Different Mediterranean grape varieties— 50% Alicante Nero (aka Grenache), 30% Mourvedre, 20% Carignano— sourced in the vineyards closest to the sea, in Ampeleia di Sotto, where the Mediterranean scrub dominates the landscape and permeates the air with its fragrances. The parcels are at 200-350 meters above sea level.
Ampeleia was born in 2002 from the collaboration and friendship between Elisabetta Foradori, Thomas Widmann, and Giovanni Podini; they saw in Ampeleia a place where they could not only develop an agricultural project but also fulfill a common vision. The project aspires to represent the inherent diversity and huge potential of this particular area of Maremma, the "Colline Metallifere," which are not the coastal lowlands one usually associates with the Maremma, but mineral-rich hills that have been mined since Etruscan times.
The estate results from the purchase of different plots of land, located far apart and on different altitude levels, with the precise aim of creating a great variability in altitude, soil type and microclimatic conditions; each vineyard has a distinctive identity that is enhanced by the uniqueness of the surrounding environment. Variety is the keystone and soul of Ampeleia. In fact, variety represents the project’s constant quality, both physically and symbolically, and is harmoniously expressed in its wines that taste of the varied lands of the area around the village of Roccatederighi. Many of the grape varieties that have been planted in Ampeleia are common in Mediterranean farmlands. In past times, vineyards were not planted with just one grape variety but many types of grapes were present and they were all harvested at the same time; the vineyards at Ampeleia reflect this tradition.
Within this diversity, the estate focuses on Cabernet Franc and Alicante Nero, a distinctly Tuscan biotype of Grenache. Though Ampeleia owns around 120 hectares of land, only 35 hectares are planted to vine and 56 hectares are dedicated other cultivations, in an attempt to keep the landscape intact to promote biodiversity.