Santa 10 

Siena, Italy

Santa10 is one of our most recent finds: Gianni Massone’s 8.5 hectare family farm situated on the first hilltop south-east of Siena. There is a medieval watchtower, ancient underground vaults – where Gianni makes the wine  – vines, an olive grove and a vegetable garden.

The estate is quarried from, and built on, the indigenous yellow tuffa stone. A major symbol of local identity, tuffa is laid down each year for the Palio in the Piazza del Campo, and under the hooves of the horses, has been trodden deep into the Sienese psyche over centuries. For Gianni, winemaking is about expressing the qualities of this stone, and refining vineyard and cellar work to best allow it to speak through the wine.

The vineyard was replanted in 2000, with largely Ciliegiolo, Canaiolo, Trebbiano, and Sangiovese. Gianni’s first vintage was in 2007, and today production remains at a modest 8,000 bottles a year. He farms organically, and in the cellar the work is pretty much entirely manual: indigenous yeast fermentation, without temperature control, fining or filtration. Ageing happens in the vaults under the tower.