The 11th of April was the day dedicated to Leonardo, the Wine Genius: a full immersion of culture and food, nature and in wine, set in the heart of Vinci, to start a formidable story.
The engagement took place at the Teatro della Misericordia in Vinci where Federico Quaranta, accompanied by Ludovica Frasca, presented the project by Leonardo da Vinci Spa and the protagonists of a new and fascinating story about the lesser known side of the Genius: his passion for wine.
This coming-together was an occasion to present to the public the results of the research, investigation and analytical work, which involved a team of Leonardo experts, to collect and codify all the existing material as evidence of Leonardo's authentic and daily relationship with wine and of his studies in agronomy and oenology. The results of this work has been transformed by Leonardo da Vinci Spa into: an agronomic and oenological method to produce wine, an in-depth book, an exciting art-house documentary, and two museums in Vinci dedicated to the most contemporary Genius of all.
"2019 is an important year - it is the 500th anniversary of the passing of the greatest Genius of all time, and we are here to investigate and discover an unpublished side of Leonardo: Winelover & Winemaker." began Federico Quaranta, calling Simon Pietro Felice, Managing Director of Leonardo da Vinci Spa, on stage.
"We have gathered all of Leonardo's teachings on wine to bring them to light and make them current, and produce a wine he would be proud of." explained Felice,"Our goal is to tell the whole world the formidable story of Leonardo and wine”
The experts and scholars of Leonardo were also on stage, including the sensory analyst Luca Maroni, who together with the oenologists of Leonardo da Vinci Spa developed the Metodo Leonardo®. The method is based on a letter that the Genius sent to his farmer in 1515 with precise indications to obtain a quality wine. The Metodo Leonardo, as Maroni explained, is today a viticultural and oenological specification - exclusive and secret - with which 5 different wine collections have been produced: Villa Da Vinci, I Capolavori, 1502 Da Vinci In Romagna, Leonardo da Vinci Vitruviano, and Gentile. The creation of the method and its philological origins were collected by Maroni in the volume Leonardo da Vinci e il vino.
"It is a project also driven by the desire to give back to Vinci a small part of what Vinci gave to Leonardo," said Felice, regarding the reopening of the Museo Ideale Leonardo da Vinci and the construction of a new museum dedicated to Leonardo's relationship with agriculture and viticulture, the Leonardo Museum and the Renaissance of Wine, confirming the cultural value of the project itself. Both museums are under the direction of Alessandro Vezzosi, Leonardo's scholar, who unveiled the contents of the two exhibition sites that will officially open on May 2nd.
Giovanni Storaro and Marco Carosi, respectively producer and director of the documentary Il Vino di Leonardo, recalled some curiosities about the shooting of the cinematographic work that investigates the Genius’ passion for wine through his life and his masterpieces, from his childhood in Vinci and up to the famous Cenacolo, The Last Supper, of which a scene in the documentary, illuminated by the master Vittorio Storaro, is dedicated.
But Leonardo was also attentive to food, the subject of his drawings, riddles and writings. For this reason, Chef Cristina Bowerman devised an unusual menu dedicated to Leonardo for the occasion. "I imagined cooking for Leonardo da Vinci - a multifaceted genius that projected his ideas into the future, so that his vision of the world is, and was, able to cross the boundaries of his time. I created a menu that was a tribute to Leonardo's genius and his life, with original, multi-sensory dishes, where flavors play with forms, technique is in dialogue with the raw material, and science with art and agriculture ".
The day continued at Villa da Vinci, the estate surrounded by the vineyards that once belonged to Leonardo's family. There the guests enjoyed the menu created by Bowerman - including mini sandwiches of veal tongue pastrami, peppercorn sauce and
Tuscan salami, new potatoes cooked on charcoal with Tuscan prosciutto
mayonnaise, or black garlic gnocchetti, fava beans and candied lemon - And discovered wines inspired by the Genius, obtained according to the Metodo Leonardo® Method, in five tasting stations.
Inside and outside the Villa, the guests were able to experience a wine resort with 6 rooms accompanied by eclectic performances of music and dance thanks to the involvement of artists who interpreted, each with their own personality, one of the aspects of the Genius's creativity: from the Vitruvian acrobatics of Roue Cyr, to the dancers of the Sonics company, and up to Sara Loreni's loop station.
With the launch of the project, the inauguration of the museums, and the opening of Villa da Vinci, a new story of Leonardo begins from his hometown and projects all over the world, where for centuries his story has never ceased to be always current and fascinating.