Luckily, we couldn’t have asked for a better experience at La Lastra. Even in the dead of winter with barren vineyards, we had an incredible time and learned far more than we could have ever wished to know about wine.
Before arriving in Italy, we were expecting to be wowed by the beauty of the vineyards, hand-picking grapes from the vines, etc.; you know the deal. In reality, while the vineyards were beautiful (even in the winter), it was the stories of how wine production and plant growth worked that left us the most fascinated.
For instance, when you go to the grocery store and see an organic sign on display, what does that really mean? Everyone knows what organic means, but is there any truth to that? How seriously is it taken, or is it just another buzzword to push more products? In the US, the term is quite loosely stated, but the word organic is no joke when it comes to the vineyards in Italy.
While taking a stroll with the operator at La Lastra, we’d come to learn that organic was seriously organic. Instead of harsh pesticides being used to promote better field growth and reduce weeds, copper was subsisted as a more natural alternative. We’d later go on to hear about plant spacing, species and proximity, and all sorts of farming techniques that leave one with plenty of fascination.
After a short but well-informed lesson on the art of producing wine, including a tour of the storage tanks, we sat down for lunch and, finally, a drink. While being served multiple wines, we sampled the different varieties of grapes, ages, etc. It was remarkable to test a young vs. well-aged wine and compare the difference.
Overall, we were expecting the wine to be the wow part of our tour, but in all honesty, it was the producer’s passion. Couple that with the beauty of the roaming hillsides of vineyards, and you’ve got one glorious day to relax and sip to your heart’s content.