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Our Story

Our family hails from Montemaggiore Belsito, a small mountain village in southern Italy where organically-grown food and hand-crafted products abound. This is where Vincent’s father and forefathers farmed the land, made wine, and spent every Sunday surrounded by family at the dinner table, enjoying the fruits of their labor.

Our personal Montemaggiore is a small mountainside country estate in northern California where we, the Ciolino family, grow grapes and olives for our hand-crafted wines and olive oils. We are a husband-and-wife team: Vincent grows the grapes and Lise makes the wine. Our family values are true to Montemaggiore Belsito—we live in harmony with the land, keep close family ties, and enjoy wonderful food and festivity.

We found our Montemaggiore as newlyweds in 2001: a 10-acre vineyard planted to Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon on a 55-acre mountainside in Sonoma County.  Over the years, we’ve passionately pursued our goal of producing world-class Syrahs from our extraordinary estate vineyards.  We’ve planted Tuscan olive trees for olive oil, added farm animals, and installed solar power in order to diversify and be more self-sufficient.  With our small family farm, our ultimate goal is to produce not only delicious wines but wines that you are proud to share with your family and friends.

We live amongst our vineyards, thus we are intent on improving the water and soils, flora and fauna. We grow all our grapes and olives using organic and Biodynamic® farming practices.  We installed solar panels to provide our estate’s electrical needs.  We conserve and reuse water, capturing rainwater over the winter and reusing winery wastewater to irrigate the vineyards. We compost to reduce our waste and build up our soils.  We aim to leave this world, or at leave this spot in Sonoma County, a better place than we found it.

Mountain Grown Wines

Why do mountain grapes produce such good wines? 

Montemaggiore is pronounced
Mohn teh ma JOHR ray
(waving your hands helps)

My father left Italy and came to America so that his children wouldn’t have to be farmers. Ultimately, he was very proud of my “farm” in California.Vincent