The winery, harmoniously integrated into the Chiaramonte landscape, represents the realisation of the Gulfi dream. The business, built between 2007 and 2011, harvests and vinifies grapes from different areas of production, ensuring an all-natural end product through a non-invasive wine making process. This is the last stage of an organic process that even excludes irrigation of the vineyards, accepting a low yield per hectare to promote the healthiness of the fruit. The winery offers accommodation and catering to provide guests with a holistic and unique experience of the produce.
France has influenced the life and love of wine of Vito Catania, who spent his childhood in Paris and attended school there. Raffaele Catania, Vito's father, escaped to France during the crisis that hit the Sicilian countryside after the Second World War: France is where Vito learnt how to respect the vineyard and its fruits, a value that went on to influence his choices in the future. Whilst his love and admiration for France was strong, Raffaele's heart was in Chiaramonte, where he would send all the money he managed to put aside. His savings travelled home to Italy, with the help of some friars and a “cut” of 30%, which guaranteed their arrival at their destination. He planned to buy new plots of land and go back to work in the countryside, especially in the vineyard.
Finally, in 1970, the Catania family returned to Italy. Vito, then nineteen, was also back, but his independent nature inspired him to do something of his own accord. Thus, after his military service, he stopped in Trieste where he became a car dealer (of a French brand, needless to say). By chance, from the documentation attached to a sale, he discovered a new, well-paid profession: representing and marketing chemicals. Although he was the best salesman of all the car dealers, Vito decided that he would change profession.
From Trieste he moved to Monza, from the car sector to the chemical sector. This was a fundamental step for Vito because it was within this new sector that he created his own company, Lombarda Chimica, known today as Reys SPA. And while his business expertise led Vito to found an important industrial organisation, his passion always led him back to the world of wine, even if this only meant visiting wineries or buying wines.
“Grandpa” Raffaele dreamt of the countryside and the vineyards. Once back in Chiaramonte Gulfi, he devoted himself mainly to the production of wines, an activity which began in the 1980s with the launch of the winery's first label, Nerojbleo. When Raffaele passed away in 1995, Vito had to decide whether to continue the business or sell the farm. These were his roots, the land to which Raffaele had given his soul and to which he had devoted his dreams. Vito had no desire to sever this bond of affection: quite the contrary, he decided to confirm his father's company and started investing in olive oil as well, since Chiaramonte Gulfi boasts a unique olive cultivar known as the Tonda Iblea.