Timeless Dynasty
    Category: Forbes Life By : Justin Doebele and Natasha Steven Read : 501 Date : Friday, February 09, 2018 - 10:40:45

    Ahmad Zamroni / Forbes Indonesia

    Pio Boffa, 63, is the fourth-generation winemaker of Pio Cesare winery from Alba, Italy. He was named after his late great-grandfather Cesare Pio, who founded the company in 1881. Initially Cesare, a businessman, made wine as a hobby, for his family and friends. From the beginning, however, Cesare believed in the quality of wines from that region, which is known for its famed Barolo and Barbaresco—both made with the Nebbiolo grape.

    His son Giuseppe expanded the winery, then thriving as its own business. Pio, being born into a wine family, had a natural fascination for oenology from childhood, often watching his father and grandfather produce wine. In 1972 when Pio was 17, he went to study for three months under the legendary U.S. winemaker Robert Mondavi, where he absorbed many of Mondavi’s techniques. Although there for only a short time, Pio says: “It was the experience of my life to be able to be adopted into the wine business by such a person as Robert Mondavi.”

    Focused on being a boutique producer, Pio Cesare’s name is closely associated with the rise of Barolo as one of Italy’s greatest wines. The family has now been producing wines in Alba and the Piedmont area—the heart of Barolo and Barbaresco production—for 135 years. The family uses ancient cellars, that include parts of Roman walls dating back to 50 BC. “Barolo and Barbaresco are two widely known wines in the panorama of wine lovers,” says Pio.

    Although Barolo and Barbaresco wines are both made from Nebbiolo, Pio says each has its own character. “Barolo is known as the king of Italian wines, while Barbaresco is known as the queen of Italian wines due to Barbaresco having more finesse and being more feminine, while Barolo has more character, being more robust and masculine,” says Pio.

    The family ensures that every detail is preserved as Pio Cesare founded the winery, opting for long-held traditional winemaking techniques as proof of their dedication. The family takes pride in being a small-scale artisanal producer, making only 400,000 bottles in a limited number of styles, including some white wines. The family owns most of its own vineyards, about 70 hectares. It uses minimal “intervention” in the form of chemicals, focuses on quality over quantity, and hires no seasonal workers—using a dedicated group who nurture the grapes for the entire growing cycle. “Everything is kept as it used to be, to keep the integrity of the family that has dedicated their years to the production of high quality wines,” says Pio.

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