The Germano family has owned 6 hectares of land on the hill called Ceretta, near Serralunga d’Alba, in the heart of the Barolo area, since 1856.
Great-grandfather Francesco, and thereafter grandfather Alberto, cultivated vines, producing a little wine but selling most of the grapes, as was the custom. Ettore, the son of Alberto, continued his father’s work, also becoming skilled at grapevine grafting, and in the 1950s he started to replant the vineyards. He used vines that he himself propagated using ‘massal selection,’ with a vine density of at least four thousand vines per hectare, of the varieties typical in this region: Dolcetto, Barbera and Nebbiolo.
In 1964 Ettore married Rosanna, and they continued to work the vineyards, buying additional neighboring parcels of land.
In 1985 Ettore and Rosanna’s son Sergio finished enology school at Alba and started to work with his family, starting to bottle small amounts of wine in addition to the wine sold in bulk to friends and private customers, and continuing to sell some of the grapes. More small parcels were purchased, and Sergio planted the first Chardonnay vines.
In 1993 all of the grapes produced were vinified in their own winery. In 1995 Sergio planted a vineyard in the village of Cigliè, in the Alta Langa area, where he thought that white grapes might do well, starting with Riesling and Chardonnay. In 2001, with the birth of the new ‘Alta Langa’ DOC for classic method sparkling wine, Sergio planted some Pinot Noir suitable for making sparkling wine in Cigliè, and more Chardonnay. A parcel of the famous Serralunga vineyard ‘Lazzarito’ that had been owned by Sergio’s maternal great-grandfather was added in 2002, and in 2005 about another hectare of Ceretta.
Now the estate consists of about 10 hectares (25 acres) of red varieties in Serralunga, and about 5 hectares (12 acres) in Cigliè dedicated to the production of white wines and sparkling wines. The estate is now run by Sergio and his wife Elena, maintaining the family tradition.