The Castello di Gabbiano is an emblematic medieval castle located on the edge of a hill in the territorial area of Chianti Classico. The castle is in the nearness of the village of MercataleVal di Pesa and in a short distance time from the city of Florence.
The castle is surrounded by an idyllic countryside which shows the magnificence of the Chianti Classico area: plentiful of green hills, thick woods, large valleys with olive trees and high and elegant cypresses which embellish the landscape and also announce the approach road to the country houses.
The castle has a long and interesting story. It comes back from the 12th century. First it was a defensive fortress to watch over one of the main roads between Florence and Sienna. Some years later its owners, the powerful Florentine Bardi family, built a big wine cellar for the production and the storage of their wines adorned by vaulting ceilings. At the ending of the 12th century they enlarged the castle and encircled it into new fortified walls. At the beginning of the 15th century the fortress passed into the hands of the noble Soderini family who had a leading position in Florence. In 1446 the Soderini family transformed the castle into a fortified mansion with similar features as it has today and made incessant improvements to their lands. The set of the internal structures was changed into a huge open square surrounded by four cylindrical towers.
At the beginning of the 16th century the city of Bologna asked to the Florentine govern to send them Michelangelo Buonarotti. The head of the household of Castello di Gabbiano, Pier Soderini, was commissioned by Florence to answer Bologna and he wrote a letter of introduction for Michelangelo. In November 1506 Michelangelo went to Bologna and erected a bronze statue of Pope Giulio II.
In the late 16th century the Solderini family demonstrated their opposition to the Medici’s regime. They were expelled from Florence and obliged to leave the castle. In the 17th century the Solderini returned from their banishment. When the main repairing works were made in the castle, they reinstated there once again.
The present owners of the Castlle of Gabbiano have restored the entire property perfectly preserving its original features and have set an example of modern viticulture using the top winemaking techniques.
Their wines are one of the most noted Chianti Classico labels in Italy and throughout the world. The main ones are:
- Castello di Gabbiano per Anita
- Castello di Gabbiano Chianti Classico Riserva Oro
- Castello di Gabbiano Chianti Classico Riserva
- Gabbiano Chianti Classico
- Gabbiano Chianti
Where to eat:
- “Il Cavaliere”: the fine restaurant is located in an ancient beautiful cottage on a hilltop which overlooks the Castle of Gabbiano. It offers a superb local traditional cuisine presented and served in a creative and innovative way. It has a pretty panoramic terrace for meals in season. Wine list is first-rate.
Main Towns of Chianti
Badia a Passignano,
Barberino val d' Elsa,
Castellina in Chianti,
Castello di Brolio,
Castello di Gabbiano,
Castello di Meleto,
Colle Val D' Elsa,
Greve in Chianti,
Mercatale Val di Pesa,
Panzano in Chianti,
Radda in Chianti,
Tavernelle Val di Pesa,
Badia a Coltibuono.
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