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Valdo – Reinventing Prosecco with the traditional method

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As it approaches its centenary, this historic producer is breaking new ground with traditional-method Prosecco and a luxurious new venue for prosecco lovers to visit.

In the unspoilt landscape of Valdobbiadene, in the Veneto region of northeast Italy, Valdo has been producing exceptional sparkling wines since the 1920s. Founded in 1926 as the Society Anonima Vini Superiori and purchased by Sergio Bolla in 1938, the family-owned company has developed an impressive knack for making Proseccos of real individuality and style: fruit-driven without being cloying; structured without being austere; and refreshing to the core – that’s quite a knack.

Casa Valdo farmhouse at Valdo winery in Valdobbiadene, in the Veneto region of northeast Italy

The restored Casa Valdo, a 19th-century farmhouse nestled close to the famed Cartizze area of Valdobbiadene

A return to the traditional method

Yet Valdo is far more than simply a reliable source of high-quality bubbly. One of Valdobbiadene’s foremost innovators and pioneers, Valdo released its first traditional-method label in late 2005, a game-changer in the world of Italian sparkling wine: Valdo Numero 10 Metodo Classico Valdobbiadene DOCG. While the vast majority of prosecco is made via the tank method, Numero 10 instead undergoes a secondary fermentation in bottle and is matured in Valdo’s cellars for at least six months after disgorgement.

The result is a wine of tremendous purity and elegance, with distinct notes of honeysuckle, yeast and brioche on the mid-palate. The secret to its exceptional depth and character? Meticulous winemaking, generations of expertise and all the benefits of the labour-intensive traditional method play their part.

The other essential ingredient is terroir. For Numero 10, Valdo uses only Glera grapes, grown in the calcareous soils of Valdobbiadene; the vineyards sit on southeast-facing slopes 250 metres above sea level. These exceptional raw materials are then transformed into Valdo Numero 10, as the wine ages on its lees and autolysis slowly works its magic. Quality, not quantity, is the overriding aim.

Valdo Numero 10 Metodo Classico Valdobbiadene DOCG

For Valdo’s first traditional-method label, Valdo Numero 10 Metodo Classico Valdobbiadene DOCG, the winery uses only Glera grapes, grown in the calcareous soils of Valdobbiadene.

Restoring the villa to its 19th-century splendour

Building on this success, the family set out to create a second traditional-method label: Vigna Pradase Metodo Classico Valdobbiadene DOCG. Yet the project would take many years to come to fruition; it began with the restoration of Casa Valdo, a 19th-century farmhouse nestled close to the famed Cartizze area of Valdobbiadene.

The villa stands among 1.5ha of 40-50 year old vines, including various Glera clones as well as the treasured indigenous varieties Bianchetta, Perera and Verdiso. The beautiful, undulating terrain offers excellent drainage and mineral-rich, clay-limestone soils, making it the perfect place to craft site-specific, high-quality wines.

Vigna Pradase Metodo Classico Valdobbiadene DOCG Prosecco at Valdo winery in Valdobbiadene, in the Veneto region of northeast Italy

Single-vineyard Vigna Pradase blend uses at least 85% Glera Tonda and Glera Lunga, as well as touches of Bianchetta, Perera and Verdiso

Rediscovering traditional varieties and time-honoured techniques

From these varieties, the single-vineyard Vigna Pradase blend was born: at least 85% Glera Tonda and Glera Lunga, augmented with touches of Bianchetta, Perera and Verdiso. According to Valdo’s oenologist Gianfranco Zanon, this trio of traditional Prosecco varieties – little-used today – add structure and freshness to the cuvée. This traditional technique allowed winemakers of the past to adapt to the different conditions of each vintage.

Vigna Pradase pairs this tradition with the benefits of modern technology, such as a cool fermentation in stainless steel, to extract maximum freshness and flavour from the grapes, before the wine’s secondary fermentation in bottle. The wine is then aged on its lees for at least 24 months before disgorgement. A true labour of love, only 6,000 bottles are produced each year.

The Vigna Pradase style is understated and refined – a wine that expresses its single-vineyard origins with razor-sharp precision: impeccably fresh, polished and full of elegance. The bouquet is open and complex: aromas of white peach, yellow flowers, almonds and jasmine rise gracefully out of the glass. Subtle fruit, ripe acidity and a complex palate with notes of brioche make Vigna Pradase perfectly suited to food pairing – although it can also make a very decadent sundowner!

Room at Casa Valdo hotel at Valdo winery in Valdobbiadene, in the Veneto region of northeast Italy

Casa Valdo has six exquisitely furnished rooms that can be reserved by guests

Welcoming visitors to Casa Valdo

Now, the Bolla family has decided to welcome oenophiles to Casa Valdo. Expertly restored to its original grandeur, the villa offers an unforgettable experience in the heart of Veneto. Six exquisitely furnished rooms can be reserved at the property, each named after one of Valdo’s renowned wines.

Amid some of the region’s most picturesque countryside, Casa Valdo is a paradise for lovers of the great outdoors, and the perfect place to come back to after hiking or cycling through the hills of Valdobbiadene. But more than anything else, Casa Valdo is a destination which combines two great Italian passions, wine and food.


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