Berlucchi is the pioneering winery of Franciacorta wine. They were the first to create sparkling wine in the area, transforming a thousand-year-old local wine heritage into a world-class wine destination.
Nestled in the foothills of the Alps is the wine area of Franciacorta. It is here that in 1955 Berlucchi paved the first stones to transform a local wine heritage into the seat of Italy’s finest sparkling wines that are beloved all over the world.
The story begins with Guido Berlucchi and Franco Ziliani. The former was a descendant of the noble Lana de’ Terza family and the latter a young enologist from Alba Wine School who had developed a reputation for consulting important wineries.
Guido sought Franco’s advice for what he thought was a singular issue – how to stabilize his white “Pinot del Castello” wine – and instead, he found a partner together with whom he changed the course of history.
Franco recognized something that Guido, regardless of his passion for winemaking, missed: the incredible potential of his family’s estate to make sparkling wine that could compete with the likes of Champagne.
Franco’s vision and Guido’s passion were just the right pairing needed to embark on this pioneering path.
The two founded Berlucchi winery in 1955 and launched their first limited-production of 3,000 bottles of Pinot di Franciacorta in 1961 to great success. This pivotal year continues to be commemorated by the winery’s ’61 label. The first 1961 bottle is displayed in the cavernous underground cellar, where thousands of visitors are greeted each year for tours and tastings.
The seventeenth century underground cellar, located near the historic Palazzo Lana, guarantees the perfect temperature and humidity level for bottle aging, and the morainic soil rich in minerals is ideal for the cultivation of Pinot. Palazzo Lana was the residence of Guido Berlucchi until his death and seat of the noble Lana de ’Terzi family, his predecessors. The elegant lounges and halls have welcomed royal and prominent guests, making it a symbolic meeting place for the business community of Franciacorta.
Today, Berlucchi is managed by Franco Ziliani’s three children, Arturo, Paolo, and Cristina, who continue to push forward on the path set out by their father and Guido. They have taken the lead on promoting Franciacorta as a global wine destination, enhancing the environmental stewardship of the winery’s production and sharing Italy’s finest sparkling wine with the world.