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Nittardi is a boutique winery situated in the heart of the Chianti Classico region, with vineyards in Chianti Classico and the Maremma. The Nittardi Estate, on the boundary between the provinces of Siena and Florence, was originally a defensive tower known as early as 1183 by the name of “Nectar Dei” (The Nectar of the God). In the 16th century, the vast property belonged to the Renaissance artist Michelangelo Buonarroti who, in 1549, while painting the Sistine Chapel, wrote to his nephew Lionardo: “I’d prefer two casks of wine rather than eight shirts.” On that same occasion, Michelangelo also sent Nittardi wine to Rome as a “genuine gift to the Pope Julius II”. Today, in honour of that tradition, every year the first bottles of Nectar Dei, the top wine from the Maremma vineyards, are presented to the Pope.


Over the centuries the property changed hands often until, in 1982, it was taken over by the Frankfurt publisher and art gallerist Peter Femfert and his wife Stefania Canali, a historian from Venice. Stefania and Peter restored Nittardi step-by-step and with love and care. The vineyards were replanted and, in 1992, the ancient vat room was replaced by a modern cellar. A competent team of wine enthusiasts was put together, consisting of Carlo Ferrini, the consultant enologist; Antonio Spurio, the technical director; and Giorgio Conte, the commercial director. The son of Stefania and Peter, Léon Femfert,has been involved full time at the winery since early 2013.


Another splendid property was purchased in the Maremma, close to the coast in southern Tuscany, in 1999. Since then, 17 hectares there have been planted with local and international grape varietals. This is where Ad Astra and Nectar Dei, the Super Tuscans of Nittardi, are produced. In 2012, the Maremma also became the birthplace of Nittardi’s first white wine: BEN, a 100% Vermentino.


As homage to Michelangelo, the unique combination of art and wine is still cultivated today at Nittardi. Every year a well-known artist paints the label as well as the wrapping paper used for the Casanuova di Nittardi Vigna Doghessa wine bottles. The collection, started in 1981, includes works by internationally renowned artists such as Hundertwasser, Corneille, A.R. Penck, Mitoraj, Yoko Ono, Günter Grass, Dario Fo and Karl Otto Götz.


A year does not go by in which the wines of Nittardi do not win an important award or rating, including Three Glasses from Gambero Rosso, Five Bottles from Vini d’Italia, 5 Stars from Decanter, and 90+ (max. 94) points from Wine Spectator. The Wine Enthusiast, Wine Advocate and James Suckling have all likewise given Nittardi the highest praise.

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The vineyards of Nittardi represent the heart of the estate. Our vineyards produce outstanding fruit year after year thanks to an interesting soil mix of slate and schist combined with a mesoclimate with extreme day-to-night temperature differences. In total, at the Nittardi estate itself, we have five different plots of 9 hectares each. The youngest vineyard (Doghessa) is planted at the high density of 6,667 plants per hectare, while the other vineyards have a per-hectare density of 5,500 plants. All the vineyards are cordon-pruned and the average production is less than one kilogram per plant, or between 35 and 45 hl per hectare.


Grape varieties: We have two different grape varieties in the vineyards surrounding Nittardi: Sangiovese (six different clones, so as to get a variety of different expressions from the same terroir) and a tiny bit of Merlot (three different clones).


Soils: The different parcels have the same limestone-clay mix in common. At the same time, the soil of the vineyards has a rich skeleton of shingle and stones, in particular Galestro, a type of schist that is typical of the Chianti Classico area. The less steep vineyards have a deeper soil that is less rich in texture. These different soil types, combined with the region's interesting mesoclimate, are an excellent terroir for Sangiovese!


Climate: The climate at Nittardi can be defined as continental, with low temperatures during the winter, often under zero degrees, and warm and dry summers, with daily temperatures above 30 degrees. The extreme variances in the day-to-night temperatures, due to the high altitudes varying between 400 and 500 meters as well the southern exposure, are noteworthy and influential. The yearly rainfall, around 800 millimeters, is concentrated between late autumn and spring. These climatic characteristics guaranty a slow and balanced maturation of the grapes: the starting point of elegant and complex wines. 


Agricultural practices: All our vineyards are certified organic and managed with the highest respect for the environment. Fertilization of the soil is carried out only with organic substances, such as manure and green manure (seeding, growth, chopping and burial of leguminous plants such as field beans). Throughout the year, our skilled workers conduct all operations in the vineyards manually. To ensure a better quality grape, we keep the amount of grapes produced low through a variety of agricultural methods, such as short-pruning in winter, a careful selection of the shoots in spring, and green harvesting in early summer. The harvest, of only the ripest and healthiest grapes, is done manually.


Harvest: The first variety to be harvested is normally the Merlot, in early September, while we harvest the Sangiovese grapes at the end of September and beginning of October.

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The cellar – built in the middle of the nineties – is a modern structure that respects the classical architecture of the region. The cellar was developed with the aim of handling the grapes with the utmost respect and in the gentlest way possible. Great respect is given to the different maturation periods of the different parcels and varieties, and all the grapes are harvested by hand using 20 kg cases. After a careful selection of the grapes, fermentation starts in our stainless steel tanks with a maximum capacity of 105 hl. During fermentation, to preserve the typical aromatics of the different grape varieties the temperature is controlled and never exceeds 28° C. Punch downs, rémontage and délestage are done regularly throughout fermentation.


After the malolactic fermentation, the wines are transferred into French oak barrels, barriques (225 l) and tonneaux (500 l), for ageing. The type of barrel and length of the ageing (between 9-24 months) depends on the grape variety and wine. Together with our consultant winemaker Carlo Ferrini we decide when and how to blend the different parcels and grape varieties to create our fine wines. Once the different wines are bottled, the ageing continues in the bottles in our climate-controlled warehouse. The length of bottle aging depends on the wine.

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Wine Moments

Here you can see wine moments from tastingbook users.    or    to see wine moments from your world.

 Luca Gardini, Wine Writer (Italy)  tasted  1 wines  from  Nittardi . In a tasting of  14 wines 

Baldéro Chianti Classico 2017, with the contribution of Merlot, shows an intense and velvety nose recalling blackberry and blueberry, scents of fresh pepper leaf. Juicy and fresh mouthfeel with a good texture. Convincing persistence.

1m 7d ago

 Julia Harding MW, Wine Writer (United Kingdom)  tasted  3 wines  from  Nittardi . In a tasting of  16 wines 

Cullen Diana Madeline 2019 / Deep dark red. Elegant aroma which is marked by cassis and a light leafiness and a suggestion of Cabernet Franc's characteristic blackcurrant-leaf quality. Dry, refined tannins giving a dry mineral character. Plush and full in the mouth, the mineral character as much in the tannins as in flavour. ‘Toast to mum’, says Vanya Cullen. Smoky but not reductive. Layers of paper-fine tannins. Elegant. Opens up to a slight note of curry leaf. Or is it tobacco, or both? Very, very dry without being drying. Ultimate in refinement. 

1m 24d ago

 Julia Harding MW, Wine Writer (United Kingdom)  tasted  1 wines  from  Nittardi . In a tasting of  25 wines 

Alpha Vineyard Chardonnay 2015 Toumpa Vineyard /Toumpa means ‘lower-altitude basin’, like a location in a valley. 1.3-ha vineyard at 620-710 m. Sandy-clay soil over limestone. Hand harvested. Skin contact under inert atmosphere at low temperature. Controlled alcoholic fermentation in fine grain, untoasted Bertranges and Jupille oak barriques with regular stirring on fine lees. Maximum 7 months following vinification in the same oak casks. TA 5.7 g/l, pH 3.51, RS 1.6 g/l.
Unexpectedly peachy on the nose, with citrus freshness too but the oak is hardly visible except in a delicate creamy spice. More creamy on the palate but I have to say this is masterful use of oak and lees, giving a gentle creamy quality rather than a heavy oak flavour. Gentle and fresh, elegant and persistent. I am not sure it has the concentration for long ageing but there is no hurry to drink this. (JH)

1y 8m ago

 Steven Spurrier, Wine Writer (United Kingdom)  tasted  5 wines  from  Nittardi . In a tasting of  24 wines 

Château Margaux 2009 / (87% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% merlot, 2% Cabernet Franc, 2% Petit Verdot) Fine black red, quite magical bouquet, pure quality of cashmere silkiness on the palate with a touch of fragrance from Cabernet Franc, blending softness of attack with pure density. A wine of stunning fragrance and purity, the most perfect expression imaginable of the greatest of Margaux vineyards. Drink 2019-40. 20p

1y 11m ago

 Nittardi  has updated producer and wine information

3y 4m ago

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