Petrolo is located in Mercatale Valdarno, in the center of the triangle made by Florence, Siena and Arezzo. There are no notable wine estates nearby, but with the romance and poetry that wine brings, Petrolo exemplifies a theme seen more and more in Tuscany: little pockets, special places where extraordinary and singular wines can be made.
Petrolo is in fact singular in a very visible way: you arrive at the entrance and you start climbing. And climbing. You go up the hills, and at the top of the estate is a tower dating to the 12th century, still in pristine condition, built to serve as a lookout point for thirty miles all around. In the morning, while fogs cover the valley floor, Petrolo is perched in the sky, an island in a sea of clouds. The altitude, the galestro soils, the lakes on the property that moderate the temperature, and the biodiversity of the estate – only 76 of 672 acres are planted under vine – all contribute to this special mesoclimate.
This Estate was bought by the Bazzocchi family in the 1940s and since the mid 80s has been headed by Lucia Bazzocchi Sanjust with the assistance of her son Luca who is now managing the winery. The technical agronomist is Carlo Nesterini, the oenologist is Simone Cuccoli and since June 2002, Carlo Ferrini has been collaborating on agricultural and vinification issues.
While Petrolo’s merlot wine, Galatrona, deservedly receives fireworks in the press and is part of the history of Tuscany’s development in the late 1980s and 1990s, Petrolo’s sangiovese wine, Torrione, is an equally thrilling success - a singular Sangiovese from a special area that long ago was left just oustide Chianti Classico, and today produces wine more often compared to great Brunello.
Galatrona: “Le Pin of Tuscany” Wine Spectator
Torrione: 2006 WS Top 100, 2009 WS Top 100
“Proprietor Luca Sanjust and his team continue to make some of the most sensual, pleasurable wines in Tuscany.” Wine Advocate
“Sanjust now makes one of the best merlots in Italy, Galatrona, which has been compared to some of the top names in Bordeaux, including Petrus.” Wine Spectator