Historical references matter for the Bartolomei brothers, Massimiliano and Walter. They work hard to uphold the reputation for quality of wines produced by the Ciù Ciù estate, which has been in the family since it was founded in 1970 by their parents, Natalino and Anna Bartolomei. The sons take their responsibilities for developing the business seriously.
The Ciù Ciù winery sits in the Piceno hills in Offida in the Marche region, halfway between the Adriatic Sea and the Sibillini Mountains, and boasts 180 hectares of vines. Processes combine long-standing methods with the latest technology to produce the excellence the brothers strive to achieve. Since the 1990s, the estate has employed the latest organic and biodynamic techniques, ensuring a consistently high standard of output that is achieved through natural methods.
Alongside the engrained practices, there’s also a nod to mythology with the reds including the Bacchus which takes its name from the Roman god of wine. This is an excellent example of wine from this region, made from a blend that is roughly half Sangiovese and half Montepulciano grapes. It is a well-structured wine with characteristics of fruit, predominantly strawberries and cherries, that combine with a hit of liquorice for a palate-whetting juiciness.
Of the whites, we particularly like the Pecorino which is a balanced wine made with grapes that are typical of this part of Italy. After dwindling away over many decades, the Pecorino variety has made a comeback in recent years and is now thriving again among winemakers harking back to their roots. This particular example is clean and well-balanced, displaying aromas of banana, apple, hazelnut and plum, followed by a hint of vanilla. That combination produces a freshness that makes this wine a perfect accompaniment for seafood or risotto.
The growth in demand for wines such as these, which are true to the historic production methods of the region, shows the benefits of cultivating grape varieties that can flourish in their natural environment.
And one other link to tradition is in the name of the estate. Grandpa Bartolomei was a signalman on the railways. He inspired the name Ciù Ciù which is in Italian – as it is in English – the phonetic expression of the noise a train makes. With Massimiliano and Walter at the controls, the business remains firmly on track.