Located in the heart of both DOP Manduria and DOP Lizzano is Tenute Eméra, the largest of Claudio Quarta’s three wineries. Resting on the picturesque Ionian coast, the estate covers about 80 hectares, nearly 50 of which were planted with vineyards in 2007. The name of the winery pays homage to Hemera, the Greek Goddess who represents the day. This is both a tribute to the Ancient Greek culture and a reference to the geographical location of the estate. In fact, the vineyard is located on the Salento peninsula, which happens to be the easternmost edge of Italy and the first to embrace the warm rays of the rising sun. Immersed in lush vineyards is the Historic Casino Nitti, a lodge once owned by the first President of Italy following World War I, Francesco Saverio Nitti (1919-20). Inside, the ancient millstones, dating to the early 1900s, have been restored and are now used by guests to relive the excitement of the traditional grape crush; done by foot during the annual celebration of ‘Lu Capucanali’.
VINEYARD AND WINEMAKING PHILOSOPHY
In addition to the native varietals Primitivo, Negroamaro, and Fiano, international varietals such as Syrah, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Chardonnay were planted following strict parameters established through scientific studies of micro-zoning. Here, in collaboration with the School of Agriculture at the University of Milan, perhaps the greatest vineyard of biodiversity in the world has been designed, organized, planted, and continually studied. This living laboratory of viticulture gives root to around 500 minor varieties – predominantly Caucasus and Mediterranean origin. The vineyard proudly aims to preserve a unique source of biodiversity while providing a way to study the potential quality of vines.