The Excellence Of Wine With Techniques Of The Past
It is one of the oldest and most prestigious estates in the whole of the Chianti Senese. From its vineyards hail some of the best wines in Tuscany, made using techniques that draw inspiration from old wine-making traditions.
Positioned between Siena and the hamlet of Vagliagli (CastelnuovoBerardenga), you come across the Dievole estate, the old property that boasts one thousand years of wine-making: the earliest written document stating its existence actually dates back to 1090.
Here past and present mix constantly in the techniques and day-to-day work, creating products of exceptional quality that are esteemed and appreciated all over the world. To understand the secret of this tangible success, you need to cast your mind back to the native vine-dressers of Dievole and the people who founded the vines.
This was the starting point for the current owners of the estate, the Schwenn family, proprietors since 1979, who decided to retrace the past, bringing the wine closer to the heavens and having the courage to take a risk.
All the evaluations, from selecting the founders and clones to creating the wine-making route and the innovations made in the vineyards and cellars, are determined by a single purpose: to produce a wine with first-rate qualities and character.
The estate produces a selection of first-class Sangiovese: the Dieulele, as well as another five superb labels (Novecento, Vendemmia, Broccato, Rosè and Bianco), which form the Oro range, synonymous of exceptional quality. Vinsanto, oil and grappa are also produced alongside these wines. Product distribution mainly relies on Italian and foreign restaurateurs.
The entire estate covers 400 hectares of land, 82 of which are cultivated with vines. It originally started life as a piece of real estate, but later became a wine and oil producer after having changed ownership several times.
2001 marked an important step forward on the road to excellence.
Dievole signed an agreement with the University of Siena for 20 vintages, which involves the recovery of six hectares of vineyard belonging to Certosa di Pontignano, a wonderful medieval residence owned by the Tuscan university. "A commitment to life and not only money," was how this agreement was defined following the signing of the convention.
Here the splendour and production techniques of more than six centuries are revived, dating back to when the Benedictine friars lived and worked within the walls, in the cloisters and on the land. Approximately 6,000 bottles are produced every year from the Certosa vineyards.
One part of the land, on the other hand, was devoted to the production of oil, also respecting tradition.
Thanks to the work of a team of experts from the university, the historical origin of the local vine was reconstructed by hunting down some ancient books containing the first-hand accounts of the monks. As we mentioned, the outcome was surprising.
A unique wine was born, completely different to the local standard and probably similar to what was produced in centuries past.
Dievole took on the responsibility of sales, whereas the university uses a part of the wine that is produced for its promotional activities. No less important for the Chianti estate is the farmhouse accommodation that it offers.
Guests find total relaxation here, embraced by the rural nature of these lands and sipping, from time to time, the local wine. It's like plunging back into the past, contained in a glass of fine red wine.