Upon tasting Poggerino’s wines for the first time on a trip to Italy as a 21 year old student travelling abroad, Charles Lazzara, the founder and president of Volio, was hooked. More than five years later, Poggerino became Volio’s very first producer, setting the bar admirably high for all those who followed. Poggerino's wines are produced organically, exclusively from their own grapes, and every step of wine production and marketing is carried out by the owners themselves. The owner, Piero Lanza, believes in an almost fanatical attention to vineyard work. His goal is to set the stage for healthy vines, and ultimately, beautiful wines, by caring for the land holistically, in rhythm with the seasons, and as custodian for its natural biodiversity and richness. The results are healthy grapes with the highest degree of concentration and ripeness, perfectly reflective of their unique Tuscan terroir. The wines produced combine a richness and concentration of fruit, acidity, and tannin—indispensable to the wine’s longevity—while their soft, ripe tannins allow the wine to be enjoyed early in its life. Poggerino’s 12 hectares of vineyards (almost all Sangiovese with one hectare of Merlot) face south-southwest and sit at 400-500 meters above sea level. The high elevation, direct sun exposure, and rocky “galestro” soil, providing optimal drainage for the vines’ roots, all combine to produce world-class Sangiovese. More recent plantings of Sangiovese on the estate have produced smaller grapes in smaller clusters, resulting in more concentrated sweetness and a higher skin to juice ratio. The resulting heftier tannins have lent themselves beautifully to Poggerino’s structured, refined style of winemaking and each vintage reveals new depths of Poggerino’s potential.
I stumbled into Fattoria Poggerino in 2002 as a student abroad. I had just turned 21 and my parents were able to make the trip to Italy from Indiana to visit me. My dad wanted to rent a car and hit up Chianti Classico… do a little driving and check out some wineries. He'd always appreciated wine, but tended to lean to California while wanting to understand and appreciate Italian reds - if for nothing else than the fact that our last name, Lazzara, has Italian heritage. We took a left and a right through the endless hills of Tuscany before arriving, by luck, to Radda in Chianti. Down another hill we found an "open" sign and headed up the gravel drive of Poggerino where I met Benedetta and Piero Lanza. They'd been handed down the property by their mother and father in the early '80s. I heard the story, tasted the wines and almost immediately had chills run down my spine... it was here I told my dad "if wine can be this good, maybe this would be a cool job for me". Fast forward to 2007, I take a break from working at a consulting firm to develop my business plan and head back to Poggerino. I told Piero I was ready to import his wines to the US and he asked where I was based. I said Colorado... to which he replied "where is that?"... roughly I explained it was between California and New York and I'd pay cash for the first pallet of wine. We've been great friends ever since!