Since 1942, Mario Incisa della Rocchetta has been working on his wine project, amidst fun and a taste for a challenge. Thus began the adventure of Sassicaia, a "simple vague experiment" as the Marquis would call the birth of his wine years later.
Wine Narrative


Today, the narrative of Tenuta San Guido's three wines is based on three different expressions of the same territory: Sassicaia, from which it all began, and Guidalberto, which after a genesis of over twenty years has a recognisable identity and style. These are the first two wines, a different expression of the same land. Le Difese, the latest addition, is a well-made and very pleasant wine that gracefully welcomes the selections of the other two wines in addition to Sangiovese, which shows its typically Tuscan backbone.

An unprecedented path for Italian oenology


It was an event that was to change the destiny of Bolgheri, opening a new path in Italian oenology. Luigi Veronelli was the first to realise the greatness and importance of this wine.



The 1968 vintage saw the debut of Sassicaia, a courageous wine that at the time, broke away from the standard way of making Tuscan Wine.
The wine is named after the stony soil which it comes from, and, by its nature, is destined to go far.



Guidalberto marks the new millennium: the 2000 vintage appears on the market with less pretense than Sassicaia and with a more approachable drinkability, while showing a great aging potential. It is not intended to follow in the footsteps of Sassicaia, but rather be a wine that shows another expression of the Tenuta San Guido territory.
The label depicts the Oratory of San Guido and the wine is named after the family ancestor Guidalberto della Gherardesca, an agricultural pioneer in the Bolgheri area. It was in the first decades of the 1800’s when he built the first factories, and churches, and planned the avenue of cypress trees, the Viale dei Cipressi. These trees were initially used to mark the boundaries between the different crops. Its ornamental value, with the tall cypresses running in double rows, came after that.


A lively and serious wine

Le Difese’s first vintage was 2002. It is the latest addition at Tenuta San Guido. It is an extremely pleasant, smooth and versatile wine that welcomes a selection of grapes blended with Sangiovese, while it exemplifies its qualities when paired with food. Le Difese takes its name from the teeth of the wild boar, depicted in gold on the label.
Olive Oil

Extra Virgin Olive Oil

An oil that embodies the spirit of Tenuta San Guido

The olive-growing area of the farm is arranged in mixed systems, in accordance with
agriculture of traditional type and characteristic of Tuscan farms. The olive trees, of variety leccino, moraiolo, pendolino, frantoio, are not planted close to each other in a specialized plant, but arranged in rows, alternated by fields or vineyards. The Tenuta San Guido extends for 2,500 hectares, of which 110 are olive groves with about 11,000 adult plants. Of these about 2000 have only landscape value and soil conservation, being present in difficult soils to cultivate.

Tenuta San Guido: an area of ​​2500 of which only a small part is dedicated to the cultivation of vineyards

Countess Clarice della Gherardesca brought a dowry of 2.500 hectares in the Bolgheri area, the Tenuta San Guido. Her husband Mario Incisa immediately realised that this was one of the most extraordinary biotypes in Mediterranean Europe and began experimenting with some French vines. In fact, he had sensed an obvious similarity between the Bolgheri soils and the Graves region in Bordeaux, which he was very familiar with. The reason was the mainly gravelly soil with the presence of clay which is very favorable for the production of great reds.

A legacy to cherish and invest in

He, therefore, decided to plant the first cabernet sauvignon vineyard, just over one hectare of vines at an altitude of around 400 meters above sea level. This was the dawn of Sassicaia.
From 1945 to 1967, Sassicaia, the name of an area within the Tenuta San Guido, remained a strictly private production, reserved for family and close friends. The first vintage to appear on the market was 1968.

The "Mescolavino"

The strategic alliance between the Incisa family and Giacomo Tachis

The Incisa family's kinship with the Antinori family, on the side of the Della Gherardesca, the family from which his wife Clarice came, allowed Mario Incisa to meet the young oenologist Giacomo Tachis. Together they developed the first Bordeaux-style red wine in the history of Bolgheri. From that moment on, the partnership continued for over 40 years. After the death of Tachis in 2016, the winery continued to work in accordance with his precepts and instructions.
Mario Incisa had made good studies, had relationships, both epistolary and direct, with all the great names in French wine culture. His passion for oenology and oenography and his refined taste were his calling card.

Nicolò Incisa della Rocchetta joins the company

The privilege of basing one's profession on passion

In the 1960s, the youngest son, Nicolò, began to work alongside Mario Incisa in managing the family estate. Nicolò Incisa and Giacomo Tachis were almost the same age, sharing a common vision of oenology and similar taste in terms of style. The partnership was strengthened and the production of wine, starting with the first commercial harvest (1968), became more structured and controlled. With the arrival of Nicolò Incisa, passion became a profession. He began to sound out foreign markets, and it was with him that the reputation of Sassicaia was consolidated. The wine was noted for its eclectic personality: it was fine and elegant, determined and complex. It stands out for its finesse and adherence to the terroir and immediately becomes a wine that speaks of the territory, in its many variations, impressions, and complexity.
We are at the dawn of a modern company that Nicolò Incisa, over the years, will govern and consolidate with rare acumen, farsightedness, along with great responsibility.
Giacomo Tachis was Tenuta San Guido's oenological consultant for over 40 years. He has gone down in history as the father of the Italian wine renaissance and still to this day, production is carried out according to the rules he suggested and adopted from the very beginning.
In 1999 Giacomo Tachis, wearing the laurel wreath, received his honorary degree in Agricultural Science and Technology at the University of Pisa, commented:
"I have risen to the top, but I still feel, as they used to say in my country, a mescola-vino. "

The long genesis of Sassicaia

more than thirty years after the first bottled vintage, success arrives and is immediately acclaimed on the international scene

In 1978 was the first success, during a blind tasting with anonymous samples of cabernet-based wines, organised in London by Hugh Johnson for Decanter magazine, where Sassicaia 1972 won first place among 33 wines selected from all over the world.
In the meantime, the cellar was moved to temperature-controlled premises, where steel vats replaced wooden ones for fermentation and the refinement of the wine in barriques was developed and perfected.
Since then, Sassicaia has collected important awards: in both 1985 and 2016 it was awarded 100/100 points by the American wine critic Robert Parker while in 2018 was judged the best wine in the world by Wine Spectator.


Gifted with a great sense of proportion, Nicolò Incisa used to say "I want to be a producer of only one wine, Sassicaia!" But in the mid-nineties, he repented. Merlot had started to arouse great euphoria in national and international palates, and Bolgheri was not immune to its charm- on the contrary, it became one of the most significant producer in the Italian wine scene. Mono varietal wines began to be produced using international grapes and the Merlot frequently accompanied the Cabernet Sauvignon.
Having already sensed this trend in the early nineties, Nicolò Incisa began planting Merlot grapes in the stretch of land that runs along Viale dei Cipressi, between the oratory of San Guido and up the hill, through Podere Alberto.

A new horizon: the birth of Guidalberto and Le Difese

The new millennium welcomed the debut of a new wine, the Guidalberto harvest 2000, a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot.
With the 2002 harvest, Le Difese also arrives, with a component of Sangiovese which, together with Cabernet, underlines its being Tuscan without losing the imprint of the Cabernet grapes, which represents the common thread among the three wines of Tenuta San Guido .

The Bolgheri Sassicaia DOC

An important recognition and a great responsibility

Tenuta San Guido is the only winery to have vineyards suitable for claiming the DOC Bolgheri Sassicaia, a type created as a sub-zone of the DOC Bolgheri back in 1994 and converted to an autonomous DOC in December 2013.

Soils and viticulture

The area used for vines is about 100 hectares, just a small part of the total area of over 2500 hectares

The vineyard are organised in different plots and located in areas chosen for their unique characteristics of exposure and soil composition.
In the Sassicaia microzone there are two distinct areas: the first, foothills, where the vineyards are at an altitude of about 80 metres above sea level and originate in the Lower Middle Pleistocene. The second is hilly, with vineyards located between 250 and 400 metres above sea level and originating in the Lower Cretaceous and Eocene-Paleocene periods.
Vineyards in such diverse areas are an important factor in the complexity of the wines and allow for an optimal selection of grapes depending on the climatic conditions that determine their degree of ripeness and acidity.
The training system is the low spurred cordon, bent at about 40 cm, and the planting patterns are very sparse, to have a low incidence of plants per hectare. The choice of a low spur pruning allows for greater leaf surface area and greater photosynthetic efficiency.

The microclimate

The embrace of the Bolgheri hills theatre

The climate is decisive for the correct and healthy ripening of the grapes. It is influenced by the sea and the hills behind, which protect it from the cold northern winds. If the seasonal trend favours an increase in production, the bunches are thinned out but, as cultural orientation, productivity is contained by dry and green pruning.
Good exposure to the sun's rays and constant mild sea breezes creates a microclimate unfavourable to the development of fungal pests. As these are areas surrounded by woodland, any insect pests of the vines are also controlled by a large cohort of predators, providing a viable alternative to the use of insecticides. Fertilisation, which is exclusively organic, is also limited and balanced, and there is no need to enrich the soil thanks to the complex alternation of soils that make up Tenuta San Guido's agronomic heritage.
Method and People

The San Guido Winery

The gateway to Bolgheri: a building of elegant simplicity

For a long time, Castiglioncello di Bolgheri was used as the cellar for Sassicaia. This was an excellent solution when the few vineyards were planted in the vicinity of the castle. With the development of new vineyards on land scattered around the estate, however, an expansion of the winery became necessary.
The latter could no longer be located at the highest point of the estate, both for reasons of work efficiency and rational timing along with the fact that the vineyards were no longer connected. It was therefore decided in the mid-1970s to locate the winery for the production and refinement of Sassicaia at the entrance of Cypress Avenue.
Method and People

The aging cellar

Half-hidden by vegetation, because of its extreme simplicity, this first Sassicaia cellar was seen as the expression of Nicolò Incisa's company philosophy, which is opposed to any kind of showing-off.
In 2007, next to this building, the new ageing cellar was built, designed by architect Agnese Mazzei. It consists of two low brick bodies connected by a glass and steel half-tower that has both an aesthetic and functional function, where Sassicaia matures for 24 months. This elegant and simple structure, built by recovering the old volumes of the greenhouses that housed gladiolus bulbs, appears quite different from other wine cathedrals. In front of the cellar, a garden all'italiana, with its many varieties of roses, accompanies you to the entrance.
Guidalberto and Le Difese are currently produced in the cellar of the old oil mill along the Bolgherese road.
Method and People

The winemaker’s craft and the thought behind it

The far-sightedness of Marchese Mario Incisa does not stop with the grape blend, it also extends to the vineyard. In fact, he used drastic pruning to obtain a low yield of excellent quality. He also introduced, according to the French custom, barriques for ageing the wine.
Mario Incisa laid down solid foundations in the 1940s that we still observe today. His work is inspired by Bordeaux, based on his agronomy studies at the University of Pisa in the 1920s, his many trips to France, and the teaching he received from the mentors he met along the way. His intuition and foresight, however, are a gift of nature.
Today Tenuta San Guido relies on a technical team assisted by General Manager Carlo Paoli, who is also the production manager, with the support of Nicola Politi for the agronomic part. At their side is a team of technicians motivated by the same passion.
Method and People

The doctrine of listening

In the vineyard as well as in the cellar

The approach to the vineyard is always measured against the needs of the land. In the case of an older vineyard, great results can be achieved in terms of quality responses that younger vineyards are unable to provide. Vineyard management requires a great deal of time and care and is influenced by the seasonality that determines intervention: hoeing, natural elimination of weeds, light work that does not harm the superficial roots, periodic replacement of failures. Fungicides are used to combat powdery mildew and downy mildew only if necessary. Harvesting is carried out manually. Vineyard and countryside management is carried out according to the concepts of sustainability, integration, and conservation, all of which are fundamental to our ethical vision and important prerequisites for dealing responsibly with the well-known problem of climate change.
Method and People

Putting experience into practice

In the cellar as well as in the vineyard

The guidelines are followed as Giacomo Tachis, together with Mario and Nicolò Incisa, had set them up over the years.
Maceration varies according to the vintage but is usually short. We do not use artificial yeasts so as not to alter the personality and terroir of the wine. We strive for balance rather than concentration. Pleasantness, elegance, freshness, sinuous tannins, balance, longevity and territoriality are the objectives we pursue.
Year after year we increase our knowledge, and each vintage is a new adventure. Experience has not changed our ideas but contributes daily to improve our actions. Our aspiration is to produce wines that are an expression of the values of the territory and that respect the style of wine.