Nowadays Cinque Terre have to be grateful to the stubbornness and tenacity of the older generation and to its superhuman efforts that changed the landscape to make a living through agriculture, mainly destined to producing wine for sale.
In order to cultivate the vine, due to the roughness of this area, it was necessary to build an infinite number of dry-stone walls to create the terraces on which to plant the vines.
In consideration with what just said, the harvest assumed epic contours, as the connections between the fields were formed by narrow and inaccessible paths with countless stairways, which denied the possibility to use any kind of mechanical means of transportation. Continue reading →
Apart from the vineyards our property is also composed of terraces for the cultivation of olive trees which give a very high quality oil.
In fact the name Volastra comes from the Latin “Vicus Oleaster”, that literally means the place of the olive trees. This makes you understand how this type of activity is considered “historical” for our village.
The cultivation of the olive trees certainly requires less effort compared with the cultivation of the vines even though, due to the landscape morphology , every single agricultural activity means huge effort. Continue reading →
This year’s harvest took us five days’ work.
The first three days were dedicated to the collection of the grapes and the production of our D.O.C. white wine, made in our “legendary” wine-cellar.
In addition to the collection for the dry white wine we proceeded to the selection of the best grapes for Sciacchetrà (our selected dessert wine), whose vinification will take place about 1 month later.
The last two days were devoted to the collection and transportation of the grapes to the 5 Terre COOP, of which we are members since the 80’s. Continue reading →
Volastra is the main paths’crossroad of the Cinque Terre National Park.
From here you can walk down to Manarola in 30 minutes with the route n. 6 and to Corniglia in 1 hour and 20 minutes with the route n. 6d and n. 7a, or walk for 45 minutes on path no. 6 until you reach the ridge that links trail n. 1 which connects Portovenere with Levanto.
From Volastra, in 2 hours along the old dirt road of the sanctuaries, you may reach the sanctuary of Montenero dating 1300, situated above the village of Riomaggiore, from where you can enjoy an amazing sea view. Continue reading →
From this year, on request, with small groups of guests, in the surroundings of Volastra we will organize guided visits at our vineyards’ cultivation, to understand the unbelievable and hard work done by generations in the fields of the Cinque Terre. These excursions will end visiting our home-winery where we produce the DOC wine and the 5 Terre Sciacchetrà, still using wooden barrels and a centenary press.
During the visit you will be introduced to the various and endless steps of cultivation.
It begins with the pruning of the vine shoots and its tying on wire pergolas. This process is still done by using the broom, a natural plant that guarantees 100% biodegradability. Continue reading →
On the night of 31st of January there was a very unusual weather event for our area. A heavy snowfall accompanied by strong winds, has generated a real snowstorm, which made us wake up under a thick white blanket, creating an unusual landscape for the National Park of Cinque Terre.
All of the five marine villages have been whitewashed by creating a Northen Sea landscape where the cliffs down the water were covered by a tick layer of snow as well as the terraces for the cultivation of the vineyards supported by dry stone walls have offered a incredible insight.
A snowfall of this magnitude had not happened since 1985, when the temperature dropped well below zero, causing serious damage to crops of citrus and olive trees.
Here you can enjoy the photos taken the next day by myself in the surroundings of Volastra and from the terrace of our B & B.
This year, also due to the catastrophic events of last autumn, we are working together with other residents of Volastra in the restoration of the paths that link our village to the other villages of the Cinque Terre.
First of all we started to restore path no. 6d which starts from the church of Volastra and reaches Corniglia in about 1 hour and 15 minutes. It goes through a little group of houses called Pianca and the beautiful terraced vineyards. This trail is very special due to the characteristic monorails used for transportation of the grapes, the Mediterranean olive trees and its beautiful sea view for the entire walk.
The work consisted in the restoration of some stone walls destroyed by heavy rainfall and in the cutting of vegetation that was going to obstruct the passages. Continue reading →
“Il Vigneto” is a family run B & B and it is called so, because our family is devoted to the cultivation of the vine, from the 800′s to the present day.
Our vineyards cover about 5,000 square meters on the heights of Volastra, 300 meters above sea level, just above the village of Manarola.
The cultivated land is on sloping hills and nowadays we are maintaining it thanks to the hard work of previous generations who had the ability to exploit this very steep territory by creating terraces supported by the famous typical dry stone walls, built with stones and dirt without any cement.
Our vines are supported by the so-called “autedo”, which is a typical pergola made of metal wires.
To give you an idea of the magnificence of our landscape, it is said that if one were to add all the dry walls of the Cinque Terre, their length would be equal to that of the Great Wall of China, s to say 6.350 kilometers!!!
That is the reason why the Cinque Terre have been included in the UNESCO World Heritage. Continue reading →
The B & B “Il Vigneto” with the commitment of our family, continues to work the land and preserve the traditions, such as dry stone walls, which are not only “features” but are also very useful. In fact, due to the extreme steepness of our region, collapsing walls occur cyclically, resulting problems for cultivation.
Thanks to the great experience we have, we provide the reconstruction of the collapsed walls, according to an ancient technique which consists in putting medium and large stones on the front and a lot of small stones on the back to fill the gap.
This technique allows rain to filter, ensuring adequate drainage and avoiding excessive pressure that the ground armies on the wall, causing it to collapse. Continue reading →