There have been a handful of discoveries in the past five years that have truly shaped our ranking of the best Tuscan and Piedmontese estates. The wines made by Isole e Olena fall among the region's best.
The name ‘Isole e Olena’ was conceived in the 1950s when two adjoining estates, ‘Isole’ and ‘Olena,’ were purchased by the De Marchi family and were combined to form one. Today the Isole e Olena estate is run by Paolo De Marchi and his family. Paolo comes from a family with three generations of winemaking experience in the northern section of Piedmont. He was raised in close contact with the wine world as he has always enthusiastically followed the development of his grandfather’s estate located near Gattinara, Villa Sperino, where Lessona wine is produced.
The traditional four-grape Chianti Classico blend was gradually altered to diminish the quantity of white grapes present until complete elimination. Thus the Isole o Olena Chianti evolved from being a light, young wine to the fuller-bodied wine of today, which is destined for cellar aging. Simultaneously, Paolo began experimenting with the production of a wine made exclusively of Sangiovese grapes. His efforts in this direction have yielded the resultant wine named Cepparello. In 1980, he produced the first Cepparello.