Frescobaldi for the social

Frescobaldi for the social

The twelfth Gorgona island vintage

The Tuscan company’s major social project comes to life on Europe’s only prison island, where an open-air prison becomes a wine cellar. Founded in 1869, the company has been operating in Italy for over 150 years and has been involved in a social project since 2012.

The island of Gorgona, vineyards and wine

The vineyard covers 2.3 hectares, including the first and a little more than a second planted in 2015. Gorgona, a white wine made from the Vermentino and Ansonica grape varieties, is the fruit of the uniqueness of the place, the work of man and a symbol of hope and freedom. The first harvest took place in 2012 and since then the wine has been produced in collaboration with the inmates, for a total of 9,000 bottles a year, each created to learn a trade, while being aware of having a new chance to rewind the tape of his life and reintegrate into society dreaming of a better ‘future’. Gorgona, now in its twelfth vintage, is a ‘seductive and wild’ wine that tastes of redemption, imbued with hope and a desire for revenge.

Gorgona 2023, the twelfth vintage

“Gorgona is a project that makes us prouder and prouder every year, representing a unique island and project that never ceases to offer a multitude of emotions, with the production of a relatively small number of bottles. We have the opportunity to discover this extraordinary terroir, which conveys everything through its fragrances and flavours: the love of the island, the care and passion of man, the hope of a better life, the influence of the sea and wonderful nature. Just over two hectares of vines give life to an inimitable and exclusive wine, a symbol of hope and freedom that is becoming increasingly popular around the world. We are proud to have been involved in this project since 2012”, says Lamberto Frescobaldi, President of Marchesi Frescobladi.

The Gorgona label aims to be an ‘extraordinary edition’ of the island, telling a different story every year. With Gorgona 2023, we wanted to talk about the wind, or rather the winds that blow here and play a vital role in everyday life. The four winds – Greek, Sirocco, Libeccio and Mistral – are fundamental to viticulture on the island, influencing air temperature and therefore the ripening of the grapes.

Gorgona stands on ferrous soil, and is a small vineyard of two hectares, wonderfully exposed to the east and protected from the winds. First planted in 1999, then in 2015 and 2018, the Vermentino and Ansonica grapes have always been the undisputed protagonists of this extraordinary wine. Gorgona captures the essence of the island.

Gorgona 2023 has a beautiful straw yellow colour with golden highlights, brilliant and crystalline. The nose is complex and elegantly intense, characterised by Mediterranean and iodine notes. The Mediterranean scents include helichrysum, savory and rosemary, as well as floral notes reminiscent of broom and chamomile. The fruity side tends towards yellow and exotic fruits, as well as delicate citrus notes. The palate is delicious, fresh and long. The finish is remarkable and the nose-mouth match is exceptional. Once again, Gorgona impresses and surprises us with its vigorous character.

‘Frescobaldi for the social’, the project

More than just a wine, this is a multi-year project that has been developed in collaboration with the management of the prison colony, with the aim of giving inmates hands-on experience of viticulture. Under the supervision of Frescobaldi’s agronomists and oenologists, the inmates have brought back into production and cultivated one hectare of vineyard on the island, to which 1.3 hectares planted by Frescobaldi have been added over the years.

Prisoners spend the last period of their sentence working in contact with nature to develop skills that will help them reintegrate into professional and social life.

The project, which aims to give inmates a practical, active experience of winegrowing, with the collaboration and supervision of Frescobaldi’s agronomists and oenologists, begins with a small vineyard in the heart of an amphitheatre overlooking the sea. Gorgona Rosso was born with the 2015 harvest, from a few rows of Sangiovese and Vermentino Nero, grown organically and then matured in terracotta jars. Today, the vineyard covers almost two and a half hectares, including one initial vineyard and a second planted in 2015. Gorgona comes from this vineyard, which is made up of Vermentino and Ansonica grapes. It is the fruit of the uniqueness of the place, the work of man and has become a symbol of hope and freedom.

The partners

Andrea Bocelli, who wrote the text and signed the label for the 2013 vintage.

“The Tuscan archipelago is an earthly paradise, of which Gorgona is Aphrodite’s wildest and most luminescent pearl. Behind its apparent harshness, the unspeakable seduction of perfumes and silences, and a nature that moves by its strength, by its eternal puberty…. And all around, water and salt, reflecting the messages of the sky, tying the laces of the sails.”
(A. Bocelli – 2014)

Simonetta Doni of Studio Doni & Associati, one of the few international graphic design studios specialising in the design of wine labels, takes part every year, offering the wine packaging, interpreting, with a highly specialised team endowed with a specific cultural and artistic sensibility, the characteristics that make the project and its island unique.

Giorgio Pinchiorri, owner of Enoteca Pinchiorri, one of the most renowned Italian restaurants in the world, is taking part in the project, choosing to contribute his exclusive cuisine to promoting the gastronomic and wine heritage of the island of Gorgone.

Argotractors, an Argo Group company founded in 2007 with the aim of creating a world-class tractor centre, has donated a vineyard tractor for use on the island.