top of page

Top 10 Tuscan wines, What they are, Grapes, Qualities and Characteristics you should know about

Tuscany is undoubtedly one of the wine regions par excellence: the mineral-rich soil collaborates with a mild climate to offer better and higher-quality wines every year. The Chianti hills are renowned here, with the entire area of Mugello, Val di Chiana, and Val d'Orcia, the cradle of the inimitable Brunello di Montalcino. This article reveals the ten most famous and appreciated wines of the Tuscany region.

Tuscany vines
Tuscany vines

List of the leading Tuscan wines

Brunello di Montalcino DOCG

Brunello di Montalcino is an intense ruby ​​red wine.

Visually, it is clear and brilliant, with a lively garnet colour. It has an intense, persistent, broad, and ethereal aroma. It is appreciated for its hints of black cherries and berries, with tertiary notes of spices and vanilla due to ageing in wooden barrels.

Brunello di Montalcino comes from grapes grown in the Sangiovese territories and owes its name to the vine that has historically retained the name of Brunello. The territory is that of the Sienese hills, and the placing on the market takes place, as per tradition, on January 1st of the fifth year after the harvest. In this long period, Brunello spends at least two years in barrels, rigorously made of oak wood, before moving on to the bottle and completing its level of refinement.

Brunello di Montalcino, therefore, represents the idea of a clear and lively wine, brilliant in colour and intense in aroma. It offers the palate a broad and persistent flavour, which continues to satisfy the palates of experts and connoisseurs.

In 1960, Brunello di Montalcino was the first wine awarded the DOC and achieved the DOCG in 1980. Its origin dates back to the second half of the 19th century when Ferruccio Santi di Montalcino selected and began to vinify grapes of a variety of Sangiovese known locally as " Brunello " due to their dark colour.

The maximum grape yield is 80 quintals per hectare, while the percentage established by the production specification is 68% for the wine yield. It is also permitted to specify on the label which area of the territory in particular ("Vigna", for example) the grapes used for winemaking come from.

Brunello di Montalcino DOCG

Requires five years from the moment of harvest ageing in wooden barrels before being put on the market (which becomes six for the " reserve " version), of which at least two years in oak barrels, and for a period of no less than another four months in the bottle (six months for the reserve ).

Brunello di Montalcino is a wine of great longevity and requires long refinement before reaching the top of its quality level. Examples of Brunelli aged for periods ranging from 10 to 30 years and more are available.

Brunello di Montalcino DOCG Caracteristics

  • Production area: Historical border of the Municipality of Montalcino Sangiovese.

  • Grape variety: (called, in Montalcino, "Brunello")

  • Maximum grape yield: 80 quintals per hectare

  • Grape yield in wine: 68%

  • Minimum ageing in wood: 2 years in oak

  • Minimum ageing in bottle: 4 months (6 months for the Riserva type) Intense ruby ​​red

  • Colour: Tending towards garnet due to ageing

  • Odor: Characteristic and intense

  • Perfume: Dry, warm, slightly tannic, robust and harmonious flavour

  • Minimum alcohol content: 12.5% ​​Vol.

  • Minimum total acidity: 5g/lt

  • Minimum net dry extract: 26 g/lt

  • Bottling: Can only be carried out in the production area

  • Release for consumption: Cannot be released for consumption before 1 January of the year following the end of five years calculated considering the harvest year (6 years for the Riserva type)

  • Packaging: Brunello di Montalcino can only be marketed if packaged in Bordeaux-shaped bottles.

It should be served at room temperature (around 18-22°C) in large glasses with ample light, which allows the perception of its complex and articulated bouquet. In the case of vintage wines, it is preferable first to decant and decant them so that they can adequately re-oxygenate while at the same time getting rid of the deposit on the bottom.

Brunello di Montalcino was recognized as a CONTROLLED AND GUARANTEED DESIGNATION OF ORIGIN with Presidential Decree 1/7/1980. Subsequently, various changes were made. Below are the rules established by the current regulations as provided for by the Decree 19/5/1998.

Chianti Classico DOCG and Chianti DOCG

Chianti is undoubtedly an Italian and, even more so, a Tuscan wine icon. In the nineteenth century, Count Bettino Ricasoli defined the areas, vines, and winemaking techniques for this centuries-old traditional wine.

View of the Chianti Valley
View of the Chianti Valley

But the origin of this wine is even older. Chianti was one of the first wine-growing areas to be regulated and defined by a law issued on 24 September 1716 by Grand Duke Cosimo III de' Medici, which initially defined the boundaries of the Chianti, Pomino, Carmignano, and Val d'Arno regions.

The traditional straw flask, famous worldwide and a symbol of popular wine thanks to the many movies featuring it, has represented the Italian nature of this product for years. Still, Chianti wine was long considered a second-class wine.

Things have fortunately changed, and today, Chianti, expressed in its various denominations (Chianti Classico DOCG and Chianti DOCG with its seven sub-areas), represents an example of the rebirth of Italian oenology from both a qualitative and recognition point of view.

In the past, the Chianti area coincided with the territory of the municipalities of Gaiole, Radda, and Castellina in Chianti, Siena's province, which constituted the so-called Province of Chianti.

These three localities still represent the nucleus of Historic Chianti; however, the area defined as "Chianti Classico" is much larger and involves other localities in the provinces of Florence and Siena.

The area, included in the Chianti DOCG denomination, also consists of the provinces of Pisa and Arezzo and a much larger and more complex territory, as demonstrated by its seven sub-areas.

What is Chianti made of?

The wines are produced with 70% Sangiovese grape variety, with a maximum of 15% Cabernet and 10% local white grape varieties, respecting the tradition defined by Count Ricasoli.

Therefore, the reference grape variety is Sangiovese, with its structure, tannicity, freshness, and ability to refine best in wooden barrels. The pairings are all traditional Tuscan dishes, from vegetable-based soups (Ribollita) to grilled and baked red meats. The “ reserve” versions express the best structure and aromas and can be combined with the feathered and furred game (baked wild boar).

Let's look at the main characteristics of Chianti Wine, including colour, types, vines, and production regions of the Chianti wines in Italy.





Grape varieties:

70% Sangiovese, 15% Cabernet and a max of 10% of other black grape varieties



Typical tasting notes include red fruits, dried herbs, balsamic vinegar, smoke, and game. On the high end, wines offer notes of preserved sour cherries, dried oregano, balsamic reduction, dry salami, espresso, and sweet tobacco.


Il Vino Nobile di Montepulciano

Vernaccia di San Gimignano

Vin Santo del Chianti Classico

Bolgheri Sassicaia

Colli di Luni Vermentino

Maremma Toscana Rosso

Montecucco Rosso

3 views0 comments


Rated 0 out of 5 stars.
No ratings yet

Add a rating
bottom of page