Nowadays our life has become longer, sometimes even beyond the capacity of our bones to sustain it, but Methuselahs existed and still do.
Beings capable of challenging the centuries, of remembering the two great Wars, one fought with cold weapons and the other with the Atomic bomb. The 20th Century gave us an awful temporal acceleration, launching us into this phenomenon.
Lately I’m hanging out with an octogenarian, still in quite good shape and an exceptional mental dexterity. Like all of these particular scientific cases he boasts of his mischief, flaunts an almost pathetic virility and the heterosexuality expected of his generation. But I adore him, he seems such a modern fossil! Together we make fun of the new fads and lifestyles, from vegans to the most fierce of teetotallers. It’s him, already past it, that comments “what point in life have these 80 or 90 year olds got!?”. He smokes Toscani cigars, drinks Italian wines, and rum with pestiferous toasted cocoa beans, I like to flatter him, listening to him a bit, pitying him and humouring him a bit.
But you should listen to how he talks about women! It seems as if he really knew his stuff, like Magellano would have told of Oceans. When I tell him this, he turns round and answers back insolently “my women, I had to undress them myself”.
He says it as if he really had relished in that discovery, reliving it on each different occasion. Maybe woman had loved him…
Mankind, sad survivor of Worldwide economical and social wars, where every single difference and divergence of a thousand years before were still intact - of course now with new Countries in the forefront - had reached 3015. With highly advanced technologies, albeit reserved to a minority Elite, almost identifiable as Castes, heirs of the old Lobbies.
Business dinners, for the ostentation of power, were frequent and fully participated and for which invitations were highly sort after. Tele transportation meant that it was easy to receive food, mainly synthetic or of molecular cuisine, with ingredients that had become exclusive in many cases. A compote of Porchetta of Ariccia DOP was all the rage in Beijing, but the bystanders really couldn’t get their heads round some hosts beaming down bottles of wine onto the tables. Wretched winemakers, the most conservative still fermenting in wood or outdated steel! What absolute astonishment if a Frascati Superiore appeared on the table! It seems that they still trampled on grapes with rare, almost extinct, women’s feet!!
We’ve started. The first copper and sulphur treatments are wetting our vines. Plant by plant, leaf after leaf, as if enveloped in a London fog. We have been spore-stalkers for thousands of years. Not that we want to totally wipe them out, but reduce them as much as possible, to save leaves and bunches from the deadly fungus. Against which no serendipity or magic right on Earth can have effect.
Today we have modern machinery, pressurised cabins, to use the utmost precaution not to pollute our fruit, soil or our climate: they are our wealth and collateral. But neither do we want, as farmers, to suffer damage of any sort.
I can clearly recall my grandparents, that died at almost a century old - but only by chance- come out from the vines with a pump of Bordeaux mixture on their shoulders, copper and lime, as blue as the loveliest sea, blue like the clearest of skies, blue like the bluest cloak of Prince Charming. Then just rinse off with water from the well, drink a glass of wine, praying that it wouldn’t rain too soon.
Only from the most healthy of grapes can you make excellent wines that, each of them, in a year or in a hundred years, will be newborn, adolescent, adults and great veterans, but unavoidably will die, just like the most fortunate of us all. No wine maker will produce wines with the intention of trying to make them last a hundred years, it’ll be the territory, the vintage, the method of vinification, the conservation of the bottles….to decide. I have met great old guys and run-of-the-mill youngsters and viceversa, but inevitably the mothers, that know our weaknesses, that encourage us, that scold us, love and when they are especially happy, cry, like a vine shoot cut in February.
a group of people, that have lived and experienced the wonderful atmosphere of Frascati for many years, and now wish to share it with you.