Chiara Boschis to us is the first “real” female winemaker that Piemonte has seen. Real, because Chiara did not inherit her winery, but decided to acquire it in 1980.
As the daughter of 8 generations of winemakers, she at the age of 20 decided to go her own ways. Instead of working with her parents and her two brothers at their family Estate, Borgogno, she took the risky step and purchased the E. Pira e Figli winery in the heart of Barolo and with that some important Barolo vineyards. Chiara was full of ideas and passion and feared that working with her family might not give her the freedom that she wanted in order to realize her ideas. She reached out to fellow winemakers in order to cooperate and learn from each other and joined the today somewhat famous group, called Barolo boys, of which Giorgio Rivetti also took part. Being the only female, she had to live with the name Barolo Boys!
In fact until very recently, Piedmont wine making was solely in the hands of men.
For many years, Chiara was working on her own, managing the production both in the vineyard as well as in the cellar. She was the first woman, who knew how to grow grapes, make wine in the cellar and go out to fairs and events to sell.
In 2010 her brothers decided to sell Borgono winery. Cesare was tired of the wine making business and had other plans, while Giorgio joined Chiara and took over the work in the cellar.
"To me that was a great relief”, Chiara says, when her brother took over the cellar work, because her real passion in wine making is the grape growing process. She adores to wake up early and to go out into the vineyard and work. “Being outside and following the developments of the vineyard growth is what I love most”.
Her passion for the vineyard is reflected in her work, as Chiara was the first Barolo producer who changed to a biological production. While in general she is not a technology driven person, she embraces all the new technology and software available to monitor the conditions in the vineyard. “The better I understand the plant and its environment the better I may intervene and by better, I also mean less”.
Going against the mono culture of the Barolo region, she planted trees, plants and even cleaned up the little forests around her vineyards in order to create bio diversity. “Every year my bees produce more honey, meaning that they have found a happy and sane environment”.
Having created better conditions in the vineyard, using less product possible, Chiara is able to grow top quality fruit, even if in some vintages it implies very little production. “I rather produce little of great quality than vice versa, even if it means that I am always sold out and my clients are upset with me that I don’t have enough wine.”
We at Wine Tender feel largely honored that Chiara is joining our community. “I like the concept of Wine Tender, giving people the opportunity to gain more hands-on wine knowledge as well as enjoying everything there is to enjoy around great wine, she says.”
And while she has no wine to sell, as it is all allocated, she told us, “I want to be part of your project and I am sure we will find a little bit of my Barolo for your members to purchase”.