Fact Sheet

[Il Vit-ZEE-ah-TOE]

Location: Panzano, Tuscany & Trapani, Sicily, Italy.

After a lifetime surrounded by everything having to do with wine, Tara Empson is ready to make her mark on the world with her very own creation. Along with Matteo Bernabei, son of renowned winemaker Franco Bernabei, she has created Il Viziato, a unique blend of Sangiovese and Nero d’Avola grapes, native to two very distinct regions in Italy, Tuscany and Sicily.

The Sangiovese grapes used for this wine grow in the finest vineyard locations in the Chianti Classico area, just outside Panzano, 985 feet (300 meters) above sea level. The area is most suited to growing the high-acidity grape, thanks to the limestone in the soil, which contributes to the making of elegant wines with intense aromas. While the soil is great in Tuscany for Sangiovese grapes, the makers of this wine had to travel south for Nero d'Avola grapes, which love the hot, arid temperatures of western Sicily. The slightly sloped vineyards are 165 feet (50 meters) above sea level and vines are bush-trained to stand up to the great Sicilian winds. Sicily's bold fruit-forward wines with hearty tannins and acidity are an unprecedented yet perfect match for Sangiovese and its elegance and structure.

What makes this wine so special are the unique winemaking techniques used. A small portion of the grapes are dried first on the vine and then in drying lofts. Grapes lose 30% of their water weight, concentrating the sugars. The result of this method is a plush, round, full-flavored wine that is wonderfully easy to drink.