How a Village United to Save Cinque Terre's Ancient Terraces

Mar 23, 2021 318

BY: Guia Baggi

On the terraced, steep-sided hills the locals call the Amphitheater of the Giants, Alessandro Crovara takes the monorail to work. Unlike the sleek, single-track trains cruising through cities the world over, the monorails in this corner of northwestern Italy are old tractors that pull flatbed wagons slowly along a narrow metal rail, carrying farmers and their equipment and, at harvest time, boxes and boxes of grapes.

Crovara tends vines in small terrace parcels that, in total, equal the size of a single soccer field. In one plot, he grows Vermentino grapes; in another, he hopes to plant Bosco soon. The two varieties of grape, along with a third, Albarola, are synonymous with this coastal area, Cinque Terre, and are as much a part of the region as the ancient terraces.

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