Barone Andrea Franchetti’s background, rich, varied and artistic, contributed to his extraordinarily complex character – a combination of genius, brilliance and determination. The Franchetti family moved in exalted and enlightened circles over centuries. They have touched base, through marriage and friendships with the Rothschilds, artist Cy Twombley and Ernest Hemmingway.
Before returning to Italy, Andrea Franchetti went to Bordeaux to learn the art of winemaking from his dear friends, Jean-Luc Thunevin of Château Valandraud and Peter Sisseck of Dominio de Pingus.
In 1992, he landed in rural Tuscany, the isolated Val d’orcia, where Tuscany intersects with Umbria and Lazio, a remote region that hadn't seen vines in years. Andrea carved out his own access over a tree-covered hillside, starting a vineyard from scratch, building terraces in a unique inland valley at between 450 and 600 meters above sea level.
He sold one of his Uncle Cy’s paintings to buy Tenuta di Trinoro, which he refers to as “a godforsaken place….with an ex-volcano between it and the sea”. He has also said of his first visit “I went crazy for the place, I was mesmerised’.
Here, the soil was eroded rock in parts and in others limestone and clay – reminiscent, in Andrea’s eyes, of his beloved Bordeaux. This was one reason why he looked towards Bordeaux varietals rather than Tuscany’s ubiquitous Sangiovese. And it was proved he is right.
Now, Tenuta di Trinoro is the flag-bearer of the Trinoro estate, a rare & high quality wines, the blend of which is vintage-dependent. Cabernet Franc and Merlot tend to dominate, with varying amounts of Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot. Palazzi, 100% Merlot, the first commercial vintage in 1997 together with Tenuta di Trinoro. It was a hit amongst critics, but then Franchetti decided to stop making it for ten years. 2009 was such a beautiful vintage, however, that he was inspired to begin producing this wine again due to how wonderful the Merlot had developed that season.