Celebrating “Siepi” A Tuscan Wine Rich in History and Heart

Monique Soltani, Francesco Mazzei
Monique Soltani, Francesco Mazzei

Wine lovers of the world rejoice, we have found a perfect wine! Oh, and guess what it’s been around for like two decades! On May 5, I was invited to a vertical tasting of Castello di Fonterutoli “Siepi,” a Tuscan blend made by the Mazzei family. Siepi’s history goes back roughly 600 years and it’s one of Tuscany’s oldest sites. This one of a kind wine is made with Sangiovese and Merlot grapes from the historic Siepi cru in the heart of Chianti Classico.

The video above was shot with my iPhone at the tasting so it’s not super fancy. But, you DO get to hear the ever charming Francesco Mazzei, chat about his family’s wine dynasty and his quest to make a perfect wine. Now, if the name Mazzei sounds familiar to you it should! I interviewed him when I toured his estate in Tuscany in 2013.

Here’s the video ICYMI: Traveling in Tuscany: Wine Tasting & Tours:

“With Siepi I had a dream to make the perfect wine.”- Francesco Mazzei

“Wine is a moody as we are!”- Francesco Mazzei

Why was I reunited with the dashing Mr. Mazzei? Siepi’s first harvest dates back to 1992 with this year’s release of the 2012 vintage marking the twentieth anniversary of this celebrated Tuscan blend. The wines we tasted at Sociale in San Francisco: Mazzei Castello di Fonterutoli ‘Siepi’ 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2011 and the newly-released 2012. In addition to celebrating Siepi we tasted the Belguardo Rosé, Castello di Fonterutoli: Chianti Classico Gran Selezione, Mix 36 (a blend of 36 different biotypes of Sangiovese), and Philip Cabernet Sauvignon.

Francesco Mazzei

“The concept behind Siepi was to make an ideal and perfect wine. Thanks to the longstanding quality of the Sangiovese and Merlot grown here and the varieties’ complementary characteristics, I can proudly say I believe we are close to it. We have produced a special limited edition of bottles for collectors to celebrate Siepi’s 20th anniversary.

This outstanding wine is a testament to our enduring bond with the vineyard, encouraging us to look towards the future with the courage and confidence of a family who has been caring for the land with love and respect for centuries.”

A Wine Dynasty

Family that Fathered Chianti Gives Birth to a Blessed Tuscan Wine The history of the Mazzei family is closely woven in Tuscany’s winemaking tradition; Marchesi Mazzei is one of the ten oldest family businesses in Italy, one of the most acclaimed names in Italian wine, and a renowned producer of Chianti Classico. The extraordinary Fonterutoli Estate in Chianti Classico, in the hands of the Mazzei family since 1435, has passed down through 24 generations.

The continuous search for new challenges and the unwavering quest for excellence have pushed the family to expand its horizons toward new viticultural and winemaking frontiers, beyond Chianti Classico, into the Tuscan coastal zone of Maremma (Belguardo Estate), and to Sicily (Zisola Estate).

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