Around 15 minutes drive south-west lies a hill covered in vineyards. A large farmhouse on the top called Cascina Preziosa is home to Gianni Selva Bonino and lends its name to his winery. The hill is in a nature reserve called Baraggia, which lies exactly where the hills end and the flatland begins, and the view from the hill stretches endlessly. Three grape varieties grow here: the locally, very common Nebbiolo and Vespolina, and the less frequently grown Barbera. Gianni’s three wines are full-bodied and powerful, yet contain many subtle notes of red fruit, from strawberry to cherry, along with notes of vanilla and coffee.
Il More is the name of an unusual Vespolina, packed with red berry and toasty notes with hints of wild flowers and mushrooms. Djarmai is an equally unusual (in Coste della Sesia) blend of Barbera and Nebbiolo. A beautiful ruby red, it contains cherry notes from Barbera that soften the tannic strawberry notes from Nebbiolo and make it easier to drink in its youth. Castleng is an elegant Nebbiolo, with a nice, dark purple velvety robe and a complex bouquet of red berries, cherries, plums, tobacco and leather.
The sandy hill on which these grapes grow, rich in fossils and minerals, is beautifully expressed in these three wonderful wines.