Italy Montepulciano und Maremma Tuscany

Fifty years ago, Dino Carletti, the father of the current owner, Federico Carletti, certainly never imagined that his winery near the beautiful Renaissance town of Montepulciano in Tuscany would one day be one of the finest Vino Nobile estates.

In 1961, he purchased a small property replete with 22 hectares of vineyards nestled in a bucolic landscape just northeast of the old hilltop fortress, which had always been admired by poets. So why not name the estate after the famous Florentine scholar, Angelo Ambrogini, commonly known by his nickname Poliziano, who was born in Montepulciano in 1454?

Until his studies in agronomy, Federico Carletti had no particular contact with the world of wines, but this changed rapidly after he moved to Florence and met the now famous oenologists Carlo Ferrini and Maurizio Castelli.

The 1980s were difficult years for the wines of Montepulciano, in particular for its flagship Vino Nobile. Their image and prices were trailing behind those of Chianti Classico and Brunello di Montalcino was already on the rise. Dino and his son Federico nonetheless remained optimistic and invested both time and money in their vineyards and cellar.

Today, Federico Carletti owns 120 hectares of vineyards in Montepulciano and another thirty in Scansano in the Maremma near the Tuscan coast. In the oldest sites, which were planted between 1962 and 1980, nothing other than Prugnolo Gentile, the local clone of Sangiovese, is found.

Together with his oenologist Maurizio Castelli, Federico Carletti has slowly succeeded in establishing his standard Vino Nobile at the same price level as the most well-known Chianti Classico. Moreover, in the excellent vintages, he also produces a second Vino Nobile from a single vineyard plot called Asinone, which has become a benchmark for the region. Made from 95% Prugnolo Gentile with a smattering of Merlot, Colorino and Canaiolo, it matures for some eighteen months in French oak barrels before bottling.

Montepulciano und Maremma Tuscany, Italy