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Donatella’s 2017: a rich year with a scarce harvest

With my best wishes for 2018, I am sharing some pleasant memories of 2017, that has been a really fantastic year, even though the grapes were scarce

New Year at Fattoria del Colle

New Year at Fattoria del Colle

Donatella Cinelli Colombini

2017 ,the year that has just finished, was one with fewer grape clusters but with great commercial successes. The Casato Prime Donne winery in Montalcino Fattoria del Colle in Trequanda sell wine in 37 nations and the wines from our vineyards is just about sufficient to cover all the requests. Actually for some wines like Rosso di Montalcino, Cenerentola DOC Orcia and IGT Drago e le 8 Colombe, we have sold the wines from two vintages finishing all the stock while the Brunello 2012 was rationed so we could reach Christmas. Our increase in sales shows a wonderful + 17% considering that Violante’s sales office had no Riserva to sell.

Cenerentola 2017-2018 New Year's eve at Fattoria del Colle

Cenerentola 2017-2018 New Year’s eve at Fattoria del Colle

This success is clearly also to attribute to the quality of the wines (well done the cellar girls!) and some is due to the vineyards, where a daily care of the plants – a return to old winter pruning systems and the organic regime – have permitted the production of excellent grapes even in vintages, such as the last, where the climate went a bit wild. The 2017 grape harvest was scarce especially at Fattoria del Colle where the soil is sandy and where the wild boar and deer have had a feast. After fencing off the vineyards in Montalcino next to be fenced off will be the vineyards in Trequanda.

The country inn and the restaurant went well too with a + 55% and even better the winery sales that are now a good 15% of the wine business. Read more…

Il Drago e le 8 Colombe is a masterpiece wine

A Supertuscan for those who love Tuscan cuisine but also something more multiethnic, Il Drago e le 8 Colombe is appreciated by the young and by those who love small masterpiece productions

2015 is a 5 star harvest, 2015 is a lucky year because the vineyards remained miraculously unharmed while all around all sort of things were going wrong: in Torrita hailstones as large as tangerines, water bobs flooding the nearby Buonconvento. But in the vineyards small perfect clusters were ripening, more beautiful than we had seen for a long time.

THE NAME

The Il Drago e le 8 Colombe symbolizes the 8 women who work in the winery at Fattoria del Colle –together with Casato Prime Donne in  Montalcino these are the first in Italy with an all female staff- and the only man who can influence the productive choices : Carlo Gardini, husband to Donatella Cinelli Colombini the owner.

dragoTHE SECRET

The Il Drago e le 8 Colombe is a Supertuscan, which means it does not belong to any DOC appellation but is a “masterpiece” wine, a small production  born for the creativity and wine making passion that’s has enabled Donatella Cinelli Colombini to experiment in Trequanda with Sagrantino, variety from the nearby Umbria.

The Sangiovese, Merlot, and Sagrantino grapes used to produce this wine are born in Fattoria del Colle. They are cultivated following the organic regime with great manual care. Harvesting is also done by hand, at different times: firs the Merlot, then the Sangiovese and the Sagrantino for last. Read more…


Dirty glassware at the restaurant: a frequent problem

Residual soap, shoddy washings, dust …these are the most frequents problems with dirty glassware in restaurants , and the reasons why clients flee

By Donatella Cinelli Colombini, Agriturismo, Toscana, Fattoria del Colle

dirty-glassware-at-the restaurant

dirty-glassware-at-the restaurant

 

97% of British clients interviewed by Restaurant Show in London for a survey by the Classeq, declared that they would stop eating immediately if they discovered that they were using dirty glassware.

And the the British are not as fussy as the Japanese! Yet the idea of drinking out of dirty glasses blocks them, and how can one criticize them! The problem is more widespread than one thinks in the Cask beer report it says that one out of three glasses, among those where beer is served, is dirty, and that however 40% of them have defects (opaqueness, ruined rims etc)

dirty-gassware-at-the-restaurant

dirty-gassware-at-the-restaurant

Soap residue , or those of other chemical products left on glasses also by the glass makers can ruin the aroma and the taste of beer and wine.

Sommeliers have often underlined the necessity of “fresh” glasses to be able to offer an excellent experience to clients, and complain that this aspect is often underestimated because of bad washing equipment. To the hygienic problem the other problem is often added, smell from the detergents or of food in the case of dishwashers used for dishes, cutlery as well as for glasses.

Going back to hygiene, it is quite surprising to read the list of “the germiest things in a restaurant” taken from an  ABC News report divulged by Huffington Post Usa and then by the blog  cantello.it . Read more…

A dragon shaped QR code

The Il Drago e le 8 Colombe wine tells its story through a QR Code on the label, containing curiosities in Italian and in English

Il Drago e le 8 Colombe IGT Fattoria del Colle Toscana

Il Drago e le 8 Colombe IGT Fattoria del Colle Toscana

For someone who thinks she knows about wine communication this really is the limit:  Donatella Cinelli Colombini is one of the last to do wine storytelling on the label …. But those who drink her Drago e le 8 Colombe will be able to learn about the strange name chosen for the wine, and the strange blend, by simply scanning the QR code with their mobile phone. A way to discover the Tuscan traits not only in the glass but also through descriptions.

Il Drago e le 8 Colombe comes from Fattoria del Colle in the middle of the oldest and best preserved area of Tuscany and it brings with it aroma of ripe red fruits and the powerful and harmonious taste typical of a hilly territory where the aril is clean and the ripening of the grapes is slow. Typical food in this region grilled beef steak and pecorino cheese, both wonderfully matched with the Il Drago e le 8 Colombe IGT Toscana.

Il Drago e le 8 Colombe IGT Violante Gardini Cinellicolombini Jr

Il Drago e le 8 Colombe IGT Violante Gardini Cinellicolombini Jr

The vineyards are cultivated following the organic regime and by hand as has been done for centuries. In the cellar there are only women. But there is also a dragon this is Carlo Gardini, husband to Donatella Cinelli Colombini the owner, he is one of the initiators of the new experimentations. A game of symbols that say that the Fattoria del Colle winery is feminine not feminist because the great wines have no gender and they are produced and consumed by those who love nature, culture and good things. Read more…


A magical video for the Cenerentola DOC Orcia

The story of a wine becomes a fairytale during the grape harvest, and Cinderella’s shoe takes us to see vineyards, cellars, barrel ageing rooms and then to the final surprise.

Here is the Prince’s page holding a cushion onto which lays a glittery shoe, shiny like the moon. He visits a Sangiovese vineyard, on the hills surrounding Fattoria del Colle, during the harvest, he sees a girl picking grapes and he asks her to try the shoe on. It doesn’t fit.

Then he goes into the fermentation room where the Sangiovese and Foglia Tonda must, in different vats, are changing into wine; the page sees a cellar girl and asks her to try on the shoe. It doesn’t fit.

Another try in the candle lit barrel ageing room, among the barrels and tonneaux, the page finds another cellar girl. She too tries it on but it doesn’t fit. Although in the winery the staff is made up of only women so there is a vast possibility, none of them are right for Cinderella’s shoe.

Finally the page reaches Fattoria del Colle where there is an enormous fireplace in the 16rh century kitchen of the villa. Here he finds a young woman who is sipping a glass of red wine, He asks her to try on the shoe and she turns into a princess. Then the bottle of Cenerentola 2015 appears. The wine that after 15 years from its first harvest has reached an extraordinary level in harmony and personality. This is Cenerentola!

This is the story told in a short video created by Tommaso Dironato, who shows us playfully, with a mixture of fairytale and reality how the Cenerentola wine is born and how it becomes a Princess of international wine making.

MARKETS AND PRIZES

The Cenerentola wine has suffered until it has finally established itself but today it has fans all over the world. It is exported to 15 nations. Now other than the wine lovers, the wine critics also appreciate Cenerentola: it has obtained 90/100 from Robert Parker Wine Advocate and 91/100 from Wine Spectator. Read more…

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