The Umani Ronchi estate has been owned by the Bianchi-Bernetti family since 1957 and is run by Michele Bernetti with his father Massimo. They are located in Cupramontana in the Marche region on the east coast of Central Italy, and also produce wine from neighbouring Abruzzo. This is essentially a tale of two regions and two grape varieties, one white and one red. They having a total of 210 hectares under vine all farmed sustainably and organically in these two regions. They are passionate about the environment and use light glass. Their synthetic cane sugar stoppers are 100% recyclable and their energy is supplied by a photovoltaic array. In the central-northern part of Marche between Jesi and Fano Umani Ronchi have six vineyards in the Verdicchio Hills and here Verdicchio, that great white grape of Marche, reigns supreme.
Le Busche Vineyard in Montecarotto is planted with 19.5 hectares of Verdicchio and 1h of Chardonnay on very deep, medium-textured clayey soils at between 250 and 300 metres above sea level.
Serra Dei Conti Vineyard in San Sebastianao has 26.5h of Verdicchio and 1.5h of Chardonnay on deep clay and silt calcareous soils, planted at between 200 and 250 metres above sea level.
Villa Bianchi Vineyard in Maiolati Spontini is planted at between 100 and 150 metres with 7.5h of Verdicchio and 2.5h of Sauvignon Blanc on clay and silt calcareous soils with alluvial pebbles.
Monte Schiavo Vineyard in Maiolati Spontini is under vine with 10h of Verdicchio, 2.5h of Sauvignon Blanc and 1.5h of Merlot on clayey calcareous soils with alluvial pebbles at between 100 and 150 metres above sea level.
Torre Vineyard in Cupramontana has almost 9h planted exclusively with Verdicchio on very deep, medium-textured clayey soils at between 250 and 350 metres.
Follonica Vineyard in San Paolo Di Jesi has 13h of Verdicchio and 1h of Sauvignon Blanc planted at between 200 and 250 metres on very deep clayey soils.
In Conero on the Marche coast three vineyards are under vine with red grape varieties. The climate here is special, mitigated by the proximity to the sea, and in this area the Montepulciano grape variety goes by the name of Rosso Conero.
San Lorenzo Vineyard in Osimo has 30 hectares of Montepulciano, 1h of Sangiovese, 2 hectares of Cabernet Sauvignon and 2h of Merlot on clay and silty very calcareous soils at between 100 and 150 metres above sea level.
The Saline Vineyard in Ancona is under vine with 10h of Montepulciano, 3h of Cabernet Sauvignon and 3h of Merlot, planted at between 100 and 150 metre above sea level on deep clay and silt calcareous soils.
Piantate Lunghe Vineyard in Ancona is planted at between 150 and 200 metres above sea level on clayey soils,which are sandy in parts, calcareous and fairly pebbly, with 8 hectares of Montepulciano, and 1 hectare of Sangiovese.
Abuzzo is 100 kilometres south of Marche, and here the Montepulciano grape is the undisputed king, cultivated by Umani Ronchi in the traditional pergola training system of the region.
The Monti Pagano Vineyard in Roseto degli Abruzzi e Morro d'Oro is under vine with 23h of Montepulciano, 2 hectares of Trebbiano and 2h of Pecorino, planted at between 150 and 200 metres on clayey, in parts sandy and calcareous soils with a small fraction of alluvial pebbles.
From from this array of vineyards, with their diverse altitudes, aspects, microclimates and soil types, a truly impressive portfolio of wines is produced. Umani Ronchi coax the very best from Verdicchio and Montepulciano with low yields and attention to detail in the vineyards and the cellar. The wines are masterfully interpreted and skilfully handcrafted to demonstrate the quality that can be achieved from these often overlooked regions and grape varieties of Italy.