Franco Biondi Santi. The gentleman of Brunello, Veronelli Editore, 2005
Kerin O'Keefe combines the story of celebrated wine producer Franco Biondi Santi and the history of one of the world's greatest wines, Brunello di Montalcino. O'Keefe recounts Biondi Santi's life from the time he was a young child and accompanied his father in the vineyards and cellar to today when his Brunello is sought out the world over. In the middle, a succession of struggles, transformations and Franco's unflagging determination to defend the identity of his wine against the dangerous trends towards standardized tastes and globalization which threaten to obliterate the world's greatest wines. The story is enriched with numerous anecdotes, such as when during WWII Franco and his father walled up hundreds of precious bottles of aged Riservas in the cellar before the Front passed through Montalcino because, "Either they'll drink them or steal them". This is the story of a man whose impeccably good taste and refinement have made him one of the symbols of Made in Italy, and of the wine that forever changed Italian viticulture and enology.