The Capponi family have a long and illustrious history. Circumstantial evidence dates this important Florentine noble family back to 1054, while documentation extends back to 1215. The Capponi family rose to prominence in the Renaissance during the time of the Medici.
Since the thirteenth century the Capponi family have distinguished themselves as entrepreneurs, a distinction they can still claim to this day. They were among the first to develop the silk trade in Florence and with the development of banking during the Renaissance the Capponi family had links with all of the major cities of Europe. In the eighteenth century they were among important innovators in agriculture, with estates throughout Tuscany. One of these estates, Villa Calcinaia, was purchased by Niccola di Andrea Capponi in 1524 and it is still the residence of his descendants.
Count Sebastiano Capponi is the 20th generation of the Capponi family to run the 200-hectare estate of Villa Calcinaia, a family-owned winery located in the town of Greve in Chianti in the heart of Tuscany. Covered in vineyards and olive groves Tuscany is world renowned for its wine and olive oil. In fact, modern Italy is the world's largest wine producer and produces 25% of the world’s olive oil. Count Sebastiano Capponi overseas the production of high quality Tuscan wine as well as extra virgin olive oil.
The winery of Villa Calcinaia produces over 8,000 cases a year including Chianti Classico, Chianti Classico Riserva, Casarsa, Comitale (Grechetto and Vernaccia blend) and their dessert wine, Vin Santo. In 2004 Villa Calcinaia’s Casarsa, a proprietary Merlot blend, was awarded a silver medal by Le Challenge Internationale du Vin.
When not occupying himself with the running of the winery, Count Sebastiano Capponi lives in his family palace in Florence. The palace is called Palazzo Capponi delle Rovinate - meaning "of the ruins"- because it was surrounded by the ruins of other dwellings that had collapsed from erosion on this street that runs along the river Arno. The Capponi family pride themselves on preserving the palace and the decoration of the monumental rooms that house their artistic collection has not changed in over a century. Artworks of note in their collection include such renowned masterpieces as paintings by Andrea del Sarto and Jacopo Pontormo.
Book an evening yourself with Count Capponi by clicking here for our Artviva Festival.