There are few places that are as captivating to me as the rolling green hills of the Tuscan countryside.
I can’t quite remember what associated this particular countryside with romance in my mind – perhaps it was the early 2000’s rom-com called Letters to Juliet with Amanda Seyfried, or any Italian Vogue magazine whilst I was growing up. Either way – it’s a perfect setting to have a romantic getaway, or even to take the day visiting a winery tucked into its hills and valleys.
For our birthdays this year, my partner and I decided to go into the Tuscan countryside and visit Marchesi Antinori’s Chianti Classico winery. I believe I even told him, “all I want for my birthday is a glass of Tignanello”. It’s my favourite wine – and what better place to have a glass then at the winery responsible for its production?
Luckily, he thought it was a good idea. But being a massive architecture fan – I think he agreed at first because of the iconic Antinori staircase. Though I don’t think he will ever confirm nor deny that.
Touring Marchesi Antinori
“It is a sacred place of silence, a temple dedicated to the ancient rituals of winemaking, but at the same time it is a production facility that must meet specific quality standards.”
Nestled within the heart of the Antinori families ancestral lands, Antinori nel Chianti Classico is not only an important milestone for the family itself, but a solidification of the bond between land and winemaker. The winery was built completely from locally sourced materials, and it sings with Tuscan charm that attracts wine enthusiasts from all over the world.
Though many people cross their fingers to visit the winery on a sunny day, I preferred the rain that we had for the beginning of our visit. It allowed the outdoor spaces to feel cozy and warm, and the sun finally breaking through the clouds to be even more special.
Personally, I love learning more about how wines are produced – and also being able to see exactly where it’s done. The Antinori experience allows you to learn more about the history of the family and their winemaking journey over the years, but also gives you the feeling of being part of their winemaking traditions with the interactive tastings held before an impeccable meal at Rinuccio 1180.
It’s not often I’m rendered lost for words. But as it seems, every single course at Rinuccio 1180 left me speechless. Perhaps it was the wine pairing, or maybe the ambiance or the food itself – but there was an energy in the room that was palpable. Felt by every person at every table. Or at least, so it seemed.
Each course came with a detailed overview by the kind Rinuccio staff, both in English or Italian depending on your spoken language preference. Each plate was beautifully curated, from the presentation to the flavour palate – and of course, continued through the wine. It’s the perfect place to celebrate a birthday, an anniversary or other special occasion.
Winemaking That Runs in the Family
The Antinori family has a deep history in winemaking. For over six centuries, they have made innovative and bold decisions that keep the prestige of their long-standing traditions and respect the environment from which they produce their wines – whether it’s the Chianti Classico region, down in Puglia or across the rest of Italy. From when their founder, Giovanni di Piero Antinori, became a member of the Arte Fiorentina dei Vinattieri (The Florentine Winemaker’s Guild) until now – each idea that has been cultivated is a chance for a new beginning. Though the family has ancient roots, there is no holding back their forward thinking when it comes to wine.
The Latest Tignanello
I described the 2018 vintage of Tignanello as calculated, elegant and exacted, with no exaggeration, excesses or loose ends. If I thought the 2018 was good, the 2019 exceeded my already high expectations.
There’s a rumor going around that the 2019 is the best vintage for the wine that’s been made to date. But I’ve also heard that the 2020 will be even better. Tignanello is not a wine that’s made every single year. The growing conditions must be ideal, because if not, the production of this super tuscan will not take place.
Have you ever been to Antinori nel Chianti Classico before? If not, has this inspired you to go?