Founded in 1950 by Giustino Bisol, Ruggeri’s story is one of innovation founded on tradition; the project has trailed a pioneering path while relying on the experience of the Bisol family and on the expertise of the growers who, through generations, shaped the winemaking tradition of Valdobiadenne. The farmers are indeed Ruggeri’s true, extended family, bound by a simple mission: nurturing the best fruit to produce quality sparkling wines that speak of the land and people of the Valdobbiadene hills. ‘Our grape suppliers represent the first element in the long quality chain that begins in the vineyard, and finds its ultimate expression in wine lovers’ glasses,’ says Gianluca Tognon, chief agronomist at Ruggeri.
A deep sense of community, mutual respect and trust connects the winery to its partner growers, which in turn makes it easy to ensure consistent viticultural practices across all plots, supporting a collective effort to respect the truth of the vines. Tenacity, passion and experience are the values that, today as in 1950, shape Ruggeri’s core philosophy and run through the veins of all those who are part of the company’s wider family.
Preserving a unique terroir
It is in the heart of the Treviso area, in eastern Veneto, that the Valdobbiadene hills define a separate DOCG prized for the quality, freshness and elegance of its Proseccos. This landscape of heroic viticulture was the place chosen for the Ruggeri project as it offered the possibility for quality and distinctiveness that Giustino Bisol sought, and has lived on through his son Paolo and granddaughter Isabella. It was here that Ruggeri established itself as a pioneering innovator – the first to produce a wine exclusively from centennial vines (Vecchie Viti), one of first in the DOCG to release an Extra-Brut style, the first within the perimeter of Prosecco Superiore to age a wine on the lees for 48 months following secondary fermentation.
The Valdobbiadene hills, with their dramatic steep slopes, are recognised for their importance as both a natural and cultural landscape having become a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2019. From a viticultural point of view the area is no less of a treasure with its unique soils and old vineyards. Centennial Glera vines stand magnificent, gnarled sculptures shaped by men and time, steeped in history and yielding fruit with complex and nuanced aromas. The soils, meanwhile, are a record of rich geological history; the hills were once the bed of a warm sea and the undulating slopes have a wealth of marine deposits and fossils, creating a subtract of amazing mineral composition and structure.
Aware of the singularity of this viticultural patrimony and the need to preserve it for future generations, Ruggeri has been on a path to promote and consolidate sustainable practices across all aspects of its operation, working closely with its growers on the field. ‘For us, it is of extraordinary importance to preserve this unique growing area and to protect the ecosystem by creating the best conditions for excellent production and, above all, for sustainable quality.’ explains Torgon. The company has developed a training programme that gives partner growers a deeper knowledge of pruning techniques best suited to each plant, of sustainability standards, and of natural disease prevention.
The power of the bee
Among Ruggeri’s leading sustainability efforts was, in 2019, the adoption of the National Quality System of Integrated Production (SQNPI). The certification programme ensures agricultural processes that respect the national highest standards of sustainability, with minimal use of fertilisers and phytosanitary products, while reducing environmental impact and promoting biodiversity.
The first clear outcome of this ongoing work is seen on the labels of the 2020 vintage of Ruggeri’s Cartizze DOCG Brut and Dry wines, the first to display the SQNPI’s recognisable bee logo. This further reinforces the distinctiveness of the wines hailing from Cartizze, unanimously considered Valdobbiadene’s most prestigious terroir, not unlike a Grand Cru site.
With this move, Ruggeri not only gives an added proof of quality, but also a clear sign that its passion and pioneering spirit remain the energy that inspires an enduring quest for quality.
Cartizze Brut, Valdobbiadene Superiore di Cartizze DOCG
100% Glera, 11.5% abv
The first Ruggeri release with SQNPI certification, this elegant sparkling balances aromatic intensity with freshness and length. White stone fruits are topped by floral notes of wild flowers and apple blossom, with a gentle lining of mediterranean herbs. On the palate, the soft texture is supported by a subtle citrus zing and a delicate mineral pull.
Excellent as an aperitif or served alongside a seafood platter, sushi or creamy risotto. Will also pair perfectly with a mezze spread or a summer salad.
Available in the UK through Enotria & Coe
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