Wine born of struggle, perfected in a cave!
Meet Edi Kante of Friuli.
The wines produced by Edi Kante are the result of a confident, creative and passionate approach to winemaking.
This boutique winery survives despite the most unlikely setting, delivering extraordinary wines and showcasing just what this challenging region of Italy has to offer. They are a tribute to Edi’s hard work and commitment.
Hidden in the south-east corner of Friuli-Venezia Giulia, by the Slovenia border, the Edi Kante vines must make their home in a land without soil, struggling through the rock and stone to lay strong roots, at the mercy of the “Bora” wind.
The vineyard location was carefully selected for its exposure to sunshine and its varying altitudes.
The most unusual feature is the cellar, which has been carved out of the rock ensuring a highly controlled environment, limiting vibrations and allowing the wine to age in a truly natural setting.
Edi Kante himself is undoubtedly the driving force behind this unique winery.
He is a pioneer among vintners for daring to attempt the seemingly impossible, by cultivating grapes where they should not survive – instead they succeed and go on to produce exceptional wines.
As well as a curious and inventive winemaker he is a poet and a painter – responsible for the stunning artwork featured on the wine bottles.
He has been described as an acrobat who searches endlessly for balance, seeking it in the land, vines and grapes of his estate.elieve themselves to be “custodians” of the land and its biodiversity.
Being a perfectionist, not every year is a winemaking year for the Edi Kante winery as the vines and grapes must meet his exceptionally high standards.
The wines that Edi deems worthy of production are known for their fragrancy, complexity and minerality with natural and elegant character, and above all an unrepeatable, signature style.
The Edi Kante white wines feature at the top of many expert listings (such as Robert Parker) and they are among the highest quality whites from Italy – often compared to the finest Burgundy or Loire whites.
They are also unusual for their ageing potential, made possible by their high acidity.
Wine tasters at Gambero Rosso describe his wines as an “eloquent expression of their terroir” and there’s no doubt they demonstrate what beauty can come from hardship when someone dares to dream!
Explore wines by the legendary poet-painter-winemaker of Trieste!
At the Kante vineyards the grapes are harvested by hand. In the cellar, wines are neither fined nor filtered and no new oak is used (barrels are up to 18 years old).
This is Edi's style and philosophy of winemaking. Scroll down for some highlights from his collection:
WHICH WINE TO TRY?
If you like your sparkling dry, crisp and elegant this is for you!
Made from Chardonnay and the local Malvasia grape, Edi's KK Brut is a zero dosage Champagne-method sparkling with a fine perlage and a very refreshing character. After hand-harvesting, the grapes ferment and age for a year in French oak before bottling for a year of ageing on the lees. The KK Rose is 100% Pinot Nero and follows the same winemaking process.
These high quality sparkling wines, that age beautifully (as we can testify to from a bottle we came across last week at the back of our personal fridge, which has languished there for 5+ years) and due to the less famous location they offer fantastic value compared to those from better known regions.
Label Fact: The wine name/label shows a K for Kante that's mirrored to represent the dual aspect of looking back to tradition while looking forward to innovation.
WHITES WORTH WAITING FOR
There is a very unique 'Kante' character that you spot in all his whites. The grape variety may change, but the unmistakable 'Kante-ness' shines through.
His whites are fresh and lively when young, then become more and more layered as they age. The 2018 vintages* we stock are all great whites to pair with appetisers and salads, but do try an older vintage to pair with more substantial dishes. The Malvasia is particularly good with shellfish dishes and sushi.
REDS TO REVIVE YOU
Edi focusses on local vines, like the rare red grape Terrano - a sub-variety of the Refosco family, native to Venizia Giulia and western Slovenia. Try this as a single 'varietal' wine, or in an unusual blend:
TERRANO is a fresh style of red that will invigorate your palate at the start of the meal. In fact, it offers lip-smacking acidity that you rarely find in a red. Thanks to this freshness, Terrano makes a very versatile food pairing, balancing rich dishes. The wine bursts with notes of tart red berries when young and keeps its fresh character with years of bottle ageing!
LUDVIK is not only a grape blend (Terrano with Pinot Nero, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot) but also a multi-vintage wine (current bottling made from 2015 and 2016 vintages). Each year the grapes macerate for 14 days and vintages are aged separately (2015 vintage aged for 4 years, 2016 vintage aged for 3 years) before being blended.
For great vintages, Edi makes a special 'riserva' wine and paints his own label designs to go on these limited-production bottles!
Since 2013 we have been lucky to enjoy a number of fantastic 'selezione' whites, such as a vertical of Vitovska going back to 2005. Currently we have in stock the SAUVIGNON Selezione from 2010 with its gorgeously evocative label. It's a complex white, with layers and layers of character. It takes time to open up in your glass and is certainly worthy of your full focus (hence no food pairing notes). It will also continue to age beautifully. So it's up to you, but we'd recommend a bottle now and one to age (if you have the self control)! :)
Psst! We have a few bottles left of the VITOVSKA Selezione 2006 but be quick as these are almost gone, never to return :(
THE ART OF OUR ANCESTORS
Fancy something quirky?
Try a 'frizzante' white wine made using the Ancestral Method (unlike Champagne and Prosecco, this is a different production style) that will surprise and delight many wine lovers. It may not be everyone's 'cup of tea' with its cloudy appearance and slight fizz, but it's a great example of this type of wine by a passionate winemaker who enjoys bringing together tradition and innovation!
Still not sure which wine to try next?
Don't hesitate to contact me for personal recommendations and advice.