A CENTURIES OLD FAMILY TRADITION
The Guerrieri family were active in the liberal professions in Verona at the beginning of the 17th century and from here they gradually invested in land in Valdadige, south of Verona and towards Lake Garda, for agriculture and forestation. In 1791 Count Vincenzo Guerrieri married Teresa Rambaldi, and he developed the wine and olive business in the inland areas of Bardolino. The estate remained in the family until the last descendant, Giuseppina Guerrieri, married Carlo Rizzardi.
The Rizzardi family was originally from Maderno in Lombardy. From the San Marco district of Verona, where they were successful merchants, they expanded by purchasing various properties, including Pojega in Negrar di Valpolicella, which was acquired by Count Carlo Rizzardi in 1649. At that time activities in Negrar included arable land, herbariums, forest management, viticulture, olive growing and cultivation of fruit trees. The development of the wine business in Negrar expanded in the 1800s when further land and vineyards were purchased in Calcarole, Rovereti and Tomenighe.
THE TWENTIETH CENTURY
In 1913, with the union of the two families the name Guerrieri-Rizzardi was created, and the first vintage with that label was in 1914. After the second world war Count Antonio Rizzardi managed and developed the farms, moving from polyculture to growing grapes in a more progressive way. The Soave estate was purchased in the 1970s and included the cellar located in the rural village of Costeggiola, where the grapes from our vineyards are still vinified. Upon the death of Antonio in 1983, his wife Maria Cristina Rizzardi Loredan found herself managing the entire business, which she expanded with new vineyards and wines, applying the concept of ‘Cru’ as a mark of quality that was restricted to a well-defined vineyard. She became President of the Garda Oil Protection Consortium in 1984, and obtained the recognition of the extra virgin olive oil in Garda DOP and in 2010 she was awarded Cavaliere del Lavoro by the President of the Italian Republic.
THE NEW MILLENNIUM
The third generation joined the company from the late 1990s, with Giuseppe, Orsola, Olimpia and Agostino Rizzardi. The company’s goal is unchanged, namely the creation of ‘estate produced and bottled’ wines, retaining control of the entire production chain in-house. New vineyards have been planted with different grape varieties in accordance with the type of soil, and the system of nurturing different varieties of vine is being improved to increase the quality of the wines. In recent years Guerrieri-Rizzardi has joined the ‘Historical Wine Families’ Association and the ‘Les Hénokiens’ Association of 200-year old family businesses. Today, Guerrieri-Rizzardi is a dynamic company, not only in the world of wine, but also in tourism and hospitality, originally started by Antonio Rizzardi, subsequently in Bardolino with Rambaldi apartments and Borgo Bardolino, and in Negrar with the Pojega Garden and Villa Rizzardi.