For very many visitors to this part of Tuscany, wine tasting in Chianti will be one of the pleasures of their stay. The Chianti Classico wine zone forms a more or less oval area between Florence and Sienna packed with vineyards and wineries, many of which offer tastings of their own wines. These are marked by roadside signs indicating “Degustazione” and nowadays often also “Wine Tasting”. You can also keep your eyes open for an enoteca that, for a small fee, will allow you taste a range of wines from different producers. There are three good enotecas in Greve in Chianti and Panzano in Chianti, and a famous one in Sienna, among others.
Two castles near Greve in Chianti offer wine tastings in atmospheric surroundings – these are Vicchiomaggio and Verrazzano – and there are endless opportunities all along the via Chiantigiana and the side roads through Volpaia, Radda in Chianti and Gaiole in Chianti.
If you “taste and spit”, there’s no problem with motoring around Chianti tasting as many wines as you like. However, if you drink the wines you’re tasting or have one of the meals offered with wine tasting at Vicchiomaggio, for example, then it might be worthwhile considering a minibus wine tour. These are expensive but pack a lot of sightseeing into a day, and, of course, you leave the driving to the driver-guide.
Last but not least, let’s remember that although the Chianti Classico zone coincides more or less with historical Chianti in the geographical sense, the general Chianti wine area is much bigger and is divided into eight Chianti denominations, each with its own wine sensation.