La Ponca is located on the gentle slopes of Scriò, a hamlet perched at the northern boundaries of the Collio region in Friuli Venezia Giulia, north-eastern Italy. From here, lines of terraced vineyards unfurl surrounded by local broadleaf forests, while the eye catches the pale blue profile of the Alps in the distance, and the glimmering sea to the south. The balance between land, man and nature is given by a tacit agreement, in which respect for the ecosystem plays a fundamental role in the creation of identifying wines, the standard of the territory. La Ponca bears the name of the land on which it stands: “ponca” is a special rocky substrate composed of layers of sandstone alternating with marl of silty origin. The rock formation of the ponca took place 65 million years ago, but its structure is tender and fragile, continuously menaced by the elements and invasive human interactions. To prevent its erosion, it is necessary to employ a sustainable approach towards agriculture, which is embodied by the team at La Ponca with heart and soul.
In this border place, privileged by unique pedoclimatic conditions, the entrepreneur and dreamer Alex Maccan has identified the perfect opportunity to give life to his ambitious wine project: 110 acres of woods, vineyards and arable land to help make Collio recognized in Italy and in the world as a territory highly suited to the production of fine white wines. 30 acres are planted to vine.
The wines are sleek and mineral, they tell the tale of terior each through their own lens.
“The region of Collio has always had a magnetic appeal to me. Here wines come to life with a soul of their own, between wild nature and terraced hills. I have quickly realised that time would eventually bring me here, to do my best and prove the value of this place and its wines. Then La Ponca was born.” – Alex Maccan
|Friuli Venezia Giulia
|Collio DOC, Venezia Giulia IGT
|1700 9L cases
|Farming (Sustainable, organic, biodynamic)
|Sustainable and organic
The La Ponca vineyards extend over six plots, from north to south around the Scrió area: Pacial, Petris, Paglizza, Casa Rossa, Skal and Ronc. They include approximately 30 acres on which six varieties are grown, each dedicated to a wine: Ribolla Gialla, Friulano, Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Malvasia and Schioppettino. The six parcels grow on gentle slopes between 650 and 985 feet above sea level, with east, south-east exposures for the white grape varieties and west-facing dedicated to the indigenous red Schioppettino. The proximity to the Prealpi Giulie mountain chain guarantees strong thermal excursions, which result in the glass in high acidity and aromatic complexity. The strong winds originating from the north maintain the vines dry and the grapes healthy, reducing the necessity of plant-protection treatments. Low yields per acre and terraced rows characterize the La Ponca vineyards, managed entirely by hand, from the planting of the cuttings to the harvest.
The “ponca” soil stimulates vine growth by the stratifications between hard and soft porous rocks. Along the thin continuous airspace between marls and sandstones the roots grow deep, looking for water in the natural reserves provided by this soil type. This delicate hydrogeological balance allows the vines to produce high-quality grapes with consistency, even in adverse conditions and dry spells.
The winery activity in La Ponca follows an essential philosophy, in which human interventions are aimed at enhancing the character of the land. The vinifications mainly take place in stainless steel vats at a controlled temperature, and are preceded in the case of the whites by a cryomaceration which helps to preserve their aromatic complexity. A small percentage ferments and matures in wood. Schioppettino, the only red wine from the estate, rests for 12 months in barriques.