Thursday, July 13, 2023

Bolgheri of Southern Tuscany with Tenuta Sette Cieli

When we think of Tuscan wines the mind gravitates to the wines of the Chianti wine region like the ones I shared last week from I Veroni.  The southern part of Tuscany has many other great regions to experience including Bolgheri, the Maremma and Montecucco to mention a few.  Today let’s dig into the territory of Bolgheri and the wines of Tenuta Sette Cieli.  

The winery - Tenuta Sette Cieli

Tenuta Sette Cieli began in 1994 and was established by the Ratti family.  The Ratti family originated from Lake Como in northern Italy before moving to the area of Bolgheri.  Erika Ratti had a desire to move to Bolgheri and their son, Ambrogio, believed in the potential of making wine there.  The family purchased 170 acres of land between the areas of Bolgheri and Castagneto Carducci near the village of Monteverdi Marittimo.  The land was originally used for horseback riding and hunting wild boar until the year 2000 when the Ratti family started to plant vineyards after receiving interest from other wineries to lease the land to plant their own vineyards.  They knew there was potential in the land so decided to discover it for themselves.  

In 2012 Ambrogio took over the estate focusing on quality, practices in the vineyards and purchased additional acreage.  About 17 acres are planted to international varieties to include Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Malbec on soils made of a mix of sandy, clay and rock.  

The region - Bolgheri

Although the wines I’m sharing today are listed under the Toscana IGT, Tenuta Sette Cieli is situated in the area of Bolgheri within the province of Livorno.  I haven’t written too much about Bolgheri, but it is an important zone to know in understanding the Tuscan wine region.  The area is not rather large covering about 8 miles from north to south and 4 miles from east to west.  It is covered in thick forests that start in the hills known as the Colline Metalifere that slope down to the Tyrrhenian Sea.  Here the Tyrrhenian Sea influences the climate providing a sea breeze that cools off the vineyards reducing the humidity and helping to prevent fungal diseases.

The wines of the Bolgheri DOC cover this territory mentioned except west of Via Aurelia along the coastline, a road built by Romans in 3 B.C.  It is not included since the terrain isn’t ideal growing conditions for vineyards.  The vineyards here reach altitudes up to 1,250 feet with soils made of mostly sandy clay and marine sediment.  In 2006 known Professor Attila’s Scienza determined this area has over 27 soil types so much variety can be found depending upon the vineyard.

Bolgheri DOC wine region in southern Tuscany
Bollgheri landscape - sourced from Consorzio di Tutela Bolgheri e Bolgheri Sassicaia

The original Bolgheri DOC included only white from Vermentino grapes and rose wines based on Sangiovese.  Reds were permitted in 1994, which resulted in the Bolgheri Rosso DOC, Bolgheri Superiore DOC and the specialized Bolgheri Sassicaia DOC creation.  The wines typical of this area include a blend of varying percentages of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc with possible additions of Sangiovese, Petit Verdot and Syrah.

The wines  

I tasted 3 wines this week from Tenuta Sette Cieli listed in order of my preference.  All the wines are 100% organic, but the winery is not certified.  

Tenuta Sette Cieli Yantra Incipio Indaco

The 2021 Tenute Sette Cieli Yantra Toscana IGT is a blend of 40% Merlot and 60% Cabernet Sauvignon.   The wine is fermented in stainless steel with indigenous yeasts and spends 6 months in French oak that is 4-6 years old plus an additional 6 months in the bottle. 

This is their entry-level wine and portrayed itself as such.  Ruby red with purple hues with aromas of ripe raspberry, cocoa, and a hint of bell pepper.  Medium-bodied with the fruit up front and nice acidity.  Smooth tannins with the oak showing up on the finish.  14.5% SRP $24

The highlight of tasting these wines was the next two.  The 2018 Tenuta Sette Cieli Indaco Toscana IGT is a blend of 34% Malbec, 33% Cabernet Sauvignon and 33% Merlot.  The wine is named after the color indigo named after the Tuscan sunsets frequently seen from the winery.  Fermented in stainless steel the wine spends 18 months in 35% new French barrique.  Ruby colored in the glass with jammy aromas of ripe, rich blueberries and raspberries.  A structured, full-bodied with rich red and black fruits.  Balanced with good acidity and an elegant finish with notes of vanilla.  ABV 14% SRP $60

The 2018 Tenuta Sette Cieli Scipio Toscana IGT is named after the famous Roman general that defeated Hannibal after the Second Punic War.  Made from 100% Cabernet Franc the vineyards are located at about 1,300 feet above sea level.  This wine spends 18 months in 40% new French oak barrels.  Ruby in color leaning towards garnet hues.  A rich nose of blueberry, blackberry and raspberry with a hint of green bell pepper and coffee beans.  Full-bodied with complexity.  Great acidity with the same fruit profile showing on the palate with some spice and leather.  A lengthy elegant finish.  ABV 14.5% SRP $140

You can find the wines of Tenuta Sette Cieli on  They are imported by Wilson Daniels.


*I may receive commissions if any wines are purchased directly from this buyer to support the operations of Vino Travels.  The wines shared today were received as samples, but opinions are always my own.

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