Already partners in several very successful restaurants, Joe and Lidia Bastianich came together with Chef Mario Batali to form La Mozza in 2000. They were all aware of the enormous potential of the Maremma, and seized the opportunity to create a new winery with a modern mission: To express this terrior to the fullest with new and exciting grape varieties. La Mozza consists of 36 hectares (90 acres) and lies in the Southwest corner of Tuscany’s Maremma, a dozen kilometres from the sea and 45 minutes Southwest of Montalcino. This area is much drier than the fog-draped hills of central Tuscany. The lack of morning mist means the grapes start ripening at sunrise, and are sun-drenched until sunset. Rain is scarce as the Island of Elba off the coast acts as a windbreak, shifting eastbound moisture to the north and south. Here hot-climate varieties like Syrah and Alicante thrive, and the acidic edge of Sangiovese has mutated into Morellino’s lush cherry fruit.