Marco Tait: Winemaker & Oenologist, Ampeleia

Founded in 2002, Ampeleia is the collaboration between friends Elisabetta Foradori, Thomas Widmann and Giovanni Podini. It is a shared vision of wine production, whose guiding principle in all winemaking procedures is to preserve the integrity of the grapes and wine. The vines in Ampeleia grow at a range of altitudes and on different soils: the great geological variety found in the area around Roccatederighi represents a rich pool of diversity. From the rocks of this medieval village, one descends to the coast and sea, in a landscape woven with countless fields hidden in the dense vegetation of Mediterranean scrub and holm-oak woods. Today, the estate extends over three altitude levels and covers 35 hectares of vineyard producing an average of 150,000 bottles annually.

Marco Tait oversees all aspects of wine production at Ampeleia. In a brief moment away from the vines, we talk to him.

Marco, what makes you want to be a winemaker?

I feel that I am still learning how to be a winemaker and I enjoy learning new things everyday along the way.

How many years have you been making wine?

I’ve been making wine since 2002.

Have you worked for any other producers previously?

I started by working near home where I am from, in Trentino, at Foradori.

Which other producers do you admire?

I admire the honest ones.

If you hadn’t become a winemaker, what would be your dream job?

I would have been a baker.

What do you like best about your job?

I am in contact with nature and I follow its patterns.

What is your favourite type of wine to drink?

At the moment it’s Cabernet Franc.

What is the most challenging aspect of your job?

To not judge.

What is your winemaking philosophy/approach to making wine?

I don’t intervene with nature.

Is there one person who has influenced your style of winemaking more than anyone else?

Yes, Elisabetta Foradori.

What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned during your winemaking career?

I’ve learnt to have faith.

You find yourself on a desert island with three of your favourite wines, which ones would they be?

Barolo, Teroldego, Loira.

If you had to choose your last meal what would it be?

I’d choose local dishes: Tortel di patate, risotto with aromatic herbs, oh and tiramisù!

Favourite place ever visited?

All the places I haven’t yet seen.

What’s your favourite film?

I don’t have a favourite in particular. Among those I like, I’d say Mediterraneo by Gabriele Salvatores and La Pazza Gioia by Poalo Virzì.

Image courtesy of Ampeleia.

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