The Antinori family has been producing wine in Tuscany since 1385. Gracefully capitalizing on his family’s story, winemaker Antinori chronicles the unique business and personal relationships of this remarkable family enterprise.
The author uses seven wines as the foundation for his narrative, pairing each with a topic related to the family business. Beginning with a Franciacorta Brut rosé, Antinori explains how this wine represents his three daughters and their role in creating the future and “modern international soul of Marchesi Antinori.” The author explores becoming a winemaker (Villa Antinori); growing a company style (Solaia); reinventing wine (Tignanello); the regions of Umbria and Tuscany (Cervaro Della Sala); making wines in the world (Antica Napa Valley); and opening a winery (Mezzo Braccio Monteloro). Throughout the book, Antinori stresses that family relationships are the basis of the company’s enduring success and style. “The legacy and continuity that we are selling,” he writes, “my signature on the label, our roots: these things mean that even when times are tough, I wouldn’t dream of letting the company out of our control.” The author began exploring California and its wines in 1966 when he visited Napa, and his company’s first California wine, a cabernet sauvignon, was harvested in 2004. Today, the company “owns 1,742 hectares planted with vineyards in Italy, and 2,358 hectares around the world,” including Kyrgyzstan. The author’s impressive business success and personal life, combined with the compelling world of wine production, provides plenty of delectable fodder for readers. Whether Antinori is explaining the wine crisis of the 1960s or defining the Tuscan way of doing things or how his family roots infused him with a love of travel, the result is a pleasure. Oenophiles and those just curious for a bit more information will appreciate the technical notes about each of the seven bottles.
A delightful celebration of an extraordinary Italian family’s enduring love affair with wine.