Gaja - Beyond the rules & appellations

Gaja is one of the best-known wine producers in all of Italy. Founded in 1859 by Giovanni Gaja with just 2 hectares in Barbaresco, Northwest Italy, the Gaja name remains most strongly associated with Nebbiolo-based wines.

When Angelo Gaja took over in 1970, he introduced several single vineyard Barbaresco, the Sorì San Lorenzo, Sorì Tildìn, and Costa Russi. Angelo named the Cabernet Sauvignon as Darmagi, which translates to ‘what a pity’, as Angelo’s father was not supportive of having Bordeaux varieties for Gaja.

Gaja is famous for internationalizing Piedmont with modern winemaking practices from France & USA, but many traditions remained. Gaja gained great attention when it began to blend a small amount of Barbera into all but two of its Barbaresco and Barolo wines, relegating them to the Langhe DOC classification instead of DOCG. Angelo Gaja stands firm that this was a traditional method to correct acidity, and is proud for each Gaja wine to be focused on the individual vineyard production, rather than the appellations.


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