Fausto & Augusto Andi

Year Established: 1980s
Location: Montù Beccaria, Oltrepò Pavese, Lombardia
Size: 6 hectares
Varieties: Barbera, Croatina, Croà, Moradella, Vermilion, Columbaria
Viticulture: Biodynamic
Vinification: Low or no sulfur added. Aging in large, old acacia botti, amphorae, French oak barrels

“The virtuous man’s task is to restore the balance of nature through the care of the land and the use of traditional and/or innovative techniques that are the least invasive possible on the normal development of the plant.”
This summarizes the philosophy of Fausto Andi, who is spoken of in reverent tones in the Oltrepò Pavese, almost as if he were a mystic. He is, in the words of one fan, “a prophet of biodynamic agriculture”.  The vineyards, used in production of wine since the middle of the 19th century, were tended by his grandfather and father before him. Fausto took over several decades ago after an extremely brief career in banking and he is now joined by his son Augusto. There is great dedication to the cultivation of native grape varieties such as Moradella, Croatina, Vermiglio, Croà and the almost unheard of Colombaia. Fausto and Augusto carefully and gently manage the land – most of the work is done by hand. The most common vine diseases are treated without chemicals – instead they spray milk or whey on the fruit to protect it. The wines are pure and beautiful, layered and structured yet wonderfully balanced and integrated. Sparkling wines Cuvee #5 and Cuvee #7 (2005 and 2007 vintages), were left on their lees for 16+ and 14+ years, respectively. They are insanely good; sadly we only received 96 bottles of each.