Province of Cagliari
Established: 1960
Owners: Co-operative di Santadi
Winemaker: Giorgio Marrone
Production: 1,700,000 bottles
Hecatres under vine: 600
Viticulture: Conventional

Cantina Santadi, from Sardinia’s southwestern coastal region known as Sulcis, was founded in 1960 as a cooperative of local growers. Under the guidance of Antonello Pilloni, Santadi has become one of Sardinia’s, and Italy’s, finest wineries, with more than 200 growers farming 600 hectares.

In the early 1980’s, Antonello called on Giacomo Tachis to consult for Santadi. Creator of Sassicaia, Tachis would go on to become the man behind Italian wine’s worldwide renaissance. Even after retirement, Tachis  continued to work with his friend Antonello, saying “I’m absolutely passionate about Vermentino and Carignano….there are still parts of Sardinia which I consider virgin land, it’s a spectacular island, especially the south, which is the true soul of the island.”

the Sulcis peninsula is, geographically, Sardinia’s most ancient area, rich in archaeological sites, and offers an astonishing palette of variations and contrasts, with coastal sand dunes, gentle hills and inlets, narrow strips of flatland and inland mountains, rugged cliffs overhanging the seas interspersed with silky-smooth white beaches, pine trees, junipers and vineyards. In these sandy soils, pre-phylloxera vines continue to survive and thrive.

Santadi produces a full suite of Sardinian wines, from Vermentino to Nuragus, Monica and Cannonau, but it is the Carignano vine that they are most famous for. Thought to have been brought by the Spanish, who ruled the island for hundreds of years, Carignano is very productive, late ripening and high in acid with tannins that need taming. But the perfect growing conditions in Sulcis allow the wine to have a velvety richness with softer tannins.

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Vermentino DOC ‘Villa Solais’
Carignano del Sulcis DOC ‘Grotta Rossa’
Carignano del Sulcis DOC Riserva ‘Rocca Rubia’
Carignano del Sulcis DOC ‘Terre Brune’
Latinia IGT 375ml