Our story starts three generations ago, when our grandfather purchased a parcel of land at the foot of Mt Etna. At the time, land was considered to be prosperity, providing some of life's basic needs - food, trade and work. Given its location, the land also provided a quarry of lava stone, which with determination and grit, our grandfather manually carved to make bricks used to create roads and footpaths for the island of Sicily. The fertile part of the land was turned into a hazelnut, chestnut and fruit orchard, olive grove and vineyard which provided food for the family and supplied local and national markets.
As young boys, we played on the land, joined our family in harvest activities and the land was the location of many meals eaten together. At the time all we knew was family, culture and respect - for tradition, for the land and for the unpredictable volcano. What we did not know was that these family values and our strong cultural heritage, together with the richness that comes from volcanic terrain, would enable us to realise a dream of producing some of the world's most intriguing wines.
Together as a family we have combined our heritage, passion, skills and determination to create Vini Cali.
"For years I watched the vineyard grow, from seedlings to harvest and more recently to overseeing the production of our first bottles. At the start it seemed to take an eternity but now I can appreciate all the investment and sacrifices that go into each glass of wine. I'm proud to have created the Vini Cali chapter for my family."
"After 20 years in Australia I can call it my home, but my roots will always be in Sicily. Every time I set foot in the vineyard I feel like I never left. Even when I am on the other side of the world, every sip of our wine transports me to the slopes of Etna through the aromas and flavours that were and still are my Sicily."
Fascinating and unique, Mt Etna is an imposing symbol of Sicily that makes this area a mystical and fascinating place.
The Etna landscape is characterized by terraces with UNESCO World Heritage recognised dry lava stone walls. A traditional 'alberello' training system is used on many of the vines planted on these terraces, which in some cases are centuries old.
The volcanic soil and various lava flowers, the harsh Mediterranean climate and temperature variations and age-old winemaking techniques make Etna a unique and appreciated terroir all over the world.
Our wines are born in the shadow of the mountain: mineral rich, energetic, warm and robust, just like Etna.