Vinci | Wine Loft

Finding the dalleVigne Wine Loft requires a bewildering transit through an industrial estate. But once you reach it, it’s quite a find.

As a restaurant, it’s known for consistently superior cuisine, beautifully presented, in a smart but relaxed ambiance with a marvellous view over the Montalbano hills west of Florence. And surprisingly, given said hills, it’s renowned for a fabulous fish menu. Chef-patron Fabrizio Gavianoreturned from a 30-year mission promoting Italian cuisine in the wider world to take over here, and son Daniele is the charming wine expert. Lots of fresh fish dishes then, but also home-grown meats and game in a creative menu from appetizers through to desserts at prices more than justified by the quality.

And the cellar offers over 300 labels, with some authority, for the Wine Loft is the convivial heart of the Cantine Leonardo da Vinci winery. One of the biggest cooperatives in the Chianti region, it boasts 160 producers tending around 500 hectares of prime vineyards with excellent results. Bottles from the Cantine Leonardo da Vinci are regularly commended, from their Brunello di Montalcino through several versions of Chianti, to Ser Piero and Trebbiano whites and Vin Santo. The winery itself merits a visit.

DalleVigne is the commercial branch of the group and distributor of many other wines too, and the Wine Loft its genial offshoot. In a restored farm building just above the winery with its own park and olive groves, a terrace and two floors decked out in concrete, steel and wood, it’s a showroom, wine shop and tasting bar as well as a restaurant, offering special theme dinners and wine appreciation evenings too.

See here for directions and opening times.