Elisabetta Foradori is a big deal with a big heart. Her wines are the result of not submitting to a world of dull, mass produced, pallid wine. They are the result of a long journey to achieve true biodiversity in the vineyard, genetic diversity of her beloved teroldego grape, and to capture and express the voice of her terroir. She is sincere, dedicated- she sets a standard for winemaking that many aspire to meet. When young winemakers say they look up to Foradori, it is because of the decades of tireless effort she has put into her land and her teroldego.
Grown primarily in Trentino’s Campo Rotaliano region in the northeast of Italy and rarely seen elsewhere, it’s a somewhat obscure grape- a genetic relative of Syrah and perhaps Pinot Noir. It is defined by its strength and structure, combined with plentiful juicy, dark fruit, subtle spice, and soft tannins.
At the age of 19, following the sudden passing of her father, she took over the family winery out of a sense of duty. As a young winemaker, she sought technical perfection, aiming to produce flawless wines. While she was committed to teroldego, she lost her connection to the land. The state of winemaking production in the region at the time was one of quantity over quality, and the teroldego clone of the area, was a prime example of that. It had lost its character. Elisabetta, through massal selection, sought to restore the genetic diversity of this indigenous grape. Through this process, she dove deep into the history of teroldego, and came out the other side a changed person. She needed to watch and listen to the earth.
100% Teroldego. This is the core red of Foradori: the first and only one to be bottled back in 1960 and still the largest production, from 10 hectares of vines planted from 1956 to 2005 on the flat, sunny, well-drained Camp Rotaliano plateau on sandy, Dolomitic limestone soils. Some of the vines are still pergola-trained, while newer plantings are on wires in the Guyot style; the farming is certified-biodynamic (as for all of their vineyards). The fruit is harvested by hand, destemmed with some whole clusters left intact (varies by vintage) and fermented spontaneously with indigenous yeasts and with no sulfur (until racking and bottling). Aging takes place in cement tanks and used foudres of 20-40 hectoliters for about a year.