This narrow stretch of impervious rock has many a thrill in store, surprising both the seaside tourist and the distracted local as it reveals glimpses of unforeseen treasures. Colla Micheri was precisely one of those treasures and it was love at first sight for us, a couple no longer in the first flush of youth and well-established in quite different careers. It was a love that stirred to life the quite Bohemian dream that two penniless agriculture graduates had pushed shyly to the back of their minds many years before. The dream of making wine on their own land.
Then there was the fateful encounter with a 90-year-old “elf,” the revolutionary and madcap Don Lisander, who wanted his estate to be safe from speculators so that his legacy of dry-stone terraces on impracticable slopes in this nook of Liguria would survive as he had conceived and built it.
This was when the dream emerged from its hiding place and no longer seemed quite such an impossible venture.
Today the elf rests in peace and his vineyard is still there: we haven’t moved a single stone or demolished any of its walls.
New elves now keep watch over it ....