Villa Calicantus
Chiar'otto Bardolino Classico Chiaretto - 2019
7.40 / 10

Rose Still, Dry
Villa Calicantus
Italy, Bardolino DOC
Corvina, Rondinella, Molinara, Sangiovese
702 UAH

Chiar’otto is a wordplay and a tribute to Daniele’s nuclear family. Chiaretto (meaning “pale” in Italian) is the name used for rosé wines produced near the shores of Lake Garda (this is where Villa Calicantus located). Chiara is Daniele’s wife. And “otto” is the Italian word for the number 8, which is the number of the month in which Anna, the daughter of Chiara and Daniele, was born.

Made of traditional grapes of the Bardolino region from 54 years old vines. 9001 bottles produced.


Some people have to spend a lot of time until they find a path to their favourite craft. Daniele Delaini, a descendant of one of the largest growers of Bardolino in the past, changed several jobs until he ‘returned’ to his abandoned family estate. After a stink in banking and an attempt to sell Italian wines in Paris, he went to Villa Calicantus, which he inherited from his aunt. The name of the estate comes after her favourite flowering plant.

Daniele started with one hectare of vines around the villa. But the inherited estate was abandoned for many years, and its cellar required complete renovation. And so, in 2011, Daniele was forced to make his first vintage in a nearby garage.

Let’s be honest, Bardolino’s reputation is quite questionable. For many years many farmers and winemakers were focused on quantity over quality. This resulted in flabby, soulless, and low-quality wines destined to be consumed by unfortunate tourists. Of course, I am exaggerating, but this descent sculped the face of this region.

Villa Calicantus was not operational during the times of industrial and chemical boom that happened in this region. So the nearly forty-year gap in his family’s involvement in Bardolino played a crucial role in Daniele’s philosophy.

Our goal is to bring Bardolino back on the map of great Italian wines, through a rediscovery of the true identity of wine with enormous potential.

Today Villa Calicantus owns 8 hectares of vineyards on some of the highest sites in the appellation. As they say, exceptional wine is made in vineyards, so Daniele farmed organically since day one. In 2014 he started the conversion to biodynamics. Each wine comes from only one specific area. Each wine tells a story of a specific vintage, a specific vineyard from a specific sub-area of Bardolino.

In the cellar, nothing is added except for little doses of sulfur. Wine is fermented with indigenous grape yeasts, decanted and bottled following the lunar cycles, not filtered, and not clarified.


2022-08-23 - 7.40

Many people around me praise this producer, but I find it both fascinating and confusing at the same time. I love the story behind it. I love the effort. But most of the time, it lacks something to be enjoyable without any buts (one ‘t’, mind you!). Say hello to flowers, pumpkin, peach and pomelo. But don’t forget about nuanced balance. It lacks acidity (medium, but still!) and has an unpleasantly bitter aftertaste. Overall, it’s simple and shy wine with good wordplay in the name (Chiara and August making Chiaretto).

Wine #2 on Sin Titulo.