Marco Salvadori was born and raised amid the hills of Chianti district, and cultivated a strong work ethic and love of the land in his youth. His paternal grandfather worked for a prestigious estate in the Chianti area, and even as a child Marco accompanied him in his work, fascinated by the world of wine-making. He spent September afternoons out harvesting with his grandfather, admiring the skill with which the bunches of grapes were selected and the care with which they were placed in the colourful box and red crates, putting on his grandfather’s gloves even though he was not yet allowed to use the shears, getting excited when the grapes were taken into the winery. He was curious about these magical transformations even as a child, running after the harvesters’ tractor from the vineyard to the crusher-destemmer and watching enthralled as the worm screw turned grapes into what his grandfather called “Divine Juice”. This bond with the grape right from infancy planted the seed of Marco’s interest in the world of wine.
Marco enrolled in the degree programme in Viticulture and Oenology at Florence University, where he began exploring the wine business through his studies and summers of work experience in wine-growing and oenology. He graduated in 2008, specialising in grapevine pathologies and the impact of climatic and environmental factors on esca disease. Wine-making truly stole his heart when he underwent his first wine-making work experience at Fattoria Viticcio in Greve in Chianti; he has never looked back since.
Marco continued to work all over Tuscany, overseeing the harvest on prestigious estates in the Bolgheri, Montalcino and San Gimignano areas. Then he set off to travel the world, inspired by his travels and by the desire to learn more and discover different wine-making techniques in important wine-making regions in Australia, New Zealand, Argentina and Chile; his vast experience offered him an opportunity to get his hands on many of the wines in Wine Spectator’s famous Top 100 list.
Marco joined Casa Emma’s wine-making team as assistant oenologist in 2012, and was soon promoted to head oenologist. He continued his tradition of excellence, helping to develop some of the estate’s best wines and come up with new ones, producing them with a truly outstanding impact on the quality of the wine and the estate’s sustainability and safety programmes.
Marco’s presence in the winery led to production of authentic wines specific to the local area, with a special focus on Chianti Classico: innovative wines faithful to the style and character on which Casa Emma has built its reputation.
These wines were included in Wine Spectator’s Top 100 list in 2018, and have earned countless other honours in the world’s top wine magazines.
His specialisation in aspects of viticulture connected with climatic and environmental factors has allowed Marco to trigger the processes of the earth at Casa Emma, true to the principles of the circular economy; compost is produced with the help of 80 winemakers’ geese; and specific to the local soil, using goose manure collected daily in the goose coop along with plant residues (grapevine and olive tree prunings).
His studies and experience have allowed Marco to study the soils on the estate, producing different fertilisers for every single vineyard and seeding specific crops depending on the needs of the soil, moisture levels, exposure and sunshine, with different combinations of graminaceous, leguminous and cruciferous plants.
Marco’s love of wine starts with the soil and with his origins, while his studies and experience allow him to transform grapes into something truly diVine!