In the Top 25 List of the most expensive bottles made in Italy, there's a tiny Friulian champion standing tall among the likes of Barolo, Amarone, Brunello di Montalcino: ranking 7th, there’s Miani Calvari Refosco Colli Orientali del Friuli. From a small winemaking firm in Buttrio (Udine), it comes in a very limited production of a few hundred bottles yearly, and each one is worth around 625€. It's worth remarking, too, that Refosco is a typical Friulian native grape.
Topping the precious chart there’s the only other FVG name, a Picolit Acquavite by famed Friulian grappa makers Nonino, hardly to be considered as wine: one bottle is about 1.365€.
The same Refosco by Miani also made it to the Top 25 Best Italian Wines, along with another of its limited-edition products, Miani Buri Colli Orientali del Friuli Merlot, whose bottles are worth 228€ each: and they’re the only two FVG wines included in “The Best” list!
A valuable acknowledgement for Enzo Pontoni, the owner of the winemaking firm established in Buttrio, a small town near Udine and located in the Colli Orientali (Oriental Hills) area, a place known for its extensive wine cultivation, also having its own DOC (Denomination of Controlled Origin) label.
Buttrio and its wines, a long history of growing taste: places to see
As it often happens with Friuli, there are special, specific areas that have been devoted to wine growing for centuries and so, though maybe not so wide or famous, are home to a series of really amazing wines.
With its barely 4.000 inhabitants, Buttrio (known as "Buri" in the local dialect) is definitely not a big city, and yet it counts about fifteen winemaking firms, some of which can flaunt a long history. Like, for instance, the Conte d’Attimis Maniago, whose lands were brought as a dowry for a marriage between noble families in 1585 and its vineyards are still going strong nowadays.
The Buttrio castle, instead, has been turned into an exclusive country touristic accomodation, while still having its own vineyard and winemaking brand. The ancient castle, tracing back to the 12th century, went through battles, wars and devastation, and the present buildings are of a more recent era, though still erected on those ruins: now it’s definitely a place worth visiting and staying, with its huge park, its superb kitchen and, of course, the wonderfully tasting wines.
Buttrio also boasts a “Museum of the Wine Civilization” in the wonderful Villa Toppo-Florio, an 18th century building with an immense botanical and archaeological park. It’s open to visitors and it also hosts, once a year, the Fiera Regionale dei Vini (the Regional Wine Fair), which will run its 88th edition in 2020 (from the 4th to the 7th June).
For more info about events in Buttrio, check out the Pro Loco Buri's Facebook page.
For more info about tourism in Buttrio, check out the Tourist Office Facebook page.