Photo by Gerald Weisl.
Venerated and beloved producer of Barolo, Barbera, and Arneis, Alfredo Currado has died. He was 78 years old.
In 1957, Currado married Luciana Vietti and in 1960, following the death of his father-in-law, he began to manage the Vietti winery.
According to the winery’s website, he earned his degree in enology in 1952 and “was the first to select and vinify grapes from single-vineyard sites, a concept considered radical at the time but today applied by nearly all the wineries that produce Barolo and Barbaresco. The first Vietti ‘crus’ were born in 1961 with Barolo Rocche and Barabresco Masseria.”
Widely known as the “father of Arneis,” Currado was “the first to rediscover the Arneis grape variety” and the first to vinify it as a monovarietal wine. He will also be remembered for his “pioneering” series of artist labels, which he launched in 1970. A wide range of celebrated writers and painters would contribute labels to Vietti’s wines, including: Gianni Gallo, Eso Peluzzi, Pietro Cascella, Mino Maccari, Pier Paolo Pasolini, Claudio Bonichi, Valerio Miroglio, Pierflavio Gallina, Gioxe de Micheli, Janet Fish, Robert Cuttingham, and Wayne Thiebaud.
Beyond his “greatness as a grape-grower and winemaker,” wrote VinoWire editor Franco Ziliani today in a heartfelt remembrance, Alfredo Currado was an “authentic ‘ambassador of Barolo, especially in the United States.” Like another of the “great elders” of the appellation, Bartolo Mascarello, he believed that “producers of masterworks like Barolo shared a mission of cultural expression.”