Under Italy's Tuscan Sun

Updated: Apr 24

When dreaming of wine, one often finds themselves holding a glass of full-bodied Brunello di Montalcino, considered one of the premier wines of the world.

This bold wine made of 100% Sangiovese, beloved for its gorgeous acidic structure, notes of cherry and deep plum, nuanced with vanilla, tobacco and leather from having been aged in oak barrels a minimum of two years.

Beyond the grape variety, what makes a Brunello di Montalcino so special is largely due to the region the grapes are grown. Montalcino located within the treasured countryside of Tuscany, just below Siena and only 70 miles from the sea, allowing the maritime winds to contribute in developing the grapes fruit-forward nature.


Taking a tour through the vineyards and cellars with welcoming owner Gianluca Terzuoli of Santa Giulia Montalcino, we learn about the love story with his wife Kae, originally from Japan, and how the vineyard was started by his Italian grandfather post World War II. “We’ve grown over the years...in 1999 we produced 1,733 bottles of Brunello...today, about 35,000.”

According to Gianluca, “The terroir of Montalcino is blessed by just the right conditions for superb wines...which is why it is very important to take care of the land and the soil...a primary reason I have moved to organic farming.” One of the natural methods used throughout the vineyards, is that Gianluca allows grass to grow around the vines, as the roots from the grass allow for greater movement and oxygenation of the soil.

Undoubtably Santa Guilia Montalcino gives visitors a true taste of Tuscany with its impressive small family vineyard and farm that produces marvelous wines and olive oil, along with grains for homemade bread, fruits, vegetables, plus free-range pork products made from happy pigs who spend their days eating acorns in the woods.

The authentically delicious wines and delightful hospitality of Santa Guilia Montalcino are recommended by Rick Steves in his Best of Europe series, as well as by Tinto.

As for food pairings, the neighbor’s pecorino cheese, made by raw grass-fed sheep milk, beautifully complements their wines and homemade prosciutto.

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Montalcino & Tuscany

After a tour, sitting under the Tuscan sun sipping a glass of Santa Giulia’s Brunello di Montalcino one cannot help but find themselves beheld in a moment of paradiso, eyes soaking in the shimmering honeycomb countryside while a smooth balance of acidity and deep fruit dances on the palate, creating an unmistakable song of amore.


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Santa Giulia Brunello ia Montalcino Riserva 2013 DOCG


Tasting Notes: This wine pours a deep ruby red color and gives intense, elegant, spicy aromas. The palate is dry, warm and soft with a wonderfully well balanced body. This is a very elegant wine with fantastic structure. It is suitable for long aging due to the presence of ripe tannins and acidity.


Grape Variety: 100% Sangiovese


Aging: 24 months in Slovenian oak barrels, 12 months in small French barrels, plus a minimum of 12 months in the bottle and a total of 6 years from harvest to release.


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Written by world traveler and wine lover Séanna Marie


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