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Meet the Perusini Family

The eastern hills of Friuli are well respected as a home to some of Friuli-Venezia Giulia's most prestigious vineyards. Whilst the 18th century saw such extreme popularity of French wine varieties, the traditional Friulian varietals were preserved. Some of them thanks to the Perusini family.

Following the pioneering work carried out in the eighteenth century by Count Fabio Asquini, Giacomo Perusini selected the grapes to grow in the Colli Orientali and revived one of the traditional varieties, Picolit. His studies and vine-growing were abruptly concluded by the arrival of the first world war to Italy.

After Giacomo's premature death, the estate was left in the capable hands of his wife Giuseppina, a writer and painter, who continued his work and re-launched Friulian wines to the market. Her son's Gaetano and Giampaolo followed the family footsteps by studying art and wine alike to improve vine-growing and wine varieties in Friuli. Giampaolo's best work includes improving the Ribolla Gialla, another vine species native to Friuli.

Although the old family house, Rocca Bernarda, was passed onto the Order of Malta, the family tradition continues in the hills of Gramogliano.

Today the estate is ran by Giampaolo's daughter Teresa, an art historian like her uncle. She is a keen cultivator who divides her time between her studies and running the estate together with her husband Giacomo de Pace and their three sons.

The Land 

The “Friuli Colli Orientali” DOC territory includes the hilly area in the province of Udine, covering a total of more than 2,000 hectares of vineyards.

The Perusini vineyards are one of the only fifty Italian vineyards mentioned in  “I vignaioli storici”, a book by Luigi Veronelli. Veronelli was an Italian Italian gastronome, wine critic and intellectual who believed that great wine was born in  the vineyard. He was one of the first people to introduce the importance of the terroir, working with the soil itself and carefully selecting grapes. 

Owing to the quality of the soil and the family's improvements based on their studies, it is no wonder that their vineyards made it into the prestigious selection.

Even today, the family strive to grow their vineyards in the most sustainable way possible by focussing their production on organic principles.  Despite the fact that the terraces in the hills make mechanisation difficult, the Perusini company does not use chemical weeding and only the cleaning between the vines is carried out mechanically.

Environmental sustainability is one of the company’s core values, as they believe that it is our duty to leave a healthy ecosystem for future generations.

The Grapes

The one of a kind flavour of Perusini wines comes from their careful selection and analysis of the vines they grow. Their exceptional Merlot Black Label was planted in 1944 using various clones selected by the founder Giacomo.

Today the vineyard has been replicated to produce a Merlot that is derived solely through mass selection of the three most characteristic ancient genotypes. In a joint project with the University of Udine, the Perusini company identified and replanted several ancient clones that had been present in their winery for more than a 100 years.

The Perusinis are strong believers of cultivating native grape varieties that surpass the norm and create beauty and notes that connote their place of origin.  Their success started rediscovering the noble ancient vine of Friuli, the Picolit. They were the first to select it and cultivate it on the the Colli Orientali and the first to introduce it to the rest of the world. 

 Discover Perusini Wines →

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