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Piedmont, Italy
Elio Altare

Elio Altare is one of Italy's greatest winemakers. His wines have come to define the changes that have taken place in Barolo over the last 30 years. He inspired a generation of younger producers to commit to quality in the vineyards and bottle their own estate wines. The changes Elio championed in the 70's: green harvesting, organic farming, and shorter macerations are commonplace today and have made Barolo a more rich, diverse, and higher quality wine- producing region. Altare Barolo, Barolo Arborina and Barolo Brunate are among the most prized wines of the area and put the supple, fragrant qualities of the La Morra commune on display. They're sensuous, rich, and age-worthy wines. In 2005 Elio released his first vintage of Barolo Cerretta, from the Serralunga commune in the eastern valley, where the soils influence the wines in very different ways than La Morra. It will be great to witness his hands and philosophies at play with vineyards from another commune that is counter point to the style he is used to. Elio is a tireless spirit and still today is striving to push the boundaries of what Nebbiolo can do. He is experimenting with a few barrels of a 100% hand destemmed Barolo from the Arborina vineyard and has recently acquired a few rows of vines in Cannubi. Elio at work in Cannubi is going to be a tremendous thing to witness, look for that release in the fall of 2016. 

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Farming Practice:    FARMED ORGANIC     hide info


Az. Agr. Elio Altare - no pesticides, fungicides or chemical treatments of any kind are used in the vineyard. Copper sulfite is used only in wet years to control fungus. Canopy management and low yields are employed every year to control sun exposure, and promote efficient aeration and drying for the clusters. This yields fruit that is more naturally resistant to disease. 

Altare vineyards are shared with other growers in La Morra.  Az. Agr Veglio, Az. Agr. Corino all farm their holdings directly next to the Altare and farm organic as well.  It is a communal effort to organic farming in these vineyards.

Cover crops and grass are allowed to grow between the rows and serves many purposes: First to control erosion and allow for work in the vineyards if conditions are wet. 

Second it is turned into the soil to maintain natural levels of nitrogen and grass roots keep the topsoil soft and aerated allowing better drainage and adds to the micro-bacterial composition to the topsoil. 

Third to add biodiversity and natural competition between the vine and the natural surroundings.  This practice coupled with dry farming will push the vines to 'go deep' and extend their roots down into the sub soils and establish a vineyard system that is stronger and more stable in dry years.  It should be noted that both the natural forest and hazelnut orchards are around the vineyards in the lower parts and in northerly exposures.

No chemical or processed fertilizers are applied to the vineyards, cow manure is used every few years to increase organic compounds in the topsoil and further promote micro-bacterial growth.

Chemical 'Kill' Pesticides are not used - pheromone strips are used when 'bad' insects counts are high - this causes 'sexual confusion' limiting but not exterminating their population - this process also maintains 'good' insect population.

The Altare's dedication to organic farming is very important to them and is based simply by the fact they raised and live on the farm, in and amongst the vineyards - chemical treatments would be directly harmful to them and their workers.  Additionally they believe they owe a service to future generations of their family to maintain the natural health of their land and farm.

And they are the 'First' consumers of their products and the family gardens are all planted around the vineyards.

In the cellars the Altare family uses only the naturally occurring, 'ambient' yeast for fermentation, the wines are not clarified or fined with any agents. 

No color agents are used in the production of the wines.


Elio Altare
Elio Altare


Barolo 2011
Barolo Brunate 2008
Barolo Arborina 2011
La Villa 2010
Larigi 2012
Giarborina 2012
Insieme 2008
Barolo Cerretta 2009
Dolcetto d'Alba 2014
Barbera d'Alba 2014




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