It is difficult to describe the feeling you have when standing in the middle of Contratto's historic "Cathedral" UNESCO world-heritage wine cellar, beneath the hill of Canelli.
The tour takes you through all the different processes of producing metodo classico, you are shown bottles in all the different stages of fermentation, and if you're lucky you get to assist the enologist, Mauro Ferraro, manually doing the remuage of each individual bottle (they produce 200.000 per year).
The visit is completed with a tasting paired with local cheeses, cured meats and breads. The first spumante we tasted was a 2012 "millesimato" Brut which was a mix of Pinot Noir and chardonnay. The bottle had spent 60 months in the second fermentation phase and therefore had an extremely elegant bubble. The second was a pas dosè (no liquer d'expedition is added before corking the bottle) "millesimato" with Pinot Noir and Chardonnay grapes. And the third and final bottle we tasted was a Cuvée from 2009 with Chardonnay grapes spent 7 months in French oak barriques.
Contratto winery is a must see, it narrates a part of the Piedmontese wine heritage.