Rocca di Castagnoli is an organic estate in Località Castagnoli, in the eastern part of Gaiole in Chianti in the Chianti Classico DOCG region of Tuscany, Italy. As well as red wines, a sweet Vin Santo del Chianti Classico DOC is also made. (NB: Rocca di Castagnoli is not to be confused with Castagnoli, a winery in Castellina-in-Chianti).

Owner: The Calì family. Alimenta S.pA.

Staff: Direttore: Rolando Bernacchini (+39 348 0023957). | Oen: Maurizio Alongi (full-time, no external oenologist). | Exports: Walter Filiputti.

Background: The medieval hamlet, or borgo, of Castagnoli has existed since the Early Middle Ages. The first reliable documentation regarding it dates as far back as the year 900 ad and concerns the sale of a holding called Stielle, which today is one of the best known vineyards on the Rocca di Castagnoli estate. Three centuries later, in 1203, Castagnoli was incorporated into the territory of Florence and became part of the League of Chianti under the municipality of Gaiole. During those turbulent years this area, which today is an oasis of peace, was the scene of violent conflict. During the 1478-79 war, in which Aragonese troops from Naples were also involved, the Sienese army lay siege to the fortified village of Castagnoli. The stronghold resisted and later, after the fall of Siena, it became part of the Grand Duchy of Tuscany.

This was the start of a period of peace, during which a succession of illustrious families like the Piccolominis, the Tempis and the Ricasolis owned the villa and surrounding holdings and dedicated themselves heart and soul to the vineyards and wine-making. In the 1700s, under the management of the Tempi family, it became one of the most celebrated estates in the area. While visiting Chianti in 1773, Grand Duke Pietro Leopoldo praised the family’s enlightened management methods and called attention to the excellent state of the holdings and peasants’ living conditions.

Vineyards: 2020 900ha of land. Of this 72 hectares of vines in 7 diverse blocks.

Organic certification2018 First vintage with full organic certification.

White wine

Toscana Bianco IGT, Molino delle Balze: 2016 100% Chardonnay.

Red wines

Chianti Classico DOCG, Rocca di Castagnoli: 2016 90% Sangiovese, 5% Colorino and Canaiolo. Just bottled: OK, needs more clarity (Anteprima 2018). | 2018 100% Sangiovese. Bright red fruit (Anteprima 2020).

Chianti Classico DOCG Riserva, Poggio a` Frati: From calcareous marl. NE-facing. 450m. | 2014 90% Sangiovese, 5% Canaiolo. | Crunchy red fruit, textured (Anteprima 2020).

Chianti Classico DOCG Riserva, Tenuta di Capraia2014 100% Sangiovese. | 2015 100% Sangiovese.

Chianti Classico DOCG Gran Selezione, Stielle: 100% Sangiovese. 550m. Mainly galestro. | 1999 Sangiovese and Cabernet. | 2013 100% Sangiovese. | 2015 100% Sangiovese.

Toscana Rosso IGT, Buriano: 1999 Cabernet Sauvignon-based.

Toscana Rosso IGT, Le Pratole: 2000 Debut. 100% Merlot.

Vin Santo

Vin Santo del Chianti Classico DOC, Rocca di Castagnoli2011 80% Malvasia, 20% Trebbiano. | 2013 80% Malvasia, 20% Trebbiano. 14% alc. Some burnt caramel notes (Anteprima 2020).

Visits

Restaurant: Osteria al Ponte, Via A. Casabianca, 25 – Gaiole in Chianti Tel+39 0577 744007. Open daily for lunch and supper. Closed Monday. Closed in February.

Accommodation: Rooms in the medical fortress whose names commemorate the trades of the medieval workers who once lived here: Bottaio (cooper), Fornaciaio (kilns-man), Mugnaio (miller), Funaio (rope maker), Carraio (wheel right) and Fabbro (blacksmith)

Contact

Rocca di Castagnoli-Capraia

Loc. Castagnoli, I-53013 Gaiole in Chianti (SI = Siena), Italy

Tel+39 0577 731004