La Delizia – The Triumph of Small Farmers

April 11th, 2013


Dragging their feet in the dust, tired to the bone

the Germans now retreat, sheep lost in the fog. … 

In the villages bells ring as if to announce some holiday

with the yards swept neat and clean, with springtime fields

where gatherings of girls, their pony tails like sun rays,

pass under greening trellises on their way to hear mass

1945 — Pier Paolo Pasolini (1922-1975)


The farmers of La Delizia inaugurated their small cooperative winery more than 80 years ago, in May of 1931. Individually tiny, these 70 farming families recognized that by pooling their resources they could bring something special into the world.  Unfortunately, the Fascist governments in Rome and Berlin seemed to have different plans for Europe at that time.

Through years of Fascist terror, German occupation and Allied bombardment, Pier Paolo Pasolini faithfully documented the travails of the people of La Delizia. By 1945 nearly two years of Allied bombardment had reduced their village, and the Friulan landscape around it, to little more than a smoldering memory of a pastoral idyll.  As the Germans retreated, and the British and Americans moved in, the farmers surveying the wreckage of their small cooperative enterprise knew that they would have to start over.   

Pasolini perished in 1975, driven over repeatedly by his own car at his beach house outside Rome. La Delizia had come a long way since the end of World War II, and yet the great poet died too soon to witness the triumph of the farming families of La Delizia.

For in the ensuing decades after Pasolini’s untimely death, the farmers realized that to compete on an international scale they would need to invest in their vineyards and their winery in a very meaningful way. Their new approach might be summed up as a respect for tradition, along with a commitment to innovation.

The farmer’s commitment to quality is such that the vineyards are constantly monitored by the winery’s vineyard managers. The farmers pay particular attention to clonal selection, micro-climatic conditions and achieving perfect physiological ripeness for every cultivar.

We could not be more proud of the wines which we produce in partnership with the farming families of la Delizia. Cara Mia and Bella Donna are pure and honest Italian wines produced in small lots by artisan winemakers. The grapes are cultivated by dedicated family farmers who have been tending this land in northeastern Italy for generations.

It is a particular source of joy for us that the wines have been so well received in America, our home. Every bottle of Cara Mia and Bella Donna that you purchase helps to support a dream that began more than 80 years ago in a little farming village in the Italian countryside. The dream was that these subsistence farmers could come together to create a small cooperative winery that could support their families for generations to come.  The farmers of la Delizia are passionate about the wines that they craft. We hope that you will love these wines as much as we do. 

But don’t look for Cara Mia or Bella Donna in the big retail chains or national restaurant groups. Instead, look for our wines at your neighborhood restaurant or fine wine shop.