In 1897 it was nothing more than a small tavern, a wine shop located in Contra – a small hamlet of the nearby town of Missaglia, where Casa Vinicola Caldirola still has its headquarters. It is in this place that the story of Mr. Ferdinando Caldirola and his kin had its beginning, tying their family name and the Italian people in a bond that would last for three generations.

In the 1940s, he and his son Gaetano turned their tavern into a more structured, articulate business in which other family members started to work.

In the 1960s, with the help of six more associates, they began to bottle wine. The equipment used was simple, and the business small – but functional. People in the area liked and appraised Caldirola’s wines which came in glass bottles, demijohns, and kegs. Such containers were not yet labelled, but simply embossed with the words “Vini Caldirola” (“Caldirola Wines”). The Quarter Bottles – the ones containing 0,25 litres of wine each – became particularly popular in the following decade as corporate canteens and cafeterias began to include them as beverage choices for their employees. In the meantime, the names of the clients served by Casa Vinicola Caldirola had become more and more notable: e.g. Innocenti, Alfa, Bianchi, Falck, Pirelli, Vismara…

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