Anthony Gismondi on Wine
Saturday, December 8 2018

An Italian Adventure: Super Tuscany

By: Anthony Gismondi
Luce Della Vite is Montalcino's brightest light.

Each week, until mid-December, we are releasing a short film in which we take a closer look at an Italian wine region, filming it through the eyes of the people who are making the wines.

In this episode, we visit the Luce della Vite estate and catch up with Stefano Ruini, the new technical director of the renowned estate owned by the celebrated Tuscan Frescobaldi family.

Ruini sees himself as more of a midwife than winemaker, allowing the property to tell its story through its wine. Ruini and the new winery signal a rebirth at Luce, first founded back in 1995 as a partnership and a collaboration between the Frescobaldi family (Lamberto) and the Napa Valley Mondavi family (Tim). The goal was to create a super Tuscan blend of sangiovese and merlot, that eventually spawned Luce, Lucente and finally, in 2003, the first Brunello di Montalcino.

When the Mondavis sold the family business in 2004 the Frescobaldi’s took back control of Luce della Vite and carried on production at nearby Castelgiocondo whose vineyards border the Luce vineyards. In 2017, Lamberto Frescobaldi made the decision to give Luce a new home and new direction. Ruini arrived in the middle of the transaction that saw Frescobaldi purchase his neighbour’s recently built winery structure (mostly underground) and was given carte blanche to reach for the stars. We met him in the middle of his constellation and went for a tour.

Watch the rest of the Bolzano to Bari: An Italian Adventure Series.

Further study: Tenuta Luce della Vite

Written By: ag
Anthony Gismondi
Anthony Gismondi

Anthony Gismondi is a Canadian wine journalist and one of North America's most influential voices in wine. He is currently in his 29th year as the wine columnist at the Vancouver Sun and a Partner and Principal Critic at www.winealign.comAnthony is also the co-host of the longest running, weekly, wine and food show in Canadian radio: The Best of Food and Wine. You can listen to the show across the Best of Food and Wine Radio Network multiple times per week. For air times in your city, or to listen live on the internet, check here.