Shirt tales from an early visit to Marsuret Azienda Agricola
The advent of the grape harvest (and the “everything else” harvest) in western Colorado reminds me how the hopes of spring and efforts of summer come to fruition in autumn.
Last spring, as is habit, I was in northern Italy’s Veneto, the heartland of Prosecco DOCG where in a steep-hilled triangle roughly denominated by Valdobbiaddene, Conegliano and Vittorio Veneto some of the world’s best sparkling wine is made.
Two days earlier I had left Verona and Vinitaly and now was enjoying the view from top of the Marsuret winery in Valdobbiaddene with Alessio Marsura, who was explaining to a couple of visitors the lay of his family’s vineyards.
Marsuret Azienda Agricola was founded in 1936 by Alessio’s grandfather Augostino Marsura (Marsuret is a family nickname) and nearly 80 years later the family continues to produce award-winning wines in the heart of the most-prestigious of the Prosecco DOCG zones.
Despite also still recovering from the hectic experience that is VinItaly, Alessio said he was enjoying the quiet of the surrounding vineyards as he graciously shared his family’s Superiore di Cartizze Prosecco DOCG.
“From here,” he said, turning toward the still winter-brown hills, “You can almost see the vines where this wine is grown. It looks better in the summer, of course, but this gives you an idea of the difficulty of growing grapes in such steep area.”
The he turned.
“We make only five of our Valdobbiadene DOCG Proseccos and during the fair (VinItaly) someone called them ‘cult wines’, ” he said with a laugh. “Like your shirt.”
At the time I was wearing a wine-dyed jean shirt from Robert Mondavi and he was referring to article from the Vinitaly press corps that said the deep-indigo shirt was one of “two cult objects to be worn” during the fair.
The shirt, made by the Crawford Denim & Vintage Co. of Manhattan Beach, Cal., is hand-dyed with the Mondavi Heritage Red blend and features wooden buttons made from wine barrels.
Alessio turned away to look at the bare vines, and said the promise of summer seemed a long way off.
“There is much to be done between now and harvest, it’s barely spring,” he said. “So maybe it’s a good time to drink good Prosecco and get ready for a summer’s work.”