~  The large barrel cellar at Tenuta Greppo ~

Since his death in April of 2013, the rumors about the uncertain course of the Biondi Santi family estate, Tenuta Il Greppo, began to swirl.  Passion comes with a cost and with the estate in the hands of Franco’s children, Jacopo and Alessandra, the brother and sister team decided to seek a strategic partnership for the benefit of the estate.  

As helicopters landed at the estate throughout the summer carrying principals from some of the most prestigious names in luxury products to Tenuta Il Greppo,  there was a degree of concern in Montalcino that another premier Italian wine estate would be sold to foreign interests.  

~ Terraced vineyards at Tenuta Il Greppo ~

Finally, this past Sunday,  an official press announcement from Biondi Santi was released.  Signed in Paris just a few days earlier, the French firm  Europeenne de Participations (EPI) , which is a privately owned luxury goods company operated by the Descours family,  will provide an undisclosed strategic capital investment to Tenuta Il Greppo.  The agreement stipulates that current winemaker Jacopo Biondi Santi will remain as winemaker and manager of the estate.   Eventually, the company will be split into three: a production company, a commerical company and a  holding company. 

EPI owns many luxury brands across Europe, including luxury shoe giant J.M. Weston, Chateau La Verriere and the Champagne Houses of Piper Heidsieck and Charles Heidsieck.

At least for now, fans of this prestigious Brunello estate can breathe a collective sigh of relief.  The news was received warmly in Montalcino after several recent foreign investments in renowned Italian wineries have taken place over the last few years.  

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