Chianti wine trail: Florence to Siena
The Chiantigiana (SR 222), the road connecting Florence to Siena, is one of the most beautiful driving routes in Italy, passing acre upon acre of vineyards producing the world-famous Chianti Classico DOCG.
Chianti has been one of Italy’s most important wine-producing regions for more than three centuries. It was here that the family of the Grand Duke of Tuscany began cultivating grapes during the 18th and 19th centuries in the region that would become modern Chianti.
The best time of year to visit Tuscany is during the September harvest or just before to see the vines bowing under the weight of the ripening Sangiovese grapes – the variety from which Chianti Classico is made.
Another good reason to visit in September is to join in one of the local festivals that celebrate the harvest, such as the Vino al Vino, held on the third week in September, in the small town of Panzano, where many local wines can be sampled by the glass.
For a truly inspiring tour of the Chiantigiana, make time to visit some of the ancient towns along the way and call by the vineyards. Most wineries are open to the public, but double check before you visit to avoid disappointment. Here are some of our favourites: