Elana & Roberto DiFilippo
Sagrantino, Sangiovese, Barbera, Grechetto, Trebbiano Spoletino
Cantina Plani Arche is located across the valley from the ancient city of Assisi. It is comprised of 6 hectares of vineyards across 6 parcels, at average elevations of 250 meters, oriented towards the southeast. The predominant soil is calcareous clay.
Geese. Broken leg. Pulled pork. Family.
Roberto DiFilippo, owner and winemaker of Plani Arche, farms organically but it’s more than a check in the box. To deal with foxes, which were devouring his grapes, he brought some geese on to his property. Counter-intuitively, geese are aggressive, loud and scary as hell swooping down on something invading their territory.
Roberto also uses literal workhorses to plough his fields and avoid the soil compression that results from 2+ ton tractors, but the sacrifice, for Roberto, has been more than in speed of farming…his leg has been broken not once but TWICE by a horse kick. It tells you how devoted he is to his horses and how close to the action he is.
To understand Roberto’s wines, imagine attending one of his famous pig roasts and washing down some pulled pork with his full- bodied, slightly nutty and tannic Grechetto or his supple and spicy Montefalco Rosso. To understand Roberto, you must simply see the love, affection and pride he and his family share. His father Italo purchased the land for their vineyards in 1970, planted vines in 1971 and his first vintage was in 1974.
The name of the winery…”Plani Arche”…is the Latin name of a local shrine (“Pian d’Arca”) which is considered the spot where St Francis of Assisi gave his famous “Sermon to the Birds”. That outreach beyond humans aligns perfectly with Roberto’s holistic approach to farming; indeed he follows the teachings of Masanobu Fukuoka.
These are wines of the Umbrian land and Roberto DiFilippo’s soul. Their purity, complexity and unique character are an inspiration.