Young winemakers Riccardo and Jennifer Campinoti purchased the 42 acres of vines high above Montalcino a few years back, a lauded region ruled by old-school winemakers. What they did with it is create wines that breathe fresh air into the hallowed Montalcino wine scene while still managing to pay homage to the history and weave in stories of those who came before them into each wine.
For example, outside viticulture, the area is well regarded for birdcatching. Thanks to its location high above the mountains, flocks would fly up one side of the hillside, hang out at the top, then fly on down the other side. Local birdcatchers would wait quietly with a massive net, capturing the flocks as they came over the peak. Le Ragnaie’s wines are a nod to this—the labels are illustrated with the traditional birdcatchers in action, and the name pays homage to the spidery nets (spider translates to ranga in Italian).
Le Ragnaie has the highest vines in the area, and the couple lets this shine in fresh, vibrant cool-climate wines. Riccardo embraces old guard Tuscan winemaking traditions with organic viticulture practices: all grapes are hand-picked (a daunting task at 1,900 feet above sea level), fermented, and aged right in Slovenian oak casks for 36 months.
Storytime aside, it’s an exceptional wine with incredible respect for Tuscan winemaking. The Trebbiano/Malvasia blend is elegant, with rich, mouth-coating texture and an autumnal but fresh and delicate acidity.
Last week’s picks were Pearl Morissette x Burdock Brewing and 2019 Fleurs Maceration, Domaine Brand & Fils.