company in 1999 and became vice president in 2006. His brother Francesco is also a vice president. He is in charge of marketing and sales and is also an avid blogger (“Wine is love” blog). Michele Zonin, the youngest of the brothers, the financial controller of the company.
The Zonin vineyards are, in addition to the founding vineyard in Gambellara, the following: Castello del Poggio, 180 hectares, located in the Asti region in the Piemont, and produces Asti DOCG, Moscato d’Asti DOCG and other Piemont wines (Dolcetto, Barbera and other autochthonous varieties such as the Grignolino); Tenuta del Bosco, Lombardy, is located in the Oltrepò Pavese region, on a 152-hectare winegrowing area, it cultivates Bonarda and even Riesling among other varieties; and Tenuta Ca‘ Bolani in Aquileia represents the Friaul region, producing hearty red wines and juicy white wines. Zonin’s vineyards in Friuli amounts to 634 hectares, making this the Northern Italy’s largest single estate vineyard.In Tuscany, Zonin is represented with three vineyards: The Abbazia Monte Oliveto is located in the vicinity of San Gimignano and is a former abbey from the 13th century, and in addition to excellent wines, offers some very nice holiday apartments; Castello d’Albola in the Chianti Classico region is a venerable building from the 15th century (winegrowing area: 157 hectares); and Rocca di Montemassi is located in the Maremma region, close to the Mediterranean coast. In Salento, the Apulia region that produces the best wines, the Masseria Altemura features 130-hectare winegrowing area and 40-hectare olive groves that produce outstanding olive oil. The winery with its wonderful historicbuildingsjust opened recentlyanew.The Zonins have decided to cultivate indigenous grape varieties like Primitivo and Negroamaro on this beautiful spot. Sicily, one of the most dynamic Italian wine regions, is home to Feudo Principi di Butera, a vineyard located in the Southern province of Caltanissetta. The stately manor, whose name goes back to the first king of Sicily, has an impressive past. And there are the BarboursvilleVineyards in Virginia, USA. Located in a beautiful scenery, the estate pioneers in cultivating vines of different varietals on this terroir and houses a first-class restaurantand cozy cottages.
All vineyards are managed independently in order to fully preserve their identity. Together, however, they form a unique wine family made up of distinct personalities, who all feel part of a family, the Zonin family. More than 30 oenologists and agronomists work under the leadership of Chief Winemaker Stefano Ferrante, with the consultancy of Denis Dubourdieu, world wide famous winemaker and Oenology Professor at University of Bordeaux, to produce the best quality wines. With a 1,800-hectare vineyard, the house, in terms of area, is also one of the largest privately-owned producers in Italy. It should also be added that a great deal of vision was necessary here. Gianni Zonin recognised the potential of some winegrowing areas earlier than others and thus helped shape Italian viniculture.
Casa Vinicola Zonin S.p.A.
Via Borgolecco, 9
Tel.: +39 0444 640111
Fax: +39 0444 640204