We are at the Poli Grappa Museum in Schiavon, in front of the so-called “The alembic by Lonicero”, that takes its name by an important German botanist, Adam Lonicer, in Latin language Lonicerus, who wrote an important herbarium, published for the first time in 1557, where he described hundreds of herbs And aromatic plants suitable to be distilled.
There is an important section just dedicated to the alembics, hence the necessary instruments to distil these herbs.
Among the various alembics, we find the one we reconstructed at the Museum, that is the ancestor of the modern distillation plants and that we still use today to distil the grape marc. Besides, we find a pretty xylograph, hence a wood engraving, where the whole concept of distillation dated 1500 is contained.
On the bottom, left side we find some boys picking up the simple ones, or rather the herbs and substances intended to be distilled.
On the bottom, left side the wise men consult each other about the most suitable way to use these plants and on the bottom, right side we see two helpers pressing the herbs in the mortar and distilling them with a rather complex alembic.
On the background, on the top right side, a medic near a patient, dispensing some eau-de-vie to him, this long-lived elixir, that was believed to be able to heal any disease.
Next to the medic there was also a nurse, so in a single picture the entire cycle of distillation is contained.
Adam Lonicer became a really important medic of Frankfurt, and married the publisher’s wife, and when the father-in-law died he became director of this publishing house, he posted as many as four editions of this important herbarium, which represents a milestone in the history of distillation.
From here, the studies continued, this allowed to develop more and more efficient alembics, to distil the most diverse raw materials, including the grape skins, from which Grappa is obtained.
Buona Grappa everyone.
Watch the video with Jacopo Poli: