Tenuta i Monti, già Castel Crescente nel 1333
The History of The Podere
The history of this Podere from its rather pretentious sounding name Castel Crescente - though known locally simply as ‘I Monti’ (the hills/mounds/mountains) is as simple to tell as it is extraordinary. In the ancient creeks of the river Panaro, rises a parcel of land of roughly 16 hectares. To this day the land is divided into ‘centurie’; square fields divided into multiples each of one hundred by one hundred metres, the system used by the ancient Romans (44° 44’ 30.97” N 11° 06’ 23.75” E).
To this end, nothing extraordinary here, were it not for the fact that at each corner of the rectangle, from the flat landscape, rise four small hills which have miraculously survived, revealing today what was once a Roman camp. These mounds are the result of the creation of a ditch 20 metres wide, 6 metres deep, dug for defensive purposes, and on top of which the sentries could monitor the countryside.
The Podere Castel Crescente itself is first mentioned in 1200, before the establishment even of the nearby village of Ravarino. Throughout history it belonged to the most local important families; even the Duke of Modena kept this very parcel for himself when, in gratitude for help in battle, he granted the surrounding lands to the noble Rangoni family. Why? The answer is simple, because on what today in wine making slang is called ‘terroir’, the characteristics of the soil of these mounds are unique in that it originates from a much deeper geological layer.
My father acquired the land, initially because of its beauty and distinctiveness within the surrounding countryside. Only subsequently did he unveil these characteristics when coming across its past, as meticulously laid out by a local historian, the Maestro Lodi, to whom my family will always be grateful. It was this discovery which lead my father to plant the vineyard. When I, at the time still a student, became aware of all this, I decided to dedicate my life to becoming a viticulturist and winemaker. As always, we learn from history.