The Nardini distillery in Bassano
The Nardini family’s distillery was built in 1779, near the head of the bridge in Bassano del Grappa, where history has left its mark time and time again over the centuries. First constructed in 1209, the structure was re-built by Andrea Palladio in 1569, and then was re-built again every time it was destroyed: after the river Brenta went in full spate in 1748; after Eugène de Beauharnais set it on fire in 1813; after it collapsed in 1945, due to an antifascist partisan sabotage.
The ‘Alpini’ – that is, the mountain soldiers of the Italian army – crossed this bridge during the First World War, under the command of General Cadorna. Traditional songs, and some grappa, were all those men had to keep their bodies and souls warm in the trenches.
The Nardini Distillery has watched the river flow past, for the past two centuries in history. It has survived the decline of the Republic of Venice and the fall of Napoleon’s empire, and has witnessed the Austrian occupation, Italy’s Unification, two world wars, and the birth of the Republic.
In the meantime – inside the distillery, which remained unchanged over these two hundred years and has recently been included amongst the Historic Places of Italy – steam distillation was invented and grappa was left to age in oak barrels, new techniques were tested to carry out production at lower temperatures, and innovative technologies were implemented…
In this corner of the earth, a distillate of history.