The distillery was built by Serafino Levi and was fitted, then as now, with a direct-fire still, as we are told during one of the rare interviews with the son Romano in 1991:
“… in those days there were so many of them … usually distilleries operated with direct-fire stills. A Malba device, because I always heard the name Malba being mentioned, then I saw that at the Bocchino distillery, which has a room with stills in sight, there was Malba Giovanni Ricostruzioni Meccaniche Asti or Malba Fratelli (Malba Brothers) or something like that, and the one we have should be a Malba device … for me, who I think can now say to know about it quite well, if not extremely well, since I’ve been distilling for 46 years, it is a very good device. It is a little gem, a toy, that if one gives it what it wants, what is necessary, if you do not push it, if it suits it, it does wonders…
… I think that this Giovanni Malba was a distiller because they made this equipment very well; as well as designing it, if they designed it, they have made it very well”.
The Levi house-distillery is now a living, Grappa production museum, a real time capsule, where the Genius Loci of Romano Levi, hovers everywhere in art, in the method and time of work, in the simple and basic objects, scents and serenity. The distillery is always open to everyone, it’s a bit more difficult is to find some bottles ready for sale, as the very low production capacity cannot meet the demand that comes from all over the world, but connoisseurs are aware of this, they enjoy the serenity of the place, don’t get angry and wait or try again patiently.
Distilleria Romano Levi pictures