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Where does Donatella and Violante’s dove fly?

A new video for the  Cinelli Colombini winery but no change in the protagonist, Violante Gardini, together with a dove that flies through the Brunello and Orcia vines


This year too our estate video is out of the ordinary! Two and a half minutes to talk about the  all female staffed estates  belonging to Donatella, Casato Prime Donne in Montalcino and Fattoria del Colle in southern  Chianti, a quick rhythm of images of the vines, the barrels, the vats, the grapes and bottles….with a lively rhythmical music , like a music box. The novelty, for the very traditional Italian world of is the presence of a cartoon dove that comes out of the Brunello “IOsonoDONATELLA” label and accompanies us in the discovery of the first wineries in Italy to be staffed by only women.

The- doves- at-Casato-Prime-Donne

The- dove-s at-Casato-Prime-Donne

It flies along the vines with curiosity during the harvest, it goes into the fermentation hall where the bare concrete truncated cone shake vats are decorated with images, real, and painted, of Montalcino, it peeps in at the wine tasting organized for the  Brunello Prime Donne with the Master of Wine Rosemary George, the sommelier Daniela Scrobogna and the wine shop owner Astrid Schwarz who blind taste while the wine maker Valerie Lavigne  and the cellar master Barbara Magnani try to combine the wine from different barrels looking for the perfect balance. Read more…

Donatella Cinelli Colombini Brunello Prime Donne 2011

Brunello Prime Donne was born as a challenge when the Wine Guides only had men tasters and it has become the first red wine dedicated to women.

Brunello di Montalcino Prime Donne 2011

Brunello di Montalcino Prime Donne 2011

In 1998 when Donatella Cinelli Colombini had just received from her parents Casato Prime Donne in Montalcino and Fattoria del Colle in southern Chianti. Two properties to renovate so as to create a new estate. Lots of investments to be done but also a small,l but also very important, help to begin with: some small quantities of winedestined to become Brunello from the vintages 1993-1997. The search for a cellar master to take care of the wines brought usto chooses a female “head of the cellar” also to the choice of having an all female staff in the cellar, and also to the decision to make the first great red wine apt for a long ageing dedicated to women consumers, the Brunello Prime Donne. Practically a provocation in an era when the guide books for wine had only panels of male tasters.

Prime Donne - Brunello tasting

Prime Donne – Brunello tasting

During the years the Brunello Prime Donne has obtained more and more consent from the international wine press and from the consumers (mostly men). Then last year it was submerged by prizes.

The Brunello “Prime Donne “ is a selection, so it is chosen from all the wine produced from the same vintage. The panel of tasters chooses which wine will become Prime Donne. And in which barrels it must be aged. The panel is made up of 4 very expert lady wine tasters, and they meet once or twice a year. They are the Italo-American Pr Marina Thompson, the German wine shop owner Astrid Schwarz, and one of the best Italian sommeliers Daniela Scrobogna to whom during 2015 we have added the English Master of wine Rosemary George to substitute Maureen Ashley. Read more…

Wine Spectator gives my Brunello Prime Donne 2010 96/100

It is called Insider and it is an email that reports the best ratings on Wine Spectator. Every winery in the world wants to see its wines rated there. My Brunello has been

Brunello PrimeDonne 2010 Wine Spectator

Brunello PrimeDonne 2010 Wine Spectator

By Donatella Cinelli Colombini

How exciting! Only 20 Brunello in the Insider and only 4 in the “hot wines”. Mine is in second position with a splendid rating of 96/100

The ratings by the most read and most authoritative American wine magazine start their journey towards the podium starting from a minimum of  50-74 for the not recommendable wines, then there are the mediocre ones (75-79), the good ones (80-84) the very good ones (85-89). And finally the champions (90-94) and the summit or rather, the classical wines rated between 95 and 100 points.

So, our Brunello Prime Donne 2010 is a vino CLASSICO that would mean an icon such as the works by Raffaello, Mozart, Petrarca … Maybe I’m being a bit presumptuous with these comparisons? It must be aid though that the search for harmony does countersign all my wines but especially the Brunello and this does make the word “Classic” quite apt. Read more…

Recent wine travels for Violante, a woman with a suitcase

She seems fragile but she has real stamina. In the past month she has visited New York, Philadelphia, Denver, Minneapolis, 4 days home and then Hong Kong  and Shanghai


Violante's Usa mission in october 2014

Violante's Usa mission in october 2014

Violante Gardini the Cinellicolombini Jr, always has trips that begin with an adventure: to go to the US  they cancelled her flight but she was able nevertheless to get to the wine tasting in Washington on time going via Brussels . To go to China her car’s clutch broke on the way to Rome.  A journey with mechanical noises and lots of frights. When she got to Fiumicino she was so upset that the check in staff was so sorry for her that they gave her a super comfy seat on the plane

Her texts from abroad are hilarious, here’s one of them <<how much do you have to walk to sell wine? My feet are exhausted!…. This first week on work, running after planes, taxis and

Violante's new shoes

Violante's new shoes

most of all time, has finally finished >> . Violante describes a different New York than what she has seen the last few years, more beautiful and with more positive energy. People have more faith in the future and want to spend more.
<<Lots of overweight people, but less than usual. Maybe  Michelle Obama’s campaign regarding exercise and eating vegetables has worked. There are less McDonald’s, where have they disappeared to?>> <<It is said that there are BIO stores everywhere, but I didn’t see any, however all that is organic is liked>>.
<<The Rosso di Montalcino was fantastically successful, everyone loves it and we placed it in 2/3restaurants to be served also by the glass. Someone is surprised by its freshness, how delicate it is and sweet and pleasant, others just fall in love with it straight away. >>
Violante finds time also for friends and shopping  <<Tomorrow Maria will come to the city, she is a young wine producer from Puglia who is doing work experience for a few month with an importer just out of the city. She will come to NY for the weekend so we can spend some time together, fantastic!>> The result of this shopping is a pair of really funny pink shoes. For someone always dressed in black, brown and blue this has been a really revolutionary choice!

Read more…

90/100 to Brunello Prime Donne by Tanzer alias Ian D’Agata

His name is Stephen Tanzer but in Italy we read it Ian d’Agata, he is the autochthonous variety paladin who tastes wine for International Wine Cellar

By Donatella Cinelli Colombini

Ian d'Agata

the wine critic Ian D'Agata

90/100 is the rating given to Brunello Prime Donne 2008 by a magazine known for its strict judgments, is consequently a fantastic result. Tanzer, since 1985, is the direct rival of Wine Advocate who combats their fiery prose with a most composed stile, with however the same type of rigour. Among the major wine critics, Tanzer is the one who is closest to the consumer; this has been demonstrated by the comparison of judgements on Cellar tracker, the web site where every wine lover can express their opinion.
In Italy Tanzer has a young and very expert collaborator: Ian d’Agata the autochthonous variety paladin, who is at this moment writing a monumental work of art on them. But that is not all, Ian writes for the major British wine magazine “Decanter” and, believe it or not, for “Figaro” . He also teaches. But not in the university of the remotest place in the world, but in the New York University. In other words there is no prestige missing here. Regarding Montalcino he is one of those who is all for the division of the Brunelloterritory

Brunello Prime Donne, Sara shows the rating

Brunello Prime Donne 2008

in zones, so as to put emphasis on the diversity of the product. It is not a rating, says Ian d’Agata because Pauillac and Margaux are different but both produce excellent wines.

It is he who describes the Brunello 2008 Prime Donne with these words <<Good bright full red. More scented and high toned than the basic 2008 release, offering dark red cherry, mint and floral elements; a note of chocolate-covered dry raspberry emerged with air. Fine-grained and floral, with a light touch and attractive inner-mouth perfume to its red cherry flavour .Finishes with substantial dusty tannins. This is likely to age well>>

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