Perched on the rooftop of a 16th-century mansion in the heart of Reggio Emilia, Via Mari 10 – named for its name and street number – is no ordinary vineyard as many people think it is. Not only is the area extremely small, this garden produces a very modest amount of wine. However, the most special thing about Via Mari 10 wine is that visitors are advised not to drink. The reason for this recommendation is simple, it’s because of the incredible price tag for a bottle of wine. The owner of the garden views the 29 bottles of wine that this gardener produces every year as a work of art that should be collected and admired rather than sipped. Therefore, the price of a bottle of wine can be up to about 5,000 USD (about 117.7 million VND).
“My wine is a form of artistic expression, a philosophical provocation, something to keep in your living room so you can chat about it with your friends and tell them about the mad owner. crazy has planted vineyards on the terrace,” Tulio Masoni, owner of Via Mari 10, told the press. How beautiful it is. My vineyard is like that: Surprise; stimulate the brain; spark new ideas.”
Masoni established many other special vineyards after selling the rural vineyard he inherited from his father. At the time, he thought running a vineyard wouldn’t make much financial sense, but he later regretted it. So he decided to start his own miniature vineyard on the terrace of the medieval palace he owned.
Many local sources say that the Sangiovese vines in the special garden Via Mari 10 are fertilized with eggs, bananas, seaweed and nightingale droppings. The garden’s owner, Tulio Masoni, adds that urban noise is another advantage the garden has over country vines.
“I’m probably the only winemaker in the world that advises customers not to drink,” Masoni said. He adds that each bottle of wine is a work of art designed to be admired, not drunk.
Even for those who are willing to spend money to buy these bottles, the buying and selling process is not easy. Customers cannot buy Via Mari 10 at regular liquor stores or even in the courtyard itself. Instead, they are distributed through the local Bonioni Art Gallery at $5,000 a bottle. Although this price seems too high for a bottle of wine, but if customers see it as a work of art to collect, the price is considered reasonable.
According to Bonioni, there are always 10 bottles of Via Mari 10 available with a lifespan ranging from a few decades to the latest, even if the product is said to be sold out every year. However, the owner of the vineyard, Mr. Masoni, shared that not all are bought. Quite a few of these bottles were given away by the gallery as gifts to their loyal customers.
The high price makes many people curious about the taste of this exclusive wine. Masoni describes it this way: “at the first sip, you will feel confused, but after a few seconds, something will come to life on the palate, leaving you full of new ideas.” However, with the current expensive price of the product, perhaps not everyone has the opportunity to experience what Masoni describes.
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