2017 vintage featuring artwork by Famed Artist and Sommelier Valentino Monticello
Panzano in Chianti, Tuscany (Italy) – October 12th, 2021 – Renowned Tuscan producer Il Molino di Grace from Panzano in Chianti, is pleased to announce the release of the 2017 vintage of the IGT Toscana “Gratius” whose commemorative label entitled ‘Bouquet of Grace’ is a piece of art by the late Artist Valentino Monticello, famed Sommelier of Harry’s Bar in London.
The unique marriage between wine and art was one of the founding principles around which Frank Grace founded the winery celebration of wine and culture with sculptures adorning the vineyards and art canvassing the cellar. Today 23 unique pieces created by Sommelier and Artist Valentino Monticello are on display at Il Molino di Grace, including the “Wine as Art” Collection and the series “The Life of Bacchus”.
Valentino Monticello was an Italian sommelier who managed prestigious cellars at some of London’s most iconic private dining clubs such as Harry’s Bar and Club 21; but he was also an artist that fused his passion for mythology, opera and wine translating it into a distinctive style of fine art and creating a uniquely signature craft. Monticello’s artwork exclusively uses wine labels as its medium and its context. Every detail of each piece carefully hand cut from different labels capturing wine and regions from all over the world. His work has been showcased and celebrated in galleries and museums across Europe including the National Gallery in London and the Uffizi Gallery in Florence. Valentino worked until 2014 when he sadly passed away.
The special relationship between the Grace Family and Valentino Monticello began in the 1980s in London when Frank and Valentino became fast friends after meeting at Harry’s Bar. Valentino was the one who conceived the name ‘Gratius’ for Il Molino di Grace’s signature single vineyard Super Tuscan, a wholly indigenous Tuscan blend of Sangiovese, Canaiolo and Colorino grapes. Gratius is from the Latin word gratus, meaning thankful which captures the gratitude of the Grace family for being the current stewards of this enchanting, fruitful land.
“My family is proud to honor Valentino Monticello’s timeless legacy and truly unique art-form with the commemorative 2017 Gratius label – the 20th vintage of this authentic wine he originally named. The label features artwork that Monticello created for his winemaking friend and fellow dreamer Frank Grace,” said Daniel Grace, son of Frank and Director of the winery.
The 2017 Gratius, along with the full Il Molino di Grace wine portfolio (Chianti Classico, Chianti Classico Riserva, Chianti Classico Gran Selezione, Igt Il Volano), are widely available worldwide including USA, Canada, UK and China.
ABOUT IL MOLINO DI GRACE
Set in the hills of Panzano in Chianti, in the hearth of Tuscany, Il Molino was founded and built in 1997 by American Frank Grace and is now run by his son Daniel. Il Molino di Grace is a proud member and leader of the Panzano Wine Producers Association – the first organic wine district in Italy to have 100% organic and biodynamic wineries. Il Molino is also a flag bearer of the recently established, quality benchmark defining regional cru of ‘Gran Selezione’ which designates the top 3% of most authentically elegant Chianti Classico wines of the region. The Grace family set out to be true stewards of these steep fruitful hills, focusing on producing the finest, cleanest, and most authentic expression of 100% Sangiovese Chianti Classico and indigenous Super Tuscan wines in partnership with world-renowned oenologist and winemaker Franco Bernabei. For more information, please visit www.ilmolinodigrace.it