Barone Ricasoli is the oldest winery in Italy and according to Family Business, a leading American magazine that lists world classification of family businesses, Barone Ricasoli is the fourth oldest company in the world still in the same place from the beginning and the second in the wine industry.


The name Ricasoli has been linked to wine since 1141, when Brolio Castle passed into the hands of the Ricasoli family
The family tree, reproduced in a print from 1584, is also one of the first images we have of Chianti. After centuries defending the lands and the signorial feuds, the Ricasolis dedicated themselves to the development of agriculture and vineyards. Already in the 1600s documents report the first exports to Amsterdam and England, whereas at the start of the 1900s Brolio wines were known and exported all over the world: China, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Guatemala, Costa Rica and the then British African colonies.
Baron Bettino Ricasoli (1809 – 1880), illustrious politician, researcher and far-sighted wine entrepreneur, was the promoter of the most famous wine in the world today: Chianti.




1872. Chianti was born 
after more than thirty years of research and experiments, Baron Bettino Ricasoli wrote down the formula in a famous letter addressed to Professor Cesare Studiati at the University of Pisa:
...I verified the results of the early experiments, that is, that the wine receives most of its aroma from the Sangioveto (which is my particular aim) as well as a certain vigour in taste; the Canajuolo gives it a sweetness which tempers the harshness of the former without taking away any of its aroma, though it has an aroma all of its own; the Malvagia, which could probably be omitted for wines for laying down, tends to dilute the wine made from the first two grapes, but increases the taste and makes the wine lighter and more readily suitable for daily consumption… 
The production rules have recently been modified, abandoning Malvasia, as Bettino Ricasoli had already supposed, leaving Sangiovese in the leading role, with a maximum permitted amount of 20% of other red grape varieties.