PHOTO BY JOHN WERICH
Count Sebastiano Capponi and his family entered the Tuscan wine trade in 1215. He is the 20th generation to run the Villa Calcinaia winery.
The Delaware Valley Italian American Herald is proud to present the First Publisher’s Wine Tasting and Gourmet dinner featuring Count Sebastiano Capponi of Villa Calcinaia in Florence, Italy. The dinner will be held at 6 p.m. Nov. 16 at Margaret Kuo’s Kitchen in the Promenade at Granite Run in Media, Pa.
A Knight of St. Stephen and a medal-holder of the Sovereign Military order of Malta, Count Sebastiano Capponi has presented wine pairings all around the world including mainland China. The Count’s visit back to the United States includes a special wine pairing dinner at Margaret Kuo’s newest signature restaurant.
The Capponi family dates back to 1054. They entered the Tuscan wine trade in 1215 and Count Sebastiano Capponi is the 20th generation to run the 200-hectare estate of Villa Calcinaia winery, which dates to 1524. Nobility came to the Capponi family in 1701 when they were given their first title of “Count.”
The Count is the manager and winemaker of the family vineyards and winery at Villa Calcinaia in the rolling hills of Greve in the Chianti Region of Tuscany, a few miles south of Florence. The property, nestled in the Greve valley, comprises olive groves, pastureland and woodland. The vineyards of Villa Calcinaia produce an average of more than 100,000 bottles with wine varieties that include Merlot, Sangiovese and Canalolo.
In the last 50 years, the Capponi family has worked to improve the quality of their product and gained worldwide respect and demand for it. Today they farm organically, a process started in 2011, and the 2014 vintage was the first certified organic label.
“Part of it I think is that it’s the place where I live. You would like to live in the place that is as healthy as possible. I am working for this generation of the family, but we have had this winery for many, many generations, I would like to leave something as a legacy also for my kids and my grandkids,” he said. “I don’t think that ruined soil is one of the things I should leave to my kids. I try to preserve what I got, and I try maybe to improve it.”
Even Hollywood got a taste of Villa Calcinaia at his family’s palace when their estate was used as a set for the second “Hannibal” film starring Anthony Hopkins.
The evening will feature entertainment by members of the Munier Mandolin & Guitar Orchestra and Academy of Vocal Arts International Opera soloists.
The Kuo family dynasty has roots in China and Taiwan and since coming to America has introduced award-winning authentic Chinese cuisine to the Delaware Valley. A James Beard Foundation recognized chef, Margaret Kuo’s restaurants are a family affair with husband Warren and son Mark’s expertise in wine and foods.
Count Capponi’s appearance is made possible through Pio Imports. Pre-registration is required due to limited seating. To register call (610) 891-8880.