Deep in the heel of the Italian boot, amid the hills of central Apulia, there lies a little gem of an estate - Colli della Murgia. One of the few true estates or azienda agricola in the region, Colli della Murgia is the handicraft of two brothers, Franco and Valentino DiBenedetto.
With a vision and a lot of hard work, the "fratelli" DiBenedetto have developed a distinct style of wine making. By rooting themselves in the cultural tradition of the land and by forging avant garde in the southern Italian wine world with an eclectic selection of grape varieties, the DiBenedetto's have fashioned two wines of distinction: Selvato and Erbaceo.
Selvato, a red wine, is born of the traditional Aglianico and Sangiovese grapes. Exhibiting body, flavor, and strength, the wine is characterized by the distinct smell of spice, forest berries, and wild cherry. Even more renowned is the estate's Erbaceo (air-bah-cho), a harmonious white wine that combines the traditional Malvasia, Trebbiano and Moscato with the non-traditional Chardonnay. An interplay of fruit and spice, Erbaceo demonstrates a fascinating complexity as it evolves from a crisp, refreshing Italian white in its youth to a richly fruity wine of subtle, lingering flavor after its third year in the bottle. On a canvas of Chardonnay, the brothers DiBenedetto have added the broad brush strokes of clean, clear light with Trebbiano, emboldened the portrait with the earthy terra firma of Malvasian spice, and added a splash, the "tacco" of moscato, to draw the eye. In a region known more for its voluminous production of non-descript wine, the likes of Erbaceo are truly remarkable.
To assure both the quality and the purity of the wines made at Colli della Murgia, the Erbaceo and Selvato are made entirely from certified organically grown grapes from the estate. In the case of the Erbaceo, the wine is cold-fermented and only natural wild yeasts are used in the process.