Canelli and Asti Spumante
The tradition of Spumante wine
The excellence of Asti Spumante is fully represented by this component. It is a territory that makes the surrounding landscape unique, thanks to the well-finished vineyards shaped by the labor of farmers over the years.
It is the area where the history of the great italian sparkling wines began thanks to the continuous improvement of the growing and production techniques of Moscato Bianco vine variety.
The Piedmontese oenologist professor Federico Martinotti was the first who, back in 1895, applied the new vinification method through which this wine is produced. It was a first important step for launching the production of Piedmontese sparkling wine followed by a continuous refining of the techniques, among which the contribution of the French oenologist Charmat should be recalled, as he led to the present refined product.
The town of Canelli is taken as a milestone of this component due to its crucial role in the evolution of Asti Spumante.
It is a municipality with medieval foundations composed of a section called Villanova, built around the ancient fortified buildings, and of the “borgo” (ancient village). The latter developed by successive additions around the ancient medieval castle. The architectures of Canelli area are an evidence of the capability to adapt the sites to the changes and the needs of wine production cycle.
Martinotti’s research began in the second half of the nineteenth century just within the municipality. Inside the spaces commonly called “Cattedrali Sotterranee”, the first places of production of sparkling wine in the district. It consists of wide subterranean spaces, characterized by vaulted areas with facing bricks, whose shape and space distribution are due to the processes of production of sparkling wine.
Another small village is part of the site “Canelli and Asti Spumante”. It is a peculiar example of vernacular architecture strictly connected to wine-making culture. It is about the small upland village of Calosso, that has had the capability to maintain its medieval structure and its distinctive “crutin”, cellars carved from tufa and vaulted with bricks, used both for the domestic storage of bottles and food and as tanks or ice-houses. Their diffusion in Calosso village is rather extensive, so much that every house in the historic centre had one. The spaces had different sizes and were built between XVIII and XIX century.
“Canelli and Asti Spumante” area comprises 1236 vineyards altogether, primarily planted with white Muscat, 238 family-run vineyards specialized in the production of sparkling wine such as Canelli and “Cantina Sociale di Calosso”. The responsibility of distributing and promoting this unique product is conferred to Canelli and Atesana Regional Winehouse.