Il Palagio Message in a Bottle 2011
Varieties: Sangiovese 70%, Syrah 15% and Merlot 15%
Villa Il Palagio estate lies amid the rolling hills of the lush, fertile Tuscan countryside south of Florence. The private home of Sting and his wife Trudie Styler and the favorite retreat for their friends and growing family, this truly remarkable sixteenth-century estate nestles among the vineyards of the Chianti region. Il Palagio is set above the picturesque Tuscan town of Figline Valdarno. It has been the summer home for Sting and Trudie’s family for the last two decades, and the setting for many of their intimate parties, private concerts and anniversaries. The estate — the villa, its guesthouses, vineyards and olive groves — has been lovingly restored by Sting and Trudie, and is now a vibrant and fully functioning organic farm and vineyard.
From the mid-1500s Il Palagio has harvested, fermented and bottled its own wines. Sting and Trudie have gone to great lengths to keep the tradition alive. Using organic farming methods, they have replanted 27 acres of vineyards since 2000, resulting in four beautiful reds: Roxanne, Casino delle Vie, Sister Moon and When We Dance.
From its very beginning, in the 1500’s, Il Palagio has been an agricultural property. In the late 1700s the Martelli family purchased the estate, which grew in size with their prosperity. In 1819 it was sold to the Countess Carlotta Barbolani of Montauto, widow of the Duke of San Clemente. Il Palagio, in the family’s hands for 178 years, produced wine, oil, wheat, corn, sugar beets, peaches, apricots and cherries.
In 1990, Trudie Styler began what would become a seven-year search for an Italian retreat. In 1997 she found Il Palagio. With stewardship of the historic Il Palagio passed to Trudie and Sting, there followed a decade of restoration and expansion; hundreds of acres that had been sold off by the Duke were reacquired, doubling the size of the estate which now comprises 865 acres, much of it given over to forest. The buildings on the property— some of which date back to the 16th century—were restored and modernized.
Trudie and Sting have a well-documented commitment to philanthropic efforts. In 1989 they founded the Rainforest Foundation which has raised more than $40 million to support indigenous rainforest peoples and help them protect their ancestral lands. As a UNICEF ambassador, Trudie has raised $10 million for their efforts. A portion of the proceeds from the sale of Il Palagio products is earmarked to benefit charities.
Legendary in Italy for its Renaissance art and striking landscape, Tuscany is also home to many of the country’s best red wines. Sangiovese reigns supreme here, as either the single varietal, or a dominant player, in almost all of Tuscany’s best.
A remarkable Chianti, named for its region of origin, will have a bright acidity, supple tannins and plenty of cherry fruit character. From the hills and valleys surrounding the medieval village of Montalcino, come the distinguished and age-worthy wines based on Brunello (Sangiovese). Earning global acclaim since the 1970s, the Tuscan Blends are composed solely of international grape varieties or a mix of international and Sangiovese. The wine called Vine Nobile di Montepulciano, composed of Prognolo Gentile (Sangiovese) and is recognized both for finesse and power.