The commercial farm ‘Azienda Agricola Barone Cornacchia’ is among the oldest winery in the province of Teramo. The land tenure was established at the end of the 16th century by feudal concession of the viceroy of Naples and with the appointment of a barony title. At that time the Baroni Cornacchia family dwelt in the Fortress of Civitella and controlled the fiefs situated on the north-eastern border of the Bourbon kingdom. At the end of the 19th century, with the Unification of Italy and after a long period of battles, the Cornacchia family had to leave the Fortress of Civitella and retreated in the hunting reserve where the present company is located.
This area has always had a vocation for viticulture and grapevine has always been cultivated. Barone Filippo Maria Vizzarro Cornacchia (1872-1944) restored and handed down this old viticultural tradition. After the devastating infestation of phylloxera that spread all over Italy at the beginning of the 20th century, Barone Filippo Vizzarro Cornacchia selected the ancient clones to replant and graft all vineyards using American rootstocks. At the beginning of the 20th century he started to produce ‘Montepulciano d’Abruzzo’ wine and used it to participate in national competitions, receiving the first official awards [ 1932 - 1933 ].
In confirmation of the excellent vocation of the soils destined to viticulture, in 1969 the clone Montepulciano R7 was selected from a vineyard of ‘Azienda Agricola Barone Cornacchia’. It was defined ‘teramano biotype’ and it is still widely used and common in the production of ‘Montepulciano d’Abruzzo DOC’.
At that time everything was cultivated and processed by hand. From an oenological viewpoint, Barone Filippo Cornacchia pioneered in Abruzzo as he turned to oenological guidance and consultants, even at that time present in the Region (Professor Antonio Marescalchi - 1926), thus creating a quality product with a strong personal identity.
In the next generation of the family Alessandro Cornacchia (1940-1992), ‘Cavaliere della Repubblica’ (Knight of the Italian Republic) and surgeon, produced and bottled the ‘Montepulciano d’Abruzzo’ using his own label. He also participated in several national oenological competitions and in various oenological events, getting important awards (Gold Medal Diploma - first festival of wines from Abruzzo 1967, Gold Metal Diploma ‘Pramaggiore’ 1971, Gold Metal Diploma of Honour, quality award for typical wines from Abruzzo 1978, Diploma of Merit for the prestigious participation in the 13th ‘Vinitaly’ 1979).
In the Eighties his son and current owner, Mr. Piero Cornacchia, took a very important step forward by exporting his ‘Montepulciano d’Abruzzo Barone Cornacchia’ to Europe, United States of America, Japan. He modernized the company and adopted the best technology in the oenological sector, creating two guidelines that are still the basis of the company philosophy: enhance the typicality of Montepulciano d’Abruzzo, result of the uniqueness of the soil in this area of Abruzzo, and work the soil naturally, both agronomically and oenologically.
With Mr. Piero Cornacchia the wines ‘Vigna le Coste’ (a reserve wine awarded with 98/100 points by Robert Parker ) and the historic label ‘Poggio Varano’ (used, in the 80s, to introduce the use of barriques) have been introduced. He has been among the first ones, in Abruzzo, to take part in the ‘Vinitaly’ festival and has won many national and international prizes and oenological awards.
Today the company is led by his son Filippo and daughter Caterina Cornacchia who have been able to achieve the organic certification of the company and of the products and to introduce new wines such as the ‘Controguerra DOC Passerina Villa Torri’, the ‘Pecorino Villa Torri IGT Colli Aprutini’ as well as the ‘Montepulciano d’Abruzzo Colline Teramane DOCG Vizzarro’ (devoted to the founder of the company: Barone Filippo Maria Vizzarro Cornacchia). This wine has been awarded a Gold Medal at the International Oenological Competition ‘Vinitaly’, in 2007.