Deep along the Amalfi Coast lays, in scattered plots of terraced land, the Cantina di Marisa Cuomo, one of Southern Italy’s most premier coastal wineries. We are extremely proud to welcome them to The Grand Wine Tour and expand our unique wine experiences to include the extreme wine heritage of the coast.
The Amalfi Coast is a dream destination. The cliffside villages, winding roads, salty air and laidback vibe have propelled it to the top of the tourist bucket list, where it continues to remain year after year. But for all its seeming ease, living, let alone growing vines, on this steep peninsula is no easy task. It could be described as extreme.
Our newest winery, Marisa Cuomo, definitely agrees. However, in their eyes, the work is rewarded in the continuance of local wine traditions, stunning vistas, and amazing wine.
Extreme terroir, extreme wine
Carved into the rockfaces of the Amalfi Coast are the scattered plots of terraced land that make up the town of Furore. Above there is sky, below there is sea and jutting out of the blue in fragmented shades of green and yellow are the houses, gardens and vineyards that cling to the cliff. It is simultaneously breathtaking and nerve-racking to look at, but the locals are well accustomed to the steep heights and get on their day with little more than a shrug.
This is, by all means, an extreme terroir to grow vineyards. But the toil of extreme land is the gift of extreme wines. Marisa Cuomo classifies their range of nine labels as vini estremi, defined by heroic flavours that filled with the essence of sea and rock. These are not your average wine, but then again Furore is not an average place.
Native grapes, centuries of heritage
Marisa Cuomo has a relatively small production of around 50,000 bottles per year, all of which are made from native grapes protected under the Costa d’Amalfi DOC appellation. Their range includes four whites, four reds, and one rosé.
The grape varieties are hyper-local to the Amalfi Coast, such as Piedirosso, Pepella, and Ginestra, along with the use of Aglianico, a grape native to Campania. The vines grow on coastal terraces in pergolas and can only be harvested and maintained by hand due to the steepness of the cliffs. It is not uncommon to see donkeys and mules carrying full harvest baskets up the zig-zagged terraced hills. There is a certain element of stepping back in time; the traditional methods of harvesting and transporting the grapes continue to work the best.
Centuries of wine tradition continue to be bottled, offering a truly local taste of place and terroir that can only be found on the rocky shores of the Amalfi Coast.
A sight to see
It doesn’t take much to convince anyone a trip to the Amalfi Coast is worth it. However, often those trips begin and end on the coast’s most famous towns. With the private transportation The Grand Wine Tour can provide, venturing further down the coast to see the terraced vineyards and pergola vines becomes an easy must-do.
Visiting Marisa Cuomo is not like visiting most wineries. It is a sight to see, with wines to taste and lasting memories to be made.