The Antico Podere Gagliole winery, located in the heart of Chianti Classico in Castellina, has been owned by the Swiss Bär-Bettschart family since 1990. Monika Bär-Bettschart before falling in love with Thomas, first fell in love with this little piece of the world at a young age during her holidays. They acquire Gagliole only after their marriage. The family still lives in Zurich, but their "heart" is in Tuscany.
At the very beginning the vineyards were leased. And only about ten years ago the family decided to produce and market wines under their own label. In 2011 Thomas Bär extended the family estate by buying another winery - La Valletta in Panzano in Chianti. As a result, Gagliole now has a total of 20 hectares of vineyards, all of which are managed sustainably.
Castellina in Chianti
Ten of Gagliole's 20 hectares of land are located in Castellina in Chianti. Here the vines grow on antique terraces, in between olive trees and roses. This cultivation method, which was already common in Tuscany in the Middle Ages, not only looks spectacular, but the arrangement of the terraces and the special location ensure a pleasant interplay between sun and shade for the vines. And that brings an ecological balance in the vineyard. The soils here are Galestro, i.e. loose layers of rock in which the vines can form deep roots. This produces mineral-elegant wines.
Panzano in Chianti
Ten more hectares of vineyards are located in Panzano in Chianti, known for its ideal growing conditions and for its shell shape and perfect microclimate. The vineyards of La Valletta are situated quite high in the valley and therefore get much sun during the day and at the same time feel the cool winds. Together with these factors, the clay soils, which are interspersed with many stones, bring structure and strength to the wines. The age of the vines growing up here on the edge of the golden valley ranges from two to forty-five years. This creates a perfect balance between youth and maturity, freshness and spice.
The emblem of Gagliole, which can also be seen on the bottles, represents a compass and a horizontal beam. These symbols have already existed since the Middle Ages on the "house brand" of the Bettschart family. Two signs that stand for the highest quality, unlimited care and absolute precision. And it is precisely with these principles that the Bär-Bettschart family, together with their team, are producing today their wines. But of course without forgetting the traditional Tuscan traditions.
At the same time, Gagliole uses the unusual method of "vinification intégrale". The grapes are first gently destemmed, sorted at the vibrating line and then directly transferred to the barrique barrels, where all fermentation processes will take place. A "holistic" method. The barrels must be turned several times a day to ensure constant contact between juice, skins, seeds and wood. In contrast to traditional fermentation methods, the temperature in the barrel is lower and very constant and this all lasts 45 to 60 days. That is how they create wines with denser colors and aromas, reminiscent of wild berries and spices.