“When I look back at my past, I see its true that each one was born with a fate; if you want it happen, you need to choose the roads that seem impossible or difficult to travel: that is why at the age of 37 I became a winemaker.”
My name is Susanna Grassi, I cultivate vines and olive groves in the Chianti Classico, the heart of Tuscan wine production, in a estate, named Casole, which belonged to my family since 1600 as evidenced by the ancient documents lovingly preserved my father Giuliano.
As a child I had always planned to take care of our farm, I wanted to become a winegrower, but then the life has taken me elsewhere. I lived abroad for many years, then in 1988 a degree in economics has opened to me the marvelous doors of the fashion world where I learned how to organize a company: regardless of sector and size, anyone who produces something to sell needs a corporate structure able to respond to the market, without differences for the wine sector.
In the late 90s my agricultural destiny begins to come forward thanks to a random commercial role: this experience brought me back to the old family property that we had abandoned, this place was so different, empty and sad, but still characterized by a staggering beauty. This is the begin of my adventure at I Fabbri winery. I started with no specific experience, I only had so many good memories and three clear ideas: give equal dignity to that place, producing typical high-quality wines in a traditional way and sell bottles with our brand.
Casole belongs to the Grassi family since 1600. The Grassi were winemakers, but also blacksmiths: they owned a workshop which was situated in the ancient village of Casole, exposed to small farms which were flanked for many years by agriculture. Here the name of this place and company originates.
Olinto, Susanna’s great-grandfather dedicated his life to this endurance, he was a modern, forward –looking man. During the 20’s he started to sell bottled wine, a thing that in the past was not ordinary. After Olinto, Roberto inherited all the land. Roberto was a bank director, he loved this place so much that he took care of it like it was his child. But he chose to sell the grapes, instead of the wine: surely a profitable decision that made all of his father’s effort worthless. Throughout the 60’s Giuliano, Susanna’s father received all the land. Giuliano was an intelligent and brilliant engineer, with a promising career in the energy field: he decided to leave the country abroad, where he lived, to go back at home and look after the estate, but the difficulties of those years made him give the property in management.
After some years in which the territory was abandoned, in 2000 Susanna and Maddalena Grassi founded I Fabbri. The return to the old property, empty but always so beautiful this awoke Susanna’s will to reclaim all those values and all that love for the land that was always accompanied by her family. With the dream to produce typical and quality wines, bottled with it own brand, like this I Fabbri found again a new “pink” management.
For loads of aspects viticulture is still mainly masculine, women who are winemakers – in Tuscany and in the world- have proved to have a particular awareness, a naïf intuition, an orientation to the elegance and kindness. This is also for I Fabbri.
I believe that whoever works the earth, whoever loves nature and is willing to accept all of it consequences, has a great soul strength and inner spirituality. A spirituality that fully express itself with the intense connection to the places, terracing, cultures, landscapes and all those vineyards that are cured daily like a child by us. Susanna Grassi