Fattoria di Valiano, in Chianti Classico, has an unrivaled pedigree. Under the care of fifth generation-run Piccini family, a commitment to organic farming fuels every aspect of their winemaking, from the vineyard to the cellar and beyond. Their philosophy, which honors this connection between the fruit from the vine and the bond with the land, can be summed up as “A Vine, A Territory.” Certified organic beginning with the 2018 vintage, the estate honors this achievement with a new look.
In the 1960s, the Valiano estate, located in the village of Castelnuovo Berardenga, was owned by Giovanni Gronchi, the former Italian president. Gronchi knew there was something special about the land, and its current owner, Mario Piccini, also knew this, even having dreamt about owning the property one day as a young boy. As a member of the Piccini family—who have been cultivating vines in Chianti Classico since 1882—winemaking was in his blood, and he knew he could produce great wines from this vineyard. His dream eventually came to fruition and the Fattoria di Valiano estate now serves as the heart of the wine company, which encompasses five estates throughout Italy.
In total, the property encompasses 568 organically farmed acres of which 185 acres are under vine. The southwestly exposure of the vineyards mean grapes can fully ripen thanks to the warming afternoon sun, but their location at approximately 1,148 feet above sea level, with its cooling breezes, allows for slow and even development. Clay and stone comprise the majority of the soils, but the singular Poggio Teo Cru, with its old vine Sangiovese, is mainly sand and stone.
Director Pasquale Presutto oversees all aspects of winemaking, from the vineyard to the cellar. Throughout his tenure, he has brought new ideas and innovations to Valiano. A study of the soils and terroir resulted in a mapping of parcels, and the estate now farms each site according to its own needs. Experiments in the cellar also lead to expressive wines.
A Commitment to Sustainability
Given how unique the land is, the Piccini family knew they needed to do everything possible to preserve it for generations to come. In 2018, Valiano became certified organic under the Equalitas certification. They eschew the use of herbicides and pesticides, only utilize natural fertilizers,and plant cover crops to enhance nutrients in the soils, among other practices. They continually research new and innovative methods, such as using antagonistic insects to combat parasites, in their quest to farm organically.
But more than just being environmentally focused, the Equalitas certification equally weighs the societal and economic impacts of a winery’s practices. Valiano believes this holistic view of sustainability mirrors their own beliefs about their responsibilities to the community at large.
A New Look For a Classic
All of this dedication can be tasted in the newly released 2019 Fattoria di Valiano Chianti Classico. Grapes are hand harvested to ensure only the best fruit goes into the wine. After harvest, the wine is aged for nine months in oak. Made predominately from Sangiovese, with just a touch of Merlot, elegant cherry and red berry flavors and aromas meet hints of wild violets in this complex yet approachable red wine.
To honor the achievement of becoming certified organic, all of Valiano’s wines will now carry the certification seal on the bottle. And to acknowledge this new chapter in the estate’s history, a redesigned label gives a fresh look to this classic estate.
To learn more about Fattoria di Valiano and its certified organic wines, click here.