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Woman. Winemaker. With a boundless passion for Sangiovese and the Chianti Classico wine.
This is a very special time for Angela Fronti, winemaker and owner of the cellars of Istine, in Radda in Chianti.
Because in one of the world’s homelands of the Sangiovese, during Benvenuto Brunello, Angela was awarded with the Premio Gambelli 2018, the seventh edition of the award named after Giulio Gambelli organised by ASET (Associazione Stampa Enogastroagroalimentare Toscana) and IGP (blog network “I Giovani Promettenti”).
We’re here to celebrate her triumph, have a nice chat on WeChianti and reflect on a few things.
Angela, what does winning the Gambelli prize mean for you?
“A great satisfaction. I discovered Gambelli even before joining the university thanks to some friends’ stories and the wines produced by the wineries that he worked with. He really inspired me. Of course every participant in the competition wanted to win, but for me there was something special, a kind of true affection towards Giulio Gambelli”.
Does it feel more like an honour or a responsibility? An arrival or a starting point?
“The award is certainly an honour, and a sign that I’m on the right path in pursuing my goal, perfecting my skills in the vineyards and in the cellars. I certainly haven’t arrived yet, I still want to learn more and grow professionally. My goal for the future is to keep improving”.
How important is the territory of Radda in Chianti for your professional identity?
“Very much, my roots are in Radda. However, I think it was important for me to have worked and gained experience outside this area before I started working in my family business. If I had started working here straight after graduation, maybe I wouldn’t have understood the difficulties and the beauty of this territory, I might have taken it for granted, and perhaps I would have felt less rooted in it than I do now “.
Can we say that, even in the light of the harmony that reigns among the wine producers in the Radda territory, your award could represent a prize for the way of making wine which is typical of the Radda area?
“I don’t know if there is a specific way to make wine in the Radda territoy, but it’s true that we’re a group of winemakers whose objective are the quality and the expression of our territory through the Sangiovese grape. Each of us then puts his own identity and passion into his wine. Apart from a few exceptions, we are almost all organic winemakers. We collaborate, we give each other a hand to improve expressing this territory through our vineyards, where we have an average altitude of 500 meters, impervious soils and plenty of woods. Our wines have common characteristics like acidity, freshness, elegance, so yes, they are definitely recognisable. I hope this award is enjoyed by all the people from Radda, and that it could become an extra motivation for young people to do this job”.
How do you feel when you think about your work?
“There are moments when I am physically very tired, I cannot do anything without committing myself completely, but it’s a beautiful job that I’m passionate about and it’s the only one I would want to do in my life”.
Is there an ideal wine for you?
“For me there are many wines that are ideal, all those that express territory and vintage, from Piedmont to Basilicata”.
And a wine that you have not yet done but would like to do?
“Every new harvest is a new challenge!”.