Sipping Through Florence: Explore the Region’s Vineyards
Unwind with the Finest Wines and Most Beautiful Views
· 5 min read
Florence, Italy is not just a city of art and culture, it is also home to some of the best vineyards in Tuscany. With rolling hills, stunning countryside views, and exceptional wines, exploring Florence’s vineyards is a must-do for any wine lover. In this guide, we’ll cover some of the best vineyards to visit and tips for making the most of your vineyard adventure.
Which Vineyards to Visit?
Florence has many wonderful vineyards to choose from, each offering its own unique wine and atmosphere. Here are some of our top recommendations:
Castello di Nipozzano: Beautiful Views and Exclusive Experiences
Nestled amongst the vineyards and hills of Chianti Rufina, 50 minutes away from Florence, the Castello Nipozzano is the one of the first wine estates owned by the the Frescobaldi family, a major wine producer in Italy. The first documentation about the renowned wines of Nipozzano dates as far back as the Renaissance, when great artists such as Donatello and Michelozzo Michelozzi regularly purchased wine from the estate. The winery is best for their Sangiovese, but is also known for its early plantings of non-regional varieties. Characterized by the 11th-Century castle that now houses the winery's cellar and barrel room, the beautiful castle promises stunning views of the vineyards and hills that stretch all the way to the Arno river valley.
The tours at Castello Nipozzano can be customised to your needs, ensuring that you have a very unique and exclusive experience. Not only do they offer tours of the winery, you can also choose to spend a night in one of the 4 rooms in the castle! But be sure to make your reservations ahead of time!
🗺️ Address: Località Nipozzano, 50060 Nipozzano FI, Italy
Antinori nel Chianti Classico: Most Prestigious
Just a thirty minute drive away from Florence, this renowned winery is one of the oldest and most prestigious in Tuscany, with a history dating back more than 600 years. In fact, it was awarded the first place in the World’s Best Vineyards in 2022. The vineyard’s most typical grape is the Sangiovese, and includes varieties such as the Canaiolo, Ciligiolo, and Mammolo. Aside from the vast vineyards, you can also marvel at the innovative architecture at the Antinori nel Chianti Classico, that was designed to have a low environmental impact and maximum energy savings.
Depending on how much time you have, or what you are interested in, the winery has 3 different tours that you could choose from. If you would like something more customised, they also offer experiences tailored to your needs. You should make your reservations in advance!
Castello del Trebbio: Wines with Rich Flavours; Variety of Activities
This vineyard, located in the Chianti Rufina region, is set in a stunning castle dating back to the 12th century. Today, the estate is run by the Baj Macario family, a family passionate about great wine and ethical agriculture. Their production is characterized by the use of Biointegrale practices that favours biodiversity and maintains the vitality of the environment. They also combine ancient techniques like the use of terracotta amphora in their winemaking process, giving the wine a rich flavour.
In addition to the various tours, Castello del Trebbio also offers cooking classes! And in the second half of the year during the harvest season, you will be able to experience olive harvesting (November to early December) or grape harvesting (end August to early October)! Most of these tours require a minimum number of participants, and you will need to book in advance.
For those interested to spend a couple of days at the vineyard, you can also rent a villa or apartment.
🌐 Website: https://www.castellodeltrebbio.com/
Podere Ema: Uses only local grapes
Podere Ema was founded by the passion and love for Tuscan wines. And to emphasise on this, the wines here are produced only local grapes. While most of the wineries in the region specialise in Sangiovese, Podere Ema also has a strong focus on Foglia Tonda, a Tuscan variety that was abandoned and replaced by ‘easier’ varieties, and only rediscovered in the 1970s.
While not as well-known as the other wineries on this list, visitors to this winery rave highly about the quality of the drinks and the hospitality received. You can request for a tasting session at Podere Ema via their website.
🌐 Website: https://podereema.it/en/
Castello di Verrazzano: Popular with Tourists
The Castle of Verrazzano is located in Greve in Chianti, in the heart of the Chianti Classico area, a 40 minute drive away from Florence. It is one of the more popular destinations for tourists looking to visit vineyards in the region. The estate of 230 acres has been around for over 1,000 years, and has over 50 hectares of vineyards, which has mostly red grapes. In particular, the Sangiovese clearly stands out.
They offer various packages of guided tours, inclusive of lunch and dinner packages — all of which you should book in advance! It is also possible to stay overnight at the “Foresteria Casanova “, recently restored and completely immersed in the vineyards of the Castle.
🌐 Website: http://www.verrazzano.com/
How to visit a Vineyard?
There are many travel agencies that offer guided tours to vineyards. But if there is a specific vineyard that you would like to visit, these agencies might not always offer tours to those vineyards.
If you are planning to visit a vineyard yourself (without joining a day tour), the best way to do so would be to drive. But if you don’t drive, there are usually also public transportation options that you could use to get to the vineyards — though you might have to walk a distance.
⚠️⚠️⚠️ Don’t drink and drive! If you will be driving, be very mindful about how much you drink at the vineyard.
Here are some practical tips to keep in mind when planning your vineyard adventure:
- Most vineyards require advance booking, so be sure to check their website or call ahead to make a reservation.
- Most vineyards have a restaurant. For the full culinary and winery experience, consider having lunch or dinner at the restaurant there, as the food will complement the wine that is available.
- Dress comfortably and appropriately for the weather, as many vineyards have outdoor seating areas.
- Remember to bring sunscreen, a hat, and sunglasses to protect yourself from the sun.
- Respect the environment by following the rules of the vineyard and avoiding any damage to the crops.
- Don’t be shy to ask questions! Take advantage of the opportunity to learn from the experts at the vineyard, who can provide valuable insights into the local wine culture and share their knowledge about the winemaking process.