Nestled in the shadow of the Amiata mountains, in the beautiful and world-beating wine region of Tuscany, Italy, we find the Caparzo winery, run by winemaker Elisabetta Gnudi Angelini alongside her son and daughter. Tuscany has always had a special place in the heart of the world’s wine drinkers, and its dedication to tradition alongside a boldness and newfound willingness to innovate has resulted in many wonderful wines. Tuscany is mostly famed for its drinkable, medium-bodied red wines - perfect for sipping in the sunshine and for pairing with the homely, meaty dishes for which the region is famed. Caparzo fits this description pretty well, and the winery has become highly renowned for its single estate Brunello di Montalcino wines. Indeed, Caparzo is the only winery in the region to own high quality, heritage vineyards on all five sides of the large hill in Montalcino. Why is this significant? For the very good reason that no matter what climatic conditions or oddities hit on side the hill, the other sides will surely compensate, resulting in reliably delicious, well crafted wines made from the finest Sangiovese varietal grapes.
The winery itself is a fantastic example of what makes this part of Italy so special. The name - Caparzo - is a link to the ancient landscape of Tuscany. On the oldest maps of the region, you’ll find the words “Ca’ Pazzo”, the meaning of which has been lost in time. Some claim it is a derivation of the Latin “Caput Arsum”, which means “touched by the sun” - a fitting explanation - but nobody really knows. Despite having a name taken from antiquity, the Gnudi family aren’t bound by tradition, and are willing to use modern techniques and methods picked up from around the world to ensure they get the very best from their Sangiovese grapes.
Theirs is a winery that, in its thirty years or so of operations, has helped bring a highly traditional region into the twenty-first century, while maintaining everything that is special and magical about the location. The result is a fabulous example of what Tuscan red wine can and should be, made with love and care, and expressing all the richness and reverence the land provides.