On La Castellada hill, in Oslavia, in the province of Gorizia, less than five kilometers from the border with Slovenia, stands the homonymous winery La Castellada whose history has its roots at the end of the Second World War. It all began in the 50s when Giuseppe Bensa bought some vineyards and an adjoining building with the intention of transforming it into a rustic tavern in which to sell the bulk wines produced there. The generational leap occurred more than 30 years later when Giorgio and Nicolò, sons of Giuseppe, abandoned the project of the tavern to dedicate themselves exclusively to the production of wines bottled in their paternal winery, under the brand La Castellada. Today the winery still sees Giorgio and Nicolò firmly at the helm, although, since 2009, Matteo and Stefano, sons of Nicolò, have entered the company.
The owned vineyards extend over a land that, in addition to being the scene of the tragedy of the First World War, as evidenced by the bodies of over 58,000 soldiers buried in the nearby Military Shrine (built in 1938), is particularly suited to viticulture. The soils are composed of a mix of marl and submarine sandstone of Eocene origin (the traditional Collio Ponca), while the climate is characterized by a balanced alternation between fresh winds, from the nearby Julian Alps, and Mediterranean, coming from the nearby Gulf of Trieste. In this pedoclimatic setting the winery has a total of about ten hectares equally divided between an area with plants of about 50 years of age, with a lower planting density (3500 vines per hectare), and a higher yield per hectare (about one and a half kilos per plant), and a more recent one, about 25 years of age, with a higher density (6000 vines per hectare) and a lower yield (less than one kilogram per plant).
The production philosophy followed is natural and includes, in the vineyard, the exclusive and moderate use of sulfur and copper, the grassing of the rows and operations devoted to the enrichment of biodiversity. In the winery tradition and naturalness go hand in hand again and include the maceration on the skins (also of white wines) in truncated tanks, spontaneous fermentation, by means of indigenous yeasts, the lack of temperature control and a very low use of sulfites, as in the case of their famous Bianco della Castellada.
It is a blend of Pinot Grigio (50%), Chardonnay (30%) and Sauvignon (20%) from vines of different ages (22/45 years) manually harvested in the second half of September. While Pinot Grigio is pressed immediately and then fermented in barriques of various passage, Chardonnay and Sauvignon macerate on the skins for four days before being decanted into barrique where they complete the fermentation. The period of aging includes 11 months in barrique, on the fine lees, 12 more, after assembly, in stainless steel tanks and, after bottling, without filtration, 12 final months in glass.
The 2010 vintage shows an intense straw-yellow color with amber streaks, and an olfactory fan that opens on notes of hawthorn, dried apricot, nectarine and vanilla, followed by chlorophyll, strawberry tree honey, box flower and helichrysum, with final echoes of carpentry. Il palato è generoso e balsamico, con una evidente morbidezza e la giusta freschezza balsamica a equilibrare il sorso; il tutto arricchito dal ritorno della frutta gialla, dalla clorofilla e dalle spezie che accompagnano il sorso a una chiusura di ottima lunghezza.