We enjoyed everything here! Our host, Fabrizio, treated us like royalty. He took us through a overview of the land, then through the cellars, explaining the process from growing the grapes to making the wines in excellent and understandable English. When we arrived in the Villa (the main house) for lunch, we expected something passable but not extravagant.
We feasted on a four course lunch with wine paired for each course. We learned about each wine and why it made sense for the particular course. The meat course was a chicken cutlet cooked in their Vinsanto (a port-like wine produced at the winery) which was heaven on my palate.
No one fretted when we lingered over the luncheon banquet in the elegant, formal dining room. I don't know whether it might be more crowded and less intimate on season, but Fabrizio tells us that the winery does NOT cater to bus tours which spoil by their very numbers the intimacy of the day and meal.
Castello di Monterinaldi is in the midst of renovating its store and tasting area to make it more accommodating for customers. We heard all about the plans and saw the care with which the carpenters were sanding mouldings to make the entire area perfect. That little glimpse into the direction of the winery's management says a lot about why this is a first class place to visit.
By the way, the wines were fantastic. Be sure to try their Gotto di Gottifredo which is a Sangiovese wine made from grapes grown on young vines. Its light body made it a perfect red for an antipasti of meat and cheeses accented by the earthy flavors of Monterinaldi's olive oil.
This rates as a must do winery.
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