LOOKING BACK TO GO FORWARD
Skywalker is a brand that has already made its mark on the international wine scene. So it would have been simple to import the rules and methods which have brought such success to the wines of Skywalker Ranch in Marin County, California and of Château Margüi in Provence, France, to this newest Umbrian addition to the wine portfolio. But that's not the Skywalker way.
Certainly, some core values underpin the whole Skywalker operation: boutique production of wines of exceptional character, dedication to absolute exclusivity, obsessive delight in bringing out the very best of unique terroirs and a passionate respect for the environment.
At Viandante del Cielo, these values have given rise to something quite unique – an adventure which introduces cosmopolitan elements to a zone where rural traditions are age-old and strong, allowing the old and new to work together for a result which is as fresh and exciting as it is true to a venerable past.
Under the guidance of enologists intimately familiar with the terroirs of central Italy on a site where for centuries monks lived, prayed and farmed, native and international varieties have been planted side by side to produce the unique blends of a winery that is itself a unique blend of contemporary and traditional, Old World and New.
CRAFTING THE WINES
Established wineries are used to adapting their planting schemes and their cellar layouts to changing requirements – new wines, new technology, new fashions.
At Viandante del Cielo, we were able to move in unison from the very beginning of our adventure to ensure that wines, vineyards and cellar worked seamlessly together in perfect harmony.
As we studied the terroir, as we immersed ourselves in Umbrian wine culture, as we listened to the advice of our winemakers, experimented with blends and tasted the first barrel samples, a trinity of wines began to emerge and make their voices heard.
To the first – a bold creation of impressive structure and poise forged from a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon with a smaller proportion of Merlot – we gave the winery’s own name, Viandante.
The second – a rich, lively, aromatic blend of great finesse in which native variety Ciliegliolo is complemented by three other red varieties that have long been planted around these parts – we called Pristinvm, Latin for ‘ancient, original, traditional’.
The third – a complex, Chardonnay-based white, that can evolve in the bottle for years – we christened Lungolago, or ‘lakeside’, in honour of the body of water that has so much influence on the life and health of our vines.
Viandante del Cielo’s vine planting scheme was born with these wines in mind. In the case of the native grapes, we were lucky enough to benefit from the enological nursery established by our winemakers, who are passionate about saving and propagating varieties, like Foglia Tonda or Sanforte, that have all but disappeared from commercial vineyards.
The cellar, too, was built around the wines, not vice-versa. Completed in 2020, it is an elegant, streamlined edifice which nuzzles into the hillside for minimum visual impact and maximum wine-making efficiency.
Here, Viandante del Cielo’s three wines ferment and mature in a mixture of specially designed concrete tanks and oak barriques.
The result is a boutique collection, available in limited quantities, that is destined for discerning wine lovers curious to explore new frontiers, keen to cross continents in the time it takes to uncork a bottle, pour and find yourself standing suddenly on a terraced hillside, admiring a sunset that throws burnished shadows across an Italian lake.