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New Year’s Eve 2020 tasting Brunello in the Tuscan countryside

At Fattoria del Colle, the New Year’s Eve 2020 holidays full of experiences for foodies, wine lovers and lovers of peace and Tuscan traditions

From 26 December 26th till January 6th, Fattoria del Colle, in the south of Chianti, offers a program of daily animations able to introduce visitors to the most authentic and ancient Tuscan tradition. There will be a visit to the wineries of Brunello with a special musical accompaniment, the cooking lesson on Sienese Christmas sweets such as panforte and ricciarelli held by a pastry chef, themed dinners with 3 dishes, the experience “oenologist for one day” led by a sommelier, the guided tour of the historical parts of Fattoria del Colle with itinerant tasting, tasting of the new olive oil …. Each initiative is tailormade to offer knowledge and fun to both great wine lovers and simple lovers of the countryside and views.
For the detailed program of the activities, the prices and to book click here.


Fattoria del Colle was built by the ancestors of the present owner in 1592 and has been preserved miraculously intact over the centuries. There is the villa with the ancient kitchen, the room of the Grand Duke of Tuscany and the underground now full of barrels, there is the Chapel of San Clemente and all around parks, olive groves, vineyards and truffle reserves. Also the transformation of the ancient village of peasants into tourist residences was made without altering the original characteristics preserving even the ancient floors, the rooms are furnished with authentic local antiques.
In Fattoria del Colle there are a restaurant and the banquet hall, the cooking school and the relaxation area for the natural wellness equipped with Turkish bath, sauna, jacuzzi, room for couples massages and wine therapy.



Future wine is threatened by falling consumption and taxes while opportunities are emerging markets, online sales and wine tourism but focus on packaging

Di Donatella Cinelli Colombini

I take up a beautiful article by Fabio Piccoli as a conclusion of his participation in the “Global Wine Industry Outlook 2025” by Wine Intelligence. The super British agency of analysis on wine, has called 300 professionals of all the production chain (producers, marketing experts, importers, traditional and online distributors, GDO and HORECA operators, trade associations and institutional representatives) from 52 countries around the world to map enology in the next five years. The outcome is only partly predictable because, as in any self-respecting large forum, confirmation of known data is associated with something new and a new interpretation of old information.


Both Wine Intelligence and Fabio Piccoli from WineMeridian underline the importance of the contribution of an Australian marketing manager who summarizes in simple words a new very complicated horizon



“There are more and more peo

ple involved in wine, but it is no longer a question of loyalty to a particular brand; instead, there is a tendency to try many different styles. This makes it difficult for wineries to distinguish themselves, given the impressive amount of varieties that consumers can choose”. As is now well known, wine and food have replaced clothing as tools used by consumers to represent themselves and communicate to their community. The choice of a particular bottle therefore depends on the values it brings in: luxury, attention to pairing, ability to represent certain cultures, respect for the environment, ethical choices in favour of people, of the territory, animals … In front of customers who are less and less loyal and more experimentalist, it becomes even more necessary to make the producer’s choices perceivable, those that distinguish its bottles in the immense international offer and make them preferred by consumers who share the same values.

The comment by Fabio Piccoli is lapidary and fully shareable “businesses are and will be increasingly obliged to identify tools to stand out>>.


Italian sommelier great victories and great international defeats

Matteo Montone be



st young sommelier in the world 2019 and Italian debacle at the sommelier team world championships ranked least


Di Donatella Cinelli Colombini

The facts are as follows: on October 12th the seventh edition of the sommelier team competition was held in the Chambord Castle in France with the participation of teams coming from 27 nations of the world and the Italian team, for the second year a row, came in last.



On October 18th  in London the Italian Matteo Montone won the world title chaîne des Rôtisseurs young sommelier of the year racing under the British flag.



Two events almost concurrent but with opposite result make us reflect on the skills of sommeliers of the Italian nursery. Evidently natural talent is not lacking and the training grounds are good. In fact, traveling around the world, it is easy to find fellow countrymen who take care of the wine service in the most important clubs of Oslo, London, Toronto… or champions like Paolo Basso who won the title of best sommelier in the world  ASI  in 2013 competing for Switzerland. But the point is, why do our sommeliers only spread their wings and fly high when they go abroad? The case of Matteo Montone is exemplary, he was born in Milan and became sommelier in Italy in 2012 but the following year he left for Great Britain. In 2015 he finished seventh in the race for best Italian sommelier.
Commenting on the competition for the best young sommelier in the world The drinks Business notes that in the last 10 years the wine service professionals operating in the UK have always won first or second place. This year the second was Jonathan Eichholz from the USA followed by the Australian Andres Aragon in third place.

vino-in lattina- Larkin, Larkan White, Napa Valley, California, USA, 2017

Wine in a can: expensive but practical, recyclable and good

Canned wine costs as much or more then the bottles, had a boom in sales in USA and UK, is more ecological and surprisingly, in some cases, is very good.

vino-in lattina- Larkin, Larkan White, Napa Valley, California, USA, 2017

Di Donatella Cinelli Colombini


In the USA canned wine is growing: retail sales amount to 93 million dollars and already last year Forbes estimated the potential of this segment in 3.3 billion. The impressive thing is the proliferation of producers of canned wine – wine in cans, in June 2018  were 125 now are 350 with 900 different lines. What people like is the practicality and the fact of having a format typical of certain situations such as festivals or trips where you take everything with you in your backpack and then eat on boat or in a picnic.

This opinion w

vino-in lattina- Larkin, Larkan White, Napa Valley, California, USA, 2017

vino-in lattina- Larkin, Larkan White, Napa Valley, California, USA, 2017

as underlined by a Sopexa study according to which 40% of US consumers prefer alternative containers to the bottle because they do not break, they are more ecological and easier to store. The rebirth of canned wine is described by Professor Robert L. Williams, Professor of marketing at the University of Pennsylvania who in recent years has studied food and wine tourism as a tool for the economic development of the less developed territories.

vino-in-lattina-Ferdinand, Ferdinand, Lodi, California, USA, 2017


The success of wine in can does not concern Italy where this type has never had a great diffusion and remains anchored to the image of Giacobazzi, the winery of Modena, which in 1978 asked the Ministry for permission to package wine in containers other than glass. The authorization, granted in 1982, opened the door to a whole series of new packaging such as tetrapack, PET and of course the can. The amazing thing about Professor Williams’ study is that canned wine is consumed not only by alternative young people but also by wine lovers. Infact also some excellent names produce canned wines as is the case of the director Francis Ford Coppola and his “Sofia” sparkling Blanc de blancs.

vino-in-lattina-Ferdinand, Ferdinand, Lodi, California, USA, 2017

vino-in-lattina-Ferdinand, Ferdinand, Lodi, California, USA, 2017



Six wines over 90/100 points on Wine Advocate/Robert Parker

Donatella Cinelli Colombini celebrates the ratings obtained by Brunello, Doc Orcia, Igt Toscana, Passito and Vin Santo from Robert Parker – Wine Advocate

Positive reviews are always welcome but when they come from Robert Parker they are even more pleasing because the assessments in cents of the magazine created in 1978 by the lawyer of Baltimore, are accepted as authoritative worldwide and influence Canadian monopolies as well as major buyers. For this reason having a rating above 90/100 from Wine Advcate Robert Parker for six wines in a single vintage is an exciting and very important thing. Donatella Cinelli Colombini jumps with joy!
Among the wines with stellar scores are the two Brunello di Montalcino issued this year (vintage 2014 and reserve 2013), the Vin Santo and the Passito that score the highest marks with great joy of Donatella’s husband, Carlo Gardini, true maker of these wines together with the cellar master Barbara Magnani. But there are also the two main labels of Fattoria del Colle: Doc Orcia Cenerentola and l’IGT Toscana Il Drago and the 8 doves.


A result that rewards the great work done in the vineyards, grown in an organic and very manual way, but also the choice to aim at medium and large oak barrels made in small workshops. They are chosen each year in 5 tonnelleries according to the characteristics of the harvest with a tailor made criterion–almost nineteenth century style.


Tourism for lovers in Tuscany.

Road of the kiss, the tree of love, truffle, panforte, Granduca apartment: many little ingredients of tourism  for lovers in the most beautiful countryside in Tuscany.South of Tuscany is the ideal[caption id="attachment_55121" align="alignleft" width="300"] Turismo-da-innamorati-Via-del-Bacio[/caption]place for a couple’s trip. There are the most romantic places to take selfies, aphrodisiac food that has been used for centuries to rekindle passion and old rituals to swear eternal love. Below you’ll find places and dates for tourism in love in Tuscany.TOURISM FOR LOVERS : SELFIE SPOTSThe top places for romantic selfies are in Pienza (30km from Fattoria del Colle) in Via del Bacio ( road of the kiss) and Via dell’Amore (road of love). Between the stone walls of the city created by Pope Pius II at the end of the fifteenth century, it feels like been on the set of the tv...


Paola Gorelli’s pottery to put history on your table.

At Toscana Lovers the artist Paola Gorelli proposes pottery inspired by the typical sienese ones from twelve and thirteen century, just like a gothic dream that never ended.



di Donatella Cinelli Colombini

The gothic pottery that are preserved in the museums of Siena and Montalcino tell about a rich and elegant past. In the thirteen and fourteen century the city of the Palio was the financial centre of the part of Europe that   was connected  by the Via Francigena.


The reproductions of Sienese medieval pottery made by Paola Gorelli are true to the original also in the technique of execution because they are turned and painted by hand by an artist that studied the technique thoroughly, like in the artisan shops of eight hundred years ago. Every piece is slightly different from the other so each one is unique, a fragment of a real tradition.
The Toscana lovers shops in Siena, Bagno Vignoni and Cortona offer the new collection of pottery by Paola Gorelli that painted gothic motives on daily use objects like penholders, tiles and coasters.


Heroic Vineyards: very high or very old

Finally we have a law that protects heroic vine growing , those  historical vineyards attached to the  sides of the mountains.

Di Donatella Cinelli Colombini

Wich are the vineyards that can be considered heroic? Those that give more work than grapes, those that have great landscape, social and historical value but are not very profitable.

This vineyards will probably be abandoned when the old people that cultivate them out of passion will die. For this reason a decree that recognises the value of heroic vine growing and economically supports it’s essential for  its own survival.


In Switzerland I saw vineyards so steep and so tiny that they don’t even allow any sort of mechanization . When they told me that the treatments need to be done with an helicopter and so all the producers have to decide together  for organic or conventional cultivation I realized what this meant economically and socially. Then they told me that the government helps heroic vine growing with financial incentives . A strategy that avoided the abandonment of the vineyards, protected the landscape and increased the quality of swiss wines .


Mantovana with pine nuts from Montalcino between tradition and innovation

At Fattoria del Colle the pastry chef Patrizia Cenni and the Chef Giovanni Rallo created a cake that tells the story of the tradition of mantovana from Montalcino.


Di Donatella Cinelli Colombini

In Montalcino Mantovana is a typical cake and is made only with pine nuts without almonds. It is my daughter Violante Gardini favorite cake and it was hard to make here accept this new version since she has childhood memories linked to this recipe.

Patrizia and Giovanni created  a dessert that is completely new but able to show that Tuscan food culture is capable of renovating itself respecting the tradition.




Giovanni Rallo invented a semifreddo with mantovana ingredients. On top of it are putted traditional mantovana bits garnished with a sprig of thyme. The result is awesome from a gastronomic point of view, because the balance of flavors is perfect and and also from cultural point of view since it respects the tradition.

Below you will find the recipe for the traditional mantovana just like the one made by Patrizia Cenni. For Giovanni Rallo’s semifreddo, recently created, you’l have to come to Fattoria del Colle and try it since it is still a secret.

The best wine to pair with this wonderful dessert is our Passito 2017 di Donatella Cinelli Colombini that lately received 94/100 points from the prestigious Wine Advocate-Robert Parker.







October 9th the super harvest 2019 is over

Chronicle of a marvellous harvest at Casato Prime Donne in Montalcino and Fattoria del Colle in Trequanda. How the Super Brunello 2019 was born.

Di Donatella Cinelli Colombini

This will be remembered as the harvest of the perfect and indestructible Sangiovese because the grapes arrived in the cellar in perfect conditions, without mould, in spite of the two storms that arrived at the end of September and on October the 2nd when it almost hailed.



“It looks like Cabernet” said the enologist Valerie Lavigne observing the tiny berries, when she came to decide the harvest’s schedule. And she was right because Sangiovese behaved just like the famous French grape. The colour extraction was immediate and intense, the bunches had no mould despite the rain. Perfection! Never seen an harvest like this!

Vendemmia-2019-Sangiovese -con-due-giorni-di-vinificazione

Vendemmia-2019-Sangiovese -con-due-giorni-di-vinificazione

The vines remained green and luxuriant until the day of the harvest, just like the famous vintage 2010, there were a lot of very high quality grapes.

Now we know that great harvest come from rainy winters or springs that allow the soil to accumulate water and very hot summers interrupted by brief storms. The milder climate of the last years increased the quality potential of Sangiovese and Brunello.

This harvest lasted a month, to pick each vineyard at the perfect moment, with no rush, with extreme selections that required to harvest the same vineyard three times. The choice of separating all the best grapes without mixing bunches with different ripeness levels required a lot of extra work.


November, white truffle in Tuscany, gourmet tourism.

Do you like white truffle? Come at Fattoria del Colle to discover more about the Crete senesi kind: how to find them, how to cook them and mostly how to eat them.

White truffle and fine Tuscan red wines, a full immersion in culinary pleasures surrounded by the most beautiful and intact countryside in the world.


Three different appointment: the weekends of the 1st-3rd November and the following 8th-10th and 15th-17th during which at San Giovanni d’Asso castle in the municipality of Montalcino( 10km away from our farm) you will find food stands and artistic craftsmanship.


The schedule is dense, captivating and it goes from romantic dinners truffle based to wine tasting in our Brunello and Orcia cellars.

Your home for this delicious weekends will be Fattoria del Colle: an authentic Tuscan farm composed by a 16th cTartufo-bianco-delle-Crete-Senesientury Villa and chapel and nice farm houses transformed in agriturism.

6 wines rated more than 90/100 by Wine Advocate-Robert Parker

Donatella Cinelli Colombini celebrates the ratings obtained with her Brunello, Doc Orcia, Igt Toscana, Passito and Vin Santo through Robert Parker – Wine Advocate


The positive ratings are always a pleasure but when they come from Robert Parker they are even more appreciated, because these evaluations out of one hundred from the wine magazine created in 1978 by the lawyer from Baltimora, are accepted as influential all over the world and have an effect on the Canadian monopolies  and the large buyers

For this reason receiving from  Wine Advocate Robert Parker a rating over 90/100 on 6 wines during the same year is something that brings great enthusiasm and joy. Donatella Cinelli Colombini is ecstatic!

Among these wines with stellar ratings are two Brunello di Montalcino just out this year (2014 and Riserva 2013), the Vin Santo and the Passito , that get the highest points, with great satisfaction of Donatella’s husband,  Carlo Gardini, true creator of these wines together with the cellar master Barbara Magnani. But there are also two of the main labels of Fattoria del Colle: the Doc Orcia Cenerentola and the IGT Toscana Il Drago e le 8 Colombe.

A result that is a reward for the great work done in the vineyards, cultivated manually and according to the organic regime, but also thanks to the choice of medium and large oak barrels created by small workshops. Every year 5 tonnellerie are chosen according to the characteristics of the harvest with a tailor made approach, like in the 19th century.

Passito IGT Toscana by Donatella and Carlo

The Passito 2017 from Fattoria del Colle is a rare sweet wine, produced in only 300 375cl bottles. Something that is really exclusive and with an extraordinary personality


Traminer-grapes-Fattoria-del-Colle-Passito-Barbara- Magnani

Passito is a rare wine, only 300 375Cl bottles. Something exclusive and hand crafted born from Carlo’s (husband to Donatella Cinelli Colombini) passion for sweet wines, and also that of Barbara Magnani, wine maker, who dedicate daily care and attention to this  small sweet masterpiece


The grapes are from the vineyard that surrounds the chapel at Fattoria del Colle, planted around 1970 with a variety typical of the North of Italy, that however at 404 meters above sea level, facing east, where it expresses itself very well in Tuscany too. In that area the soil is deep, well drained and of new quaternary origin, characterized by limestone also in conglomerate form

In 2017 the hot summer and a real invasion of wild boar drastically reduced the grapes and the few cluster of Traminer were transformed into Passito

130 litres were produced with manual care in the vineyard ad in the cellar, and thanks to this craftsmanship the wine reaches extraordinary quality levels and a distinctive personality.


Type: white, sweet, aromatic.

Production area: Tuscany, Fattoria del Colle, Sanchimento vineyard.

Classification: IGT Toscana

Vintage characteristics:  mild winter, very cold spring, summer without rainfall and with very high temperatures even during the night.

Grape variety: Aromatic Traminer

Grape harvest: August 21st with manual harvest and careful choosing of the grapes. The grapes reached the cellar in 5 kg crates.

Drying out of the grapes:  took place in the sun for a whole month.

Vinification: after the de-stemming, the grapes were pressed and transferred to the stainless steel vats, the temperature was maintained at about 18/20°C and selected yeasts were inoculated. During this period some short open air pumping overs took place so as to favour the fermentation processes.

Quantity produced: 300 bottles

Rosso di Montalcino 2017 by Donatella

A powerful Sangiovese , extremely pleasant , that in the  Rosso di Montalcino expresses at its best the characters of a hot years such as 2017 and the extraordinary Brunello terroir


2017 in the vineyards is explained in the words of the Divina Commedia by Dante << guarda il calor del sol che si fa vino>> (Canto 25 of Purgatory). Poetic words that describe a very hot summer where the vines suffered for the draught for month and the grape growers tilled the land to impede that the soil hardened.

A vintage, 2017, that expresses itself at its best in young wines, such as the Rosso di Montalcino, and has among its strong points the Mediterranean vigour and pleasantness. It is in other words a raring, hot, powerful and velvety Sangiovese.


Montalcino is, in the world, the territory where Sangiovese expresses itself at its best. An extraordinary territory that makes something extremely difficult happen, in fact it makes it even seem easy: to produce with the same grapes and from the same vines, young wines that are extremely pleasant and elegant, like Rosso di Montalcino, and super premium wines apt for long ageing such as Brunello.

Rosso -di- Montalcino- 2017- Sangiovese -harvest


In Europe, the 2017 vintage will be remembered as the scarcest and most troublesome of the last 50 years because of a frost at the end of April, and because of a dry and torrid summer, and finally because of the hailstorm in September. A wild climatic situation that miraculously missed Montalcino where the only difference with other vintages was the beginning of the harvest within the first 15 days of September.

Cantine aperte remembering Leonardo da Vinci

Cantine Aperte 2019, Wine day at Casato Prime Donne proposes a candlelit itinerary with music, food from the times of Leonardo and great Brunello and Chianti wines


Cantine- Aperte- 2019 Casato- Prime- Donne

In the Casato Prime Donne winery lit with chandeliers, listening to music from the late 15th century with a glass of Brunello in hand and some food from renaissance times. Donatella Cinelli Colombini wishes to dedicate Cantine Aperte 2019, in her winery in Montalcino to the Tuscan genius Leonardo da Vinci this year, 500 years since his death.

Leonardo had a vineyard in Milan not far from Santa Maria delle Grazie where he painted the Cenacle. In 1515 he wrote the rules for the correct way to produce wine and gave wine practically a spiritual role  “Il vino, il divino licore dell’uva” . To Leonardo have been attributed the idea of the decanter and of the air lock to stop wine and air meeting in the barrels.



<<This itinerary is through the cellar, candlelit, and with tastings of great wines, music, and simple food that recall Renaissance times and will be fun even though it is based on solid cultural basis >> says Violante Gardini,  Cinellicolombini Jr who guides the Movimento del turismo del vino della Toscana and organizes the day dedicated to wine tourism in the whole region.

Cantine-aperte-2019-Casato-Prime Donne -Montalcino

Guided tastings at 11 am, 1pm, 3pm and 5 pm must be booked previously at the following number 0577 849421 (18€ per person for the 4 guided tastings at fixed times and then some informal tours with quick tastings from 11 am to 6 pm).

At the Entrance guests receive a glass and a candle with the request to turn down the volume of their phones so as to enjoy fully the audio, visual and flavour sensations that recall the Renaissance. First stop in the fermentation area in the medieval atmosphere with the screening of images – Chianti Superiore will be served with home baked bread dressed with 2018 extra virgin olive oil.


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