What is your favorite type of wine? Perhaps it’s the Cabernet Sauvignon, a classic red wine that also happens to be the most popular variety in the world. Or maybe you prefer white wines, such as Chardonnay or Sauvignon Blanc. But have you ever tried a bottle straight from the largest wine-producing country in the world? If not, it’s time to plan a luxurious Tuscany wine tour.
Why you should go on a Tuscany wine tour
- Taste some of the world’s best wine
No one can doubt the love Italians have for their food and wine. Although the process of winemaking in Italy was brought about by colonization, the country has nurtured the art with the help of its perfectly Mediterranean climate.
Now, Italy is the largest wine producer in the world, with Veneto, Apulia, Emilia-Romagna, Sicily, and Tuscany churning out millions of liters of wine each year. But that’s not all—each wine-producing region has its own spin on the famous beverage.
Take Tuscany, for example. The region may not produce the most wine for Italy; however, it takes “quality over quantity” seriously. As a result, there are over 30 Denominazione di Origine Controllata (DOC) wines in Tuscany alone, a status granted to varieties that meet high standards for production area, style, and maximum and minimum alcohol levels.
Tuscany is also home to 11 of Italy’s 77 total Denominazione di Origine Controllata e Garantita (DOCG) wines, a status that was once only granted to superior varieties like the Brunello di Montalcino and Chianti.
- Enjoy authentic Italian food.
A glass of wine wouldn’t be complete without some food to pair it with. And luckily, Tuscany has no lack of both. Italian cuisine relies heavily on simple yet fresh ingredients for the perfect meal. Tuscan food is just one example.
If you’re looking for a complete Tuscan food experience while leaving room for more treats, try the Panzanella. This salad contains every staple Italian ingredient: tomatoes, onions, basil, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and bread. Then, you can indulge in a heaping plate of Bistecca alla Fiorentina – a juicy T-bone steak harvested straight from the Chianina cattle.
And, of course, the classic pairing is wine and cheese. In Tuscany, it is a must to try the Pecorino, a hard sheep milk cheese that tastes absolutely luscious alongside red Sangiovese-based wines.
- Embark on an adventure
You’ll likely need to walk a mile or two after eating all the great food in Tuscany. But don’t worry—Tuscany has no lack of adventures to choose from. This central Italian region is known for its lush landscapes and overflowing nature, with mountains that offer challenging climbs. You can even relax and visit the naturally formed hot springs in Bagno Vignoni, or go scuba diving near the coast.
Meanwhile, for families who prefer the city, you can explore several UNESCO World Heritage Sites like San Gimignano or go off the beaten path and discover Tuscany’s hidden villages.
Top five wines to try on your Tuscany wine tour
You’ve heard all about Tuscany’s famous wines and what makes them so special. But wine is a vast subject, and if you’re only staying for a few days, your time is spent better tasting only the best offerings.
So what are some wines you should look out for a while you’re in Tuscany?
- Brunello di Montalcino
Montalcino is one of the first villages you’ll visit on your Tuscany wine tour. Here, you’ll find the Brunello di Montalcino, a DOCG wine made with nothing but Sangiovese grapes. It is characterized by an intense, almost reflective ruby color with hints of blackberry, tobacco, and leather, pairing perfectly with Bistecca alla Fiorentina.
- Chianti Classico
If you’re visiting Tuscany from September to October, you’re right in time for the harvesting season. When you get the chance, make sure to have a glass of Chianti Classico—another DOCG wine made with 80% Sangiovese grapes.
The Chianti Classico is known for its brilliant red color, and as you take a sip, you’ll notice hints of cherry and violet. This wine is incredibly versatile and can pair with a wide range of Italian foods, but Prosciutto Toscano and red meat are highly recommended.
- Super Tuscan
It’s all in the name—the Super Tuscan is a wine that will never disappoint. Despite Tuscany’s long history with winemaking, the Super Tuscan was only invented in the late 1960s, resulting in a stunning combination of Sangiovese, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Merlot grapes.
Because of its unique winemaking process, the Super Tuscan is more purple than red and boasts heavily velvety tannins. It pairs wonderfully with a broad range of dishes, including stuffed portabella mushrooms, vegetable pasta, seared tuna with cannellini beans and rosemary, and ossobuco.
- Vin Santo
It’s always good to leave room for dessert, and the Vin Santo wine is the perfect way to cap off your meal. Also known as the “holy wine,” this Tuscan variety is made with partially dried grapes to enhance its sweetness.
The Vin Santo is traditionally a dessert wine, and it works best with cantucci, a well-loved Italian snack made with biscotti and almonds.
- Vino Nobile di Montepulciano
A short drive away from Montalcino will bring you to Montepulciano, a small village filled with archaeological sites and relaxing streets. But perhaps the most famous part of Montepulciano is its wine: the Vino Nobile.
Like most Tuscan wines, the Vino Nobile di Montepulciano is a red wine with 70% to 100% Sangiovese grapes. It is widely favored for its refreshing taste boasting notes of plum, gentle tannins, and bright acidity. You can enjoy a glass of Vino Nobile on its own or pair it with different roasted meats, such as beef, lamb, duck, and wild boar.
Are you ready to tickle your taste buds with Tuscany’s best food and wine? Plan a culinary trip with an experienced tour operator now! Luxury providers will help you make the most of your vacation, taking you to Italy’s most renowned places and offering exclusive services such as private airport transfers, professional art and history guides, and a personal English-speaking driver.