Home / Wineries / Winery Nittardi
Aside from the main estate, located in the famous Chianti Classico region, Nittardi produces its wines also in Maremma, another extremely fascinating and beautiful area of Tuscany. Situated in the southern part of the region, bordering with Lazio, it is a wide territory all to be discovered, quite far from the most traditional touristic destinations. In fact, it was once an uneasy and dodgy area, with a harsh nature and home of many brigands. This troubled past has actually helped Maremma to hold onto its spirit, its traditions and its authenticity, as the area has only very recently caught the attention of tourists.
Despite being rich of historical sites – like Roselle, an ancient Etruscan city where it is possible to explore the ruins of the majestic homes and tombs of this pre-Roman civilization, or Grosseto, the area’s beloved capital – Maremma’s most surprising and unique element is its nature, which is wild, varied and lush. The Maremma Regional Park is a 9,000-hectare green oasis that includes 25 kilometers of coastline, a chain of hills that descends towards the sea with sandy beaches and cliffs, surrounded by swamps, pine forests, cultivated fields and pastures. Held between the sea and the mountains, with its scented aromatic herbs and colored berries, the park shows both the gentle and the wildest side of nature, in an unforgettable contrast of elements.
An incredible land, inhabited by equally fascinating characters: the Butteri. Symbol and soul of this tough and yet beautiful territory, they could be considered the Italian version of the American cowboys. From ancient times, the Butteri were the courageous and bold guardians of the herds of bulky Maremma cows. Considered the best tamers of Italian wild horses, always riding one, they are the living keepers of fascinating traditions and a mysterious, ancient culture.
Last but not least, as Nittardi’s production demonstrates, Maremma is also a land of amazing wines. Thanks to its climate and the closeness to the sea, the very famous Morellino is produced here as well as extremely interesting and high-quality ‘Super Tuscan’ wines.
Since they gained ownership of Nittardi in 1982, the Frankfurt publisher and artist Peter Femfert and his wife Stefania Canali, a historian from Venice, have restored the estate step-by-step, with love and dedication. The vineyards were replanted, and in 1992, the ancient vat room was replaced by a modern cellar.
In 1999, a splendid estate was purchased in Maremma, and 20 hectares have been planted with local and international grapes on the coast. This is where the Super Tuscans of Nittardi - Ad Astra and Nectar Dei - come from.
In 2013, the couple’s eldest son, Léon Femfert, decided to occupy his place in the heart of the winery activities and continue its history after spending years of his life gaining experience in various wine regions around the world. Today, Nittardi produces six different wines, all certified organic: three different wines in Chianti Classico and three wines in Maremma. Every year they receive important awards and ratings, such as the Gambero Rosso Tre Bicchieri, 5-Star Awards by Decanter, and outstanding ratings by Wine Spectator, Wine Enthusiast, Wine Advocate and James Suckling.
That of Nittardi, a boutique winery situated in the heart of the Chianti Classico region, is a story that dates back long in time, intertwined with the lives of families, Popes and artists. It is especially a story about wine and art, which this magical place combines in original and ever-evolving ways.
Created as a defensive tower, known as early as 1183 by the name of “Nectar Dei” (The Nectar of the God), in the 16th century, the Nittardi estate belonged to the Renaissance artist Michelangelo Buonarroti who, in 1549, while painting the Sistine Chapel in Rome, wrote to his nephew Lionardo so send him Nittardi wine as a “genuine gift to the Pope Julius II”. A choice that acquired a significant value because it was customary to donate an artistic artefact: by choosing its wine instead, it actually elevated it to a form of art.
This unique combination of art and wine is still cultivated today at Nittardi by Peter Femfert and his wife Stefania Canali, who took over the property in 1981, and by their eldest son, Léon, who joined the family venture in 2013.
As homage to Michelangelo, every year a well-known artist paints the label as well as the wrapping paper used for the Casanuova di Nittardi Vigna Doghessa wine bottles. The collection, started in 1981, includes works by internationally renowned artists such as Hundertwasser, Corneille, A.R. Penck, Mitoraj, Yoko Ono, Günter Grass, Dario Fo and Karl Otto Götz. Furthermore, in honour of the tradition, every year the first bottles of Nectar Dei, the top wine from the Maremma vineyards, are presented to the Pope.
Maremma is a beautiful, warm though wild territory close to the sea in the south of Tuscany. It is mostly known for cereal cultivation and animal breeding, but began viticulture once again in the 90’s. The area is now famous for blends of national and international vines that give wines harmony and balance. Nittardi’s Supertuscans are an interesting and great expression of this territory.
Maremma Supertuscan, as described by Carlo Ferrini