As is often the case, what is considered tradition by one country may be viewed as the next big trend in another. Tuscany’s organic vineyards are one case in point. On a recent visit to the Renaissance Tuscany Il Ciocco Resort & Spa, GM George Midleje and I visited the family-run Podere Concori winery, located nearby in Fiattone, for a biodynamic wine tasting in Tuscany of the reds and whites that have catapulted owner Gabriele Da Prato, a biodynamic farmer/trombone player, into the limelight. Much like organic farming, biodynamic farming uses no chemicals or pesticides and crops are rotated and planted with the phases of the moon. Unlike organic farming, emphasis is placed on the health and fertility of the farm as a whole.
“It’s a living entity that requires balance and harmony in its parts,” Da Prato’s assistant explains. “Many of the local vineyards [including mine] have switched to biodynamic. It’s better for the environment and yields are better, the wine is unfiltered—you’re drinking it as it was and should be.” Groups staying at the Renaissance Tuscany often make their way to Da Prato’s for an aperitif and home cooked pasta—and if they’re lucky, a little jazz, courtesy of Da Prato himself.
Whether touring or drinking or dining, Podere Concori is artful experience, which like all art, reflects its creator. Comparing Da Prato to this white wine made from the grapes out back, this would be refinement and elegance.