Tuscany, Italy


Ca’Marcanda, GAJA’s estate in Bolgheri (Alta Maremma), was born in 1996 propelled by Angelo Gaja’s ambition to challenge himself with Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Merlot.  

The search for the best terroir was possible thanks to the latest land zoning maps which pointed out the specific vine growing suitability of clayey-calcareous soils at the foot of the Metalliferous Hills. These are firm clayey soils, therefore fresh and suitable for water and mineral preservation, which slow down ripening and result in fresh and acidic wines. Eventually, the only land in that area not planted with vines was identified, and after several meetings with the previous owners, the negotiations successfully closed at the end of 1996. For this reason, the name  Ca’Marcanda derives from a Piedmontese dialect expression which can be translated as the “The House of Endless Negotiations”. This land was uncultivated and used for breeding and fruit growing; this was a unique opportunity to entirely design a winery on an untouched land, which started with the selection from the soil, to the different varieties and ultimately the cellar structure. 

GAJA’s ambition is to produce wines reflecting the characteristics of Bolgheri: balanced by a middle structure, moderate alcohol and a vibrant expression of freshness. 

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Bolgheri is located in a small area that, for the Gaja family, represents the new era of Italian winemaking, younger if compared to the Langhe area, but also open and dynamic, with a distinguished personality thanks to its climate, soil and history.  

The first vineyards were planted in 1996, (no vines were growing from previous ownership.) There are 300 acres of vineyards, divided between Bolgheri (170 acres, bought in 1996 where the winery is located) and Bibbona (120 acres, gradually bought over the last 20 years). 

Bibbona is the neighboring town of Bolgheri, situated on the left side of Bolgheri Boulevard. In both areas the three main soil components are: sand, clay and limestone. Based on the amount of each component, soils are distinguished by color: dark soils and white soils. 

Darker soils are rich in sand and clay and give light, drinkable, approachable wines. In whiter soils, clay is always present, but sand is replaced by limestone and stones, which give aging potential, refinement, elegance and structure. 

The vineyards are located in between the mountains and the sea, at an altitude ranging from 130 feet to 250 feet. 

The road was built in the 19th century and is 3 miles long, surrounded by 2500 cypresses. For the Gaja family, this boulevard is a symbol of special significance which, with the management of the land, adorns and safeguards these places for the benefit of the future generations.  

The label of Ca’Marcanda pays tribute to the image of the cypress trees and the Bolgheri boulevard, merging with the horizon (two white triangles represent the road and the sky, whereas the colored ones are the cypresses.) 

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