Agri Segretum began twenty years ago on a rolling hill with a spectacular view over the Tiber River Valley. We’d found our little village, our olive groves, and our medieval churches. Seemed like a good idea to plant some grapes as well.
There were no other organic vineyards around, and the locals were a bit surprised as we planted Sangiovese and Sagrantino. Why didn’t we plant those international grapes like Pinot and Chardonnay? Precisely. We wanted to be true to the sandy Umbrian soil. We planted what has grown here for centuries. No big machines or hefty tractors. We went back in by hand and tied up the vines, culled the fruit to grow better quality, and planted rye and clover between the rows to enrich the fields. And then we repeated this. Year after year. Along the way, our children grew up on the rough and tumble soccer fields of Umbria. Played hide-and-seek among the narrow streets of Collazzone. Feasted on gelato in the piazza at midnight while grandparents talked over a game of cards. And we all got mighty used to sitting around a lunch table of pasta al ragu’ and olive oil from our fields.