The Gini family has roots in the Soave Classico region dating from the sixteenth century, and owns 25 hectares of vineyards situated on the very best hillside position of the appellation. Extremely low yields, low-interference viticulture, and devoted attention to the expression of the particular crus results in wines that are not only among the greatest Soaves but also among the great white wines of all Italy. Over the last 30 years, the Gini name has become synonymous with quality, but the road has certainly been a rocky one. For decades, Soave suffered from an image problem. A surge in popularity in the 1970s drove many estates to increase production in less-than-ideal vineyard areas. The result? Prices and quality plummeted and a glut of wine ruined the market for family-run wineries. Gini was one of few growers in the region to stay the course with their production of high-quality handmade wines, and their persistence paid off.
“In 1985, when I was 19 years old, we presented our Soave to the owners of great restaurants in Milan. As soon as they saw the labels they would say: ‘No! I don’t want to put a Soave on our wine list.’ Then, we would ask them to taste our Soave and many, surprised by the high quality of the wine, would change their minds. It would certainly have been easier for us to eliminate the name Soave from our labels, but we were, and still are, very attached to our region that we love deeply.” – Claudio Gini
The tradition of quality at the estate dates back to Sandro & Claudio’s grandfather, Giuseppe Gini, who was considered the preeminent winemaking expert in the region of Monteforte d’Alpone. He was an innovator – the first in the Soave region to age his wines in chestnut casks – whose skill in the cellar was highly regarded by his peers. When Giuseppe passed away prematurely, his son Olinto took the reigns of the winery at the young age of 16. To make a living, he would sell his Soave in Verona, Vicenza, and the surrounding areas with a horse-drawn cart; sometimes so tired from the day that he would fall asleep with only the horse to guide him home. Olinto’s passion for viticulture and winemaking was passed to his two sons, who run the winery today along with Sandro’s son Matteo.