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Grappa di Cenerentola and the fairytale has a new flavour

Cenerentola Doc Orcia is Violante Gardini’s favourite wine (Cinellicolombini Jr); she has hence created a grappa in small bottles quite apt for young princesses   


CENERENTOLA GRAPPA and shapper bag

<< I am a great romantic and the Cinderella fairytale always made me dream, also the Cenerentola wine is the one I love most, for this reason I have created a young grappa from one grape variety dressing it like a princess, elegant and trendy>> says Violante when talking about her first marketing project for 600 small but very refined bottles of Grappa di Cenerentola.

First of all the grappa:  one must remember that it comes from the distillation of the grape-skins extracted from the vats and pressed, when the fermentation is finished and the wine is racked into another container. Violante has used the Foglia Tonda skins, a local autochthonous variety o grapes from the Siena region used only for the production of the ’Orcia Doc “Cenerentola”. She has chosen the   “Distillerie Alboni Srl” for the distillation, a small artisanal workshop in Mensanello, near Colle Val d’Elsa, so quite close and where the grape skins reach still warm.   The facility uses the discontinuous system with vapour from two boilers and a still where everything is done manually and the process is very long.




<<I only had 120 litres of grappa but it was precisely for this reason, the exceptional quality  of this brandy distilled product obtained from a rare and old grape variety, Foglia Tonda, of which  Fattoria del Colle is the major producer, that I had the idea of a challenge. A new type of packaging: a very small 20 c bottle, like perfume, pace in a shiny black mini-shopper-bag, Like those we young women use to go to the beach with our friends>> Read more…

2015 a Dream of a Harvest

This was a real triumph, a wonderful harvest. In all my life I have never seen anything similar; all the clusters were perfect, ripe, small and perfectly sound, from the first to the last.

Harvest 2015 Brunello Donatella Cinelli Colombini

Harvest 2015 Brunello Donatella Cinelli Colombini

In the Brunello region this harvest beats even the great 2010 vintage, and news coming from the rest of Italy is good too.

2015 Harvest - Assoenologi data

2015 Harvest – Assoenologi data

To be on the safe side I wrote little about the 2015 harvest. I kept my fingers crossed and I waited until all the grapes had reached the cellar. It was over in a flash: 7-9 September merlot, 21 -30 September Sangiovese, Foglia Tonda and Sagrantino. A big team of 18 youngsters went up and down the vine rows scissors in hand. Red baskets filling the bins ready to be taken to the cellar at Casato Prime Donne and Fattoria del Colle. Also quick, so quick that Barbara the cellar master had trouble keeping up with grapes arriving on the sorting table. A harvest amid music, many pickers had on headphones as if they were jogging. Maybe this is what accelerated the rhythm. This is something worth thinking about, even though the music isolates and stops the chitchat full of jokes, taking the Mick and camaraderie which for centuries has been the life of grape-picking.

1.600 quintals 160 tons of grapes, not even that much. In my 33 hectares an average of 46 quintals per hectare, so 4,6 tons. Read more…

Will 2012 be Cenerentola’s Prince Charming?

The top wine at Fattoria del Colle from a 5 star vintage, arrives full of elegant lushness just like a real princess form the DOC Orcia

The 2012 harvest was the scarcest harvest ever at Fattoria del Colle. Few clusters, small but of high quality that were practically all used or the most important wines:

Cenerentola 2012  Orcia Doc

Cenerentola 2012 Orcia Doc

Cenerentola DOC Orcia and the Il Drago e le 8 Colombe IGT.

2012 was an odd year; the winter was dry regardless of the heavy snowfalls and the very hot summer, without rain, until September. To help the vines put up with the hydro stress the grapes were which were already scarce where diminished through pruning. In the end in the

2012 must

2012 must

Fattoria del Colle vineyards there was less than half the usual amount of grapes, but with  anthocyanins and tannins – the noble substances – so abundant and soluble to give the wine a an opulent and rewarding lushness. Cenerentola 2012 is a very pleasant young wine and it will age for decades

This wine is made with grapes from two local varieties from Tuscany, Sangiovese and Foglia Tonda. This latter is an old variety that was abandoned about a century ago when the farmers we too poor to wan to thin out the grapes, and wanted to leave them all on the vine, but at harvest they were not all ripe. Thanks to Vitarium in the Regione Toscana, who supplied us with the cuttings for the first grafting, for the past 15 years we have cultivated two vineyards wog Foglia Tonda and have learned to love and emphasize this variety. Its wines are powerful and apt to be united with Sangiovese which on the other hand is a champion in elegance. Read more…

Cenerentola 2010, will the Prince Charming fall in love?

2010, the perfect grape harvest, one that all wine makers dream about. Cenerentola, the flagship wine for Fattoria del Colle, Orcia Doc

Cenerentola 2010 chestnuts and Foglia Tonda

Cenerentola 2010 chestnuts and Foglia Tonda

It comes from the Sangiovese and Foglia Tonda vineyards at 400 metres above sea level in a ventilated position and well exposed to the sun. Hand picked grapes which are chosen once arrived in the cellar, where the selection table allows one to choose only the best grapes.

In the Fattoria del Colle winery the Cenerentola wine is aged in 500-700 litre tonneaux and in small French oak casks for one year. It is a satisfying wine, harmonious, powerful and long lasting because, the great vintages have quite the ability to reach soon very high quality levels and to maintain them for decades

A wine with solely Tuscan characteristics because it contains two traditionally old varieties: the elegant Sangiovese king of the Italian vineyard and the powerful Foglia Tonda which originates in the southern Siena area, which Fattoria del Colle has emphasized after nearly one century of disuse.

So finally Cenerentola (Cinderella) is about to become a princess. This wine owes its name to the position of the DOC Orcia wine region, born in 2000, between the Vino Nobile di Montepulciano and the Brunello di Montalcino wine areas. Practically a challenge for the new wine appellation towards the two more famous and important “sisters”. But will it be the 2010 vintage that the Prince Charming will fall in love with?

Type: dry red

Autumn Orcia vineyard Fattoria del Colle

Autumn Orcia vineyard Fattoria del Colle

Production area: Toscana, Trequanda, Fattoria del Colle vineyards.
Vintage characteristics: Very rainy winter and spring, in May there were 22 days of rain. Very hot summer, especially in July. Colouring of the grapes was very slow especially for the Foglia Tonda whose vines were still in vegetation at harvest time. Last phase of the vegetative cycle of the vine was decidedly accelerated.

Grape types: 65% Sangiovese (Brunello), 35% Foglia Tonda.
Grape harvest: The grapes were hand picked and reached the winery quickly in their crates. Excellent poliphenolic extraction, the grape seeds were totally lignified.
Vinification: fermentation in stainless steel temperature controlled vats.
Ageing: 12 months in 5-7 hl tonneaux and in small casks.

Colour: intense, brilliant ruby red
Aroma: fine, rich and intense, and complex.Net hints of ripe red fruits and spices.

 Cenerentola Doc Orcia- Donatella Cinelli Colombini

Cenerentola Doc Orcia- Donatella Cinelli Colombini

Taste: full, intense, harmonious and long lasting. Soft tannins in a structure apt for long ageing.
Serve with: may be served with important meats and aged cheeses.
Way of serving: Serve at room temperature (18-20 °C) in crystal balloon shaped wine goblets.
Home ageing: 10-20 years. Keep the bottles lying down in a cool dark place


The most important wine word today is “autochthonous”

  • Published in Forum

Indigenous, that is the key element in wine according to Matt Kramer editorialist for Wine Spectator

Read for you by Donatella Cinelli Colombini



Since 1985 Kramer writes regularly for the most influential wine magazine in the world and has an analytical ability and a knowledge regarding wines which are extraordinary. Listening to his opinions is consequently a must for those who want to understand where the wind blows for wine. In his article dated June 30th he began with this phrase <<Do you think that at this moment the most important word in wine is “natural”? Or “authentic” Or better still “commercial” None of these. The most important word in wine today is “autochthonous ” (indigenous).>> With his usual understandable explanation he gets across that all that happens in the Vineyard and the cellar is important but not fundamental, not as much as the 3 key elements: microclimate, soil, grape variety. No matter how hard the producer may try to characterize his Cabernet Sauvignon, it will always remain a Cabernet Sauvignon. But, what is the identity or indigenous character as Kramer calls it? Read more…

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