area around Controguerra and Nereto, situated on the North of the Abruzzo region,
between the Apennine Mountains and the Adriatic Sea, is endowed with a fortunate,
natural position for its climate and renowned from ancient times for its typical
wine vineyards. It was here that Nico Illuminati, an impassioned master in the
art of winemaking, lived during the later half of the last century. Around the
year 1890 he initiated the activity of wine production and set up the then known
Estate of Nico - "Fattoria di Nico."
Today the Estate has become much larger under the guidance of Dino Illuminati,
grandson of Nico. He has brought the family-owned winery to new heights with advanced
wine technology, applying the same skilled craftsmanship of his illustrious grandfather,
in an ideal fusion of the traditional and the modern.
The Estate vineyards extend over 150 acres of the finest terrain of the whole
region. The nature of the terrain is a perfectly balanced mix of clay and sand
with marked presence of siliceous substances (potash, magnesium, lime, and components
of silicate). The terrain is loose, deep, and fertile on considerably high, hilly
grounds, twelve hundred to fifteen hundred feet above sea level. All of the vineyards
have south/southwestern exposure. At present there are 150 acres of vineyards
in production which makes the Estate the largest privately owned winery in the
region. Of the 150 acres of vine-yards, 75 acres are of Montepulciano grape varietals
for the production of Montepulciano d'Abruzzo red wine. Sixty acres are of Trebbiano
grape varietals for the production of the Trebbiano d'Abruzzo white wine and 15
acres are of selected, experimental varietals. This is a commitment by Dino Illuminati
to the upgrading of all of his varietals and the development of newly selected
production of the proprietor's Reserve wines.
Illuminati has won many awards, including the "Gran Canal" award two years ago
at the Veneto Wine Festival. It is given to the "Winemaker of the Year" for outstanding
work in experimentation and evolution of traditional and new varietal wines. This
year he won the prestigious "Oscar" for national recognition as one of Italy’s
finest winemakers, as well as the "Diploma di Medaglia d’Oro" for outstanding
winemaker, at the 1997 Vinitaly in Verona.