DÀGALA BORROMEO: HEART OF SICILY
The forty hectares of Dàgala Borromeo, stretching out at about 90 metres above sea level on the meandering hills of the Trapani countryside, have their base in an extremely deep sandy-loam terroir—ideal for the plants to fully develop their root systems. The estate lies about 15 kilometres from the coast, a location that, like Pianoro Cuddìa, assures its vineyards of Inzolia and Nero d’Avola a dry, well-ventilated microclimate which stands out for its marked difference in temperature between day and night. The two labels of Chiaramonte, white and red, are both products of this—both being single varietal wines. Dàgala Borromeo is a symbol of ‘Sicilian-ness’. Within the range of a few hundred metres it contains all the rich biodiversity of the island’s viticulture. It is the kingdom of the native varieties where, according to the different conditions to which they are exposed, vines of the same variety can express different nuances. As there is not a single interpretative frame of reference, it has been people, who with their precision have followed nature’s rhythms, thereby managing to create from one divided parcel of land many different interpretations.
Dàgala Borromeo is one of Firriato’s most important estates. It is a treasure trove for the native varieties of Nero d’Avola and Inzolia, which are grown using the antique method of goblet vine training. It is a magnificent, untouched location. Watching the array of green foliage appear in its vineyards as nature comes into bloom, after the dormant winter period, tells the story of a farming tradition of vine cultivation that has made Trapani the most densely vine-planted province in all of Italy—a tradition the Di Gaetano family have been able to shine new light on.
The estate is characterised by both undulating and flat land and the vineyards enjoy a dry, well-ventilated microclimate which is marked by a heightened difference in temperature between day and night. The element at the foundation of Dàgala Borromeo is its unique terroir. This gives the wines produced in this area a structural complexity. Land which is adequately managed using focussed farming operations, like wild ground cover— a process consisting of regularly cutting the grass which naturally grows in the vineyard— allows the cultivation of quality grapes and combats soil erosion.