Fattoria di Fibbiano

On the 6th December 2018 I attended a Conference Press hold by the Pisa Chamber of Commerce  for the lunch of “Terre di Pisa”, the New Tourist Brand and Project for promoting Pisa’s Cultural Heritage and its Wine Making Tradition.

On that occasion I met Nicola Cantoni, who participated as  moderator and as President of Pisa Consortium Wine . This  was founded in 2018 to protect  the Appellation of  “Terre di Pisa Wines” and to develop an internationally-renowned model for producing High-Quality Wines in Pisa and its Province.  That event was open to the Members of  “Terre di Pisa” , and during our Wine Tasting Break , I had the pleasure to exchange two words with Nicola,who invited me to visit his estate at Fattoria di Fibbiano  in order to comprehend better his Love for his job and his complex and fascinating Tourist & Wine Affair Management in Tuscany. With the sunny season approaching fast, It was time to go to Fattoria di Fibbiano , but It was quite impossible to fix a date ,  as Nicola was always really busy  !  I was afraid of losing this great chance to be there, but few days ago  his brother  Matteo Cantoni welcomed me at their  Fattoria di Fibbiano with open arms. I came in this beautiful place as a guest, and  left as a friend! Matteo did everything possible to be available for My Interview and my  Exclusive Wine Tasting despite his daily commitments. Lucky me! As I arrived at Fattoria di Fibbiano , Matteo  greeted me with a friendly smile and a firm handshake. First Matteo told me all about his Family’s History and activity , then I visited the cellar and the vineyards , and finally I had my Great Wine Tasting. I had lots of fun with him for the whole duration of my tour in a sunny day of  March. Moreover, I learned lot of things about this stunning part of Tuscany where his estate is, that is called the Era Valley, close to Pisa and Volterra, which is not well-known to a general public for its Wine production. This territory is fast becoming an essential reference point for Tuscan Wine, indeed for Italian Wine. Matteo‘s Kindness , and  Passion for What he Does  deserve a honorable mention! Let’s discover together his treasure hidden among  Tuscan sunflowers.

Fattoria di Fibbiano’s History

In 1997 Giuseppe Cantoni, with his wife Tiziana and sons Matteo and Nicola, moved from  Lombardy to Tuscany. They were looking for  a successful  Wine Making business living a life far away from the noise of the city and close to nature. Therefore, they purchased a  Medieval Villa at that time, that belonged to the noble family Gherardi del Testa Barasaglia in the 12th century . They  renovated it all and turned it into what Fattoria di Fibbiano is today, a thriving Agricultural Entrepreneurship.

Their adventure from North Italy in Tuscany  was not only the result of a  desire to search for  their El Dorado, but  also  a sign of Destiny printed in one of their first  label “Fonte delle Donne” (“Women Fountain”) .  This exquisite White Wine is made from Colombana, an old grape that grew spontaneously around a miraculous water source near the estate. According to tradition, the Colombana grape was introduced by San Columbanus ‘ followers in the 17th century , when these famous Irish abbots decided to settle here living behind their Milan area. Upon their arrival in their estate, Cantoni Family realized they were not the only foreigners who fell  in love with Tuscany,  finding  the right place where to be ! Bringing to light  the old farmstead was not easy, but all that work  devoted to transform an old ruin into a jewelry was fully rewarded, as Cantoni Family carries on a prospering farming activity today, respecting land and the local traditions. Giuseppe, the father, deals with the General Management of the Middle Age Estate and takes care of the vineyards and countryside. Matteo, the eldest of the two sons, is in charge of Marketing the Wines and his brother, Nicola, is the Winemaker . 

Fattoria di Fibbiano, a Corner of Tuscan Paradise

Fattoria di Fibbiano is not only home to a prestigious Agritourism with a pool,  but also to an exclusive Modern Winery and an amazing Lounge Bar .  It is  located at n. 2 via Fibbiano , in the municipality of Terricciola.

Terricciola is a delicious hamlet surrounded by high walls and defense towers,  in the heart of Tuscan countryside, where History, Culture and Art, join the magnificent Beauty of the Nature in a unique way. Fattoria di Fibbiano is situated in a territory, that has its roots in the culture of the Etruscan civilization, and where Wine is produced  since more than 3000 years and it is  a part of the Local Identity and Culture.  Fibbiano’s philosophy is to continue on this thread of Culture and Tradition, cultivating indigenous grape varieties, suc as Sangiovese, Canaiolo, Ciliegiolo, ColorinoS. Colombana, and Vermentino ,  instead of more international grapes. Fattoria di Fibbiano extends over an area of about 20 hectares of vineyards, 5 hectares of olive groves, 12 hectares of woodland and the rest is arable land. Some vineyards (around 2.5 hectares) are over 100 years old and 17.5 hectares are up to 20 years old. This  mixture of Old Vines and New Vines  keeps the vineyard alive, with red grapes planted on the top of the hill, and white grapes on the lower parts.  Due to Fibbiano‘s proximity to the Mediterranean and Ligurian seas, the soil originates from the sea and is rich in fossil shells from the Pliocene epoch, and medium-textured corals .  In terms of climate, this part of Tuscany has warm sea breezes during the day and cooler nights, which helps the grapes to retain acidity and develop flavor. This particular terroir provides to complex Wines with a certain minerality,  and aging capability.  I appreciated a lot of things, above all that Fattoria di Fibbiano is certified organic. Their Practices, Farming and Wine-Growing Methods are truly natural. They even use  their own wood for central heating. Further, this Sustainable Winery uses a solar plant to conserve energy and produce fresh water. They are always ready  to face new challenges, not least of which  exporting 80% of their Wine to the following countries: United States, Canada, Norway, Ireland, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, China, Russia, Malaysia, Singapore, Japan, Taiwan, Lebanon, Mexico. 

 

Fibbiano’s Wines 

The best part of this incredible Life Experience was my Top Wine Tasting. I was led to a lovely Wine Bar with a large wooden table full with  Fibbiano  Best Wines and platters of Tuscan salami, pecorino and bread.  I sampled 6 different Wines, guided by Matteo who talked me through what I was enjoying, from the colour/appearance, the bouquet/smell and then the flavor. Each Wine was different, but wonderful in its own way.  I tried Red and White Wines, but the majority of the ones I  tried were Red. Most of them are  made from the Sangiovese grapes and some are mixed with other grapes to produce  new fantastic blends. 

White and Rosé:

Red Wines:

  • Le Pianette IGT Toscana : This is a 70% Sangiovese and 30% Colorino Wine;  It  is aged for 6 months in barrels of Slavonian oak and 3 months in bottle;
  • Casalini Chianti Superiore DOCG : This is an 80% Sangiovese and 20% Ciliegiolo Wine. It is aged for 8 months in barrels of Slavonian oak and 3 months in bottle. It has the typical notes of cherry . It is  a well-structured Wine with smooth tannins;
  • L’Aspetto IGT Toscana :  This is a 50% Sangiovese and 50% Canaiolo Wine. It is aged for 12 months in tonneaux, 6 months in cement tanks, and 6 months in bottle. This is an intense ruby Red Wwine with notes of mature red fruit and spices; 
  • Ceppatella IGT Toscana : This is a 100% Sangiovese Wine, which is made with grapes selected from the oldest vineyard of the estate – it’s a 120 years old vineyard . It is a wine aged for 6 months in tonneaux , 14 months in barrels of Slavonian oak, and 5 months in bottle. It has notes of marmalade, spices, tobacco, and cacao and a long persistence. 

Matteo entertained me happily and answered all my questions  by sharing  the secrets of their Quality Wines: “Sun, soil and patience”! 

Pisa Hills Wines 

Fattoria di Fibbiano offers up a bunch of very Tasty Wines for Wine Lovers and Experts to experience.

Fattoria di Fibbiano is situated predominantly in the Wine Trail of the Pisa Hills, an itinerary through the Tuscan countryside, which highlights many small towns that boast great traditions. It’s an area between Pisa and Volterra, and it  extends in the vicinity of the Arno, Egola and Elsa rivers. It embraces  stunning landscapes and places, such as  Casciana Terme, Capannoli, Chianni, Crespina, Lari, Palaia, Ponsacco, Terricciola, Cascina, Collesalvetti, Fauglia, Laiatico, Lorenzana, Montopoli Valdarno, Peccioli, Pontedera, Santa Luce, San Miniato and Collesalvetti .

The rolling Hills of Pisa  gives birth to Top Red & White Wines:

Like other talented Wine Producers within  this zone , Fattoria Fibbiano is an example  of Pisa’s Great Winemaking Potential, that is  only to be revealed in all its splendour.  I am feeling optimistic that this area is set to receive long overdue attention. Matteo was an Excellent Guide and Wine Educator. It was so natural for him to explain all that concerned his farm and how Wine is made from Grapes to Wine. His Passionate Wine Tasting remains for a long time among my memory . I am eager  to learn much more about the Super Wines of Pisa, that’s why another visit to Fattoria di Fibbiano will be a must!

I can just  imagine myself relaxing and sipping a Glass of Your fabulous Wines under a grape vine trellis with a  view of green cypresses marking the contours of the  gentle Tuscan hills! 

Grazie mille Matteo! 

 

 

Enjoy it! 

Stefania

Cantina “Il Borro”. I Fasti di San Colombano, Lucca.

“San Colombano”, Lucca

Il mio fantastico viaggio nel Mondo del Vino inizia con  l’AIS di Lucca, ed è proprio nelle mura di questa città che stasera proseguo il mio itinerario enoico, fermandomi  in un posto esclusivo,  il Ristorante “San Colombano” . Seguitemi!

Il Natale è nell’aria , fa freddo a Lucca,  però  la città gioiello mi  scalda con il suo fascino e  le sue luci. Ad accogliermi nel ristorante la sua bella proprietaria  la Sommelier Simona Carmassi. L’atmosfera al “San Colombano” è intima e raccolta, e Simona con un sorriso enorme fa accomodare me e il resto dei numerosi ospiti ai tavoli, che sono elegantemente imbanditi per l’ Evento Speciale che mi aspetta: una Cena Degustazione tutta  Made in Tuscany.  Protagonisti dello Spettacolo Enogastronomico  i Piatti Stellati dello chef  Giuseppe Da Prato, preparati con prodotti rigorosamente locali, e i  Vini  della Cantina “Il Borro”, presentati dallo charmant  Berardino Dino Torrone,  responsabile vendita Italia di questa prestigiosa cantina in Valdarno. In regia dietro le quinte  ci sono i Sommelier Fratelli Zanni, che scelgono l’abbinamento Cibo/Vino per un Menù perfetto. Iniziano le danze, e tra una portata e l’altra, cala un  silenzio quasi sacro in sala, interrotto solo dalla spiegazione dello Staff del “San Colombano” sulle portate e sul  nettare divino. Da leccarsi i baffi! Provo a non farvi venire invidia, ma ho i miei dubbi. Siete pronti? Tra candele e scintillii di bicchieri, ecco i  fasti di “San Colombano” :

Provo a chiedere allo Chef  Giuseppe Da Prato di svelarmi qualche piccolo segreto delle sue ricette, ma non c’è niente da fare. Mi invita a ritornare e a provare qualche altro capolavoro culinario preparato da lui e da altri maghi dei fornelli,  che lo aiutano, un gruppo di ragazzi che,  nonostante la giovane età , hanno una grande esperienza nella migliore ristorazione regionale.

E sicuramente Domenica 16 Dicembre 2018 non mi perderò  il prossimo appuntamento al “San Colombano”: “Mille Bolle d’Auguri” , una passerella  dei migliori Champagne per celebrare l’arrivo di queste feste.  Non mancate a quest’altro galà Lucchese, per sorprendervi con  Nuovi Accostamenti ed Etichette che hanno dentro tutta la straordinaria Tradizione Enogastronomica della Toscana, una regione che fa sognare, come la storia che sto per raccontare.

La Cantina “Il Borro”: il Buon Vivere Toscano

La Cantina “Il Borro” è  in Toscana,  in Valdarno, nell’area Chianti DOCG, un ambiente unico per genesi e morfologia, da secoli fondamento per la coltivazione della Vite . Sembra che i primi “esperimenti di Chianti” siano stati fatti proprio in questa ricca vallata , che offre ai suoi visitatori boschi incontaminati, lunghi torrenti e dolci colline.

La Cantina  “Il Borro” si trova precisamente nel comune di Loro Ciuffena e prende il  nome dal borgo castello in cui sorge, detto appunto “il Borro”, che in dialetto toscano vuol dire “fossato”; una delle tante misure di difese prese nel Medioevo da questo posto spettacolare, a difesa delle frequenti incursioni degli stranieri , che  se lo sono conteso frequentemente  per la sua posizione e prosperità. La Cantina “Il Borro” è  un gioiello incastonato in un luogo pieno di storia,  che si estende per 700 ettari tra vigne ed uliveti, all’ombra dei cipressi dell’antica “Via dei Setteponti”,  un territorio vocato all’ Arte e alla Cultura,  tra  Firenze, Arezzo e Siena.  Si tratta di un angolo nascosto della Toscana, che una volta scoperto per la prima volta, fa innamorare e  non andare più via , come è accaduto in un lontano passato alle illustri famiglie dei Medici e dei Savoia, che ne hanno segnato le vicende, e in un presente più recente ai Numero Uno della Moda Italiana Ferruccio e Salvatore Ferragamo.

Questa immagine ha l'attributo alt vuoto; il nome del file è 27-Salvatore-Ferragamo-2-1024x512.jpg

Ferruccio Ferragamo rimane folgorato dalla bellezza di questo Antico Borgo Toscano durante una battuta di caccia nel 1985,  e nel 1993 decide di acquistare definitivamente la proprietà dal Duca di Savoia, lasciandolo poi in eredità al figlio Salvatore Ferragamo.

Da allora Ferruccio e Salvatore hanno lavorato incessantemente e con amore, per trasformare quello che prima era un rudere distrutto dalla Seconda Guerra Mondiale in quello che oggi è diventato un Relais di Lusso.  “Il Borro Relais & Châteaux” è pensato per chi vuole prendersi una pausa fuori dal tempo. Un’Oasi interamente dedicata all’Arte, alla Cultura, al Cibo & Vino di Qualità, e  all’Ospitalità . Un lembo di paradiso che racconta una Toscana inedita, dove trovano rifugio dagli appassionati più esigenti di Spa, Golf ed Equitazione, ai Wine & Life Lovers più semplici, che si emozionano davanti alla natura, che qui  si manifesta in tutto il suo rigoglio nei filari di Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Petit Verdot e il più tipico Sangiovese. La famiglia Ferragamo porta in alto il nome del Made in Italy nel mondo attraverso il Vino firmato “Il Borro”  , un’ Etichetta  d’Autore, con qualità, classe, semplicità, rispetto della tradizione e del territorio, e con uno sguardo verso il futuro. Oggi  i Ferragamo  hanno salvaguardato la preziosità di questi paesaggi, mantenendone intatto il fascino,  e contribuendo così ad affermare  sempre più il brand Toscana nel Mondo, nel Turismo e nei Prodotti di Eccellenza.

Questa immagine ha l'attributo alt vuoto; il nome del file è Borro.jpg

 Scusate , adesso vado a preparare le valigie.

Alla prossima!  Sempre se ritorno…

Enjoy It! 

Stefania

Roberto Cipresso: a DiVine Novel

… perché se vuoi emozionare, devi provare per primo le emozioni che desideri suscitare…/…if you want to thrill someone,  try first to feel  the same emotions you desire to awake…” . R. Cipresso.

Wine Tasting at “Nautilus” Restaurant, Tirrenia, Pisa. 

Scanning across the bookshelves in my flat, it dawns on me that my collection falls into three categories: Wine, Food & Travel! Three passions that blend in perfect harmony to a special book, that is “Wine, the secret Novel” written by Roberto Cipresso.

This Outstanding Work is available for purchase in occasion of its presentation prepared by the same author Roberto Cipresso. It takes place at “Nautilius”, an elegant restaurant in Tirrenia, Pisa. On 28th November 2018  Andrea Baldeschi, an experienced Sommelier and the owner of the fascinating place by the seaside, invites me for this memorable event. It is especially a Guided Tasting of Wines from Roberto Cipresso’s most significant Labels , paired with delicious  dishes:

 

 

Guests  enjoy the pleasant atmosphere and the refined cooking, and they are under lovely Roberto‘s spellBefore I sit down together with the other people to taste the lavish food, “Nautilius” ‘s  Wine Cellar grabs my attention. After a while , Andrea leads me in a journey through his best Wines, such as “Masseto”, “Le Difese”, “Sassicaia”, “Keber”, “Dom Perignon 2009”, and more over. Andrea is very proud of his fine Wines Collection. He talks with me about his jewellery, his restaurant “Nautilius”. Andrea manages it with great enthusiasm and success since last April, after his former experience in the catering service. Our conversation about his great Wine Cellar goes on , and at a certain point, he tells me about an incredible story about his precious treasure: the White Wine “Chateau Montelena”-he owns the Top “Chateau Montelena” vintages! Let’s go to France! 

 

“Chateau Montelena”’ and the Judgment of Paris.

“Chateau Montelena”’s history is unbelievable. It is in the Napa Valley and California.

Founded just north of Calistoga by a senator and San Francisco entrepreneur in 1882 at the turn of the century, it was one of the largest wineries in the state. Prohibition put an end to “Montelena”’s winemaking, and the next major era began in 1968, when Jim Barrett purchased the estate. Jim fell in love with this exceptional property. He had a dream of  winemaking at the highest quality level. In 1976 “Chateau Montelena” put California at the forefront of the wine world. That year there was an exclusive tasting at the “Inter-Continental” Hotel in Paris. Four white Burgundies were tasted against six California  Chardonnays. When the scores were tallied, the French Judges were convinced that the top-ranking white wine was one of their own. In fact, it was “Chateau Montelena’s 1973 Chardonnay”, rated above all other wines. This seminal event has been memorialized in the book ”The Judgment of Paris,”” by George Taber, as well as in the 2008 feature film “Bottle Shock”. Today “Chateau Montelena”’s distinct 19th century stone structure stands as a quality icon in Napa Valley , consistently producing some of the finest wines in California. Master Winemaker Bo Barrett, Jim’s son, now runs the estate with the help of Winemaker Matt Crafton .

“Wine, the Secret Novel”  by Roberto Cipresso.

At the end of the “Chateau Montelena” ’s tale,Andrea brings me in the main lounge of his ”Nautilius”  to start the gala dinner in honour of  his friend Roberto CipressoI really enjoy Roberto ‘s  sentimental speech about his book “Wine, the secret Novel” . We  all Wine Lovers and Experts are delight to listen to Roberto, while speaking about his passion, Wine ! 

Roberto Cipresso is an Oenologist, a Winemaker, a Writer, but above all he is a Visionary Leader . His way of  life makes him stand out from the rest of the crowd in the Wine Field. I can feel Roberto‘s personality power, while presenting his book.  He can imagine things that others cannot imagine. He sees the whole process of a big picture, and not a single step. He is present and focused, you can connect with him when you  talk about what he has  in mind, when he  teaches you something about Wine, his Travels, his previous job experiences, his Life! 

Roberto Cipresso, a native  of  Bassano del Grappa (Veneto), completes his agricultural studies and starts his  Winemaking career  at the outstanding estate of “Ciacci Piccolomini d’Aragona” in 1987 . 

Some years later he and two partners founds “Fattoria La Fiorita”, located in Castelnuovo dell’Abate, near Montalcino. He collaborates with well-known  Wine Producers in Italy (“Case Basse”, “Poggio Antico”and abroad (Achaval-Ferrer Winery, Argentina). Roberto ‘s chances to put his professional skills and  ideas about Wine into action are three of his major projects:

 

    • “Winemaking”: a Wine Consultancy for  wine-industry professionals ( in collaboration with his brother Gianfranco, his friend Santiago Achaval , and the Universities of Padova, Venezia, Palermo,Torino, Pisa and Udine); 

 

  • “Wine Circus”: a laboratory aimed at ones who don’t inherit a winery and want to manage a wine label! 

Recalling the most important Roberto‘s enterprising ventures and lifetime achievements awards in terms of Wine & Food  culture, means understanding his complex and sensitive soul: 

 

 

The list would already be too long! Roberto is a creative and multitalented man. Along with the benefits of his many abilities and passions, there is his love for writing, occuring in his books about Wine and its Mystery published between  2006 and 2009:

    • “The Romance of Wine”: my great discovery about an Outline of  Mankind’s History throughout the one of Viticulture Worldwide

 

 

Roberto is also a frequent speaker at different national and international conferences on technical-scientific nature  at Wine Schools and important Universities world-wide.

“Cipresso 43th Parallel”.

Roberto still continues his  incredbile adventure  in his challanging Wine Experiment  entitled “Cipresso 43th”, moving ahead with his ambitious and global vision of the concept of Terroir

“Cipresso 43th” is an attempt to create an Oenological Itinerary using only grapes grown at 43th degrees North Latitude.  According to Roberto’s recent researchesthe 43th Parallel is a magical line with  singular physical/spiritual features for Wine Production. It is  situated halfway between the Equator and the North Pole, running through central and florid places that have shaped the main phases in the evolution of Vine Culture from Mesopotamia  to the USA. A circular line that engulf the Earth among important autochthonous vines:

Roberto demonstrates his  theory about the inimitable  Terroir of Wines produced along the 43th Parallel in his three red Wines  I’m  sipping this evening: 

 

 

In collaboration with the University of Florence, Roberto Cipresso is studying what makes the 43th Parallel so special for Wine Production together with its general aspects (geography, geology, orography, climates, soils, altitudes,etc). Moreover, Roberto remarks that there is Something Magic and Mystical  behind the 43th Parallel, because it is the same axis where holy places are also  located, from Medjugorje, Assisi, Santiago De Compostela to Lourdes . And, of course, that is something very special for Roberto, who think of   himself as an atheist! 

Roberto‘s life is a strivinfor Exellence and Harmony  not only  for Wine, but above all for  Life.  

He is open minded . He doesn’t  limit himself to his own thoughts and ideas. When you talk to him, he listens to what you talk about attentively. He  encourages you to be as creative as possible and never afraid of presenting your point of view! Roberto  gives me a big picture of  his vision about Wine and living in this world. His job  is  an essential part of his existence. It’s not only about running a laboratory or doing analysis, it’s  mainly to be part of making Something Amazing. It’s to combine Science, Creativity and Love, that keeps things interesting, and a  great industry to be in as well. You are surrounded by great Food, Wine, and awesome People. It’s hard work, but very rewarding, like this unforgettable Tasting Dinner skillfully prepared  by Andrea Baldeschi at “Nautilius” restaurant Tirrenia, Pisa. .

Roberto experiments with unconventional colors to find inspiration for his Next Masterpiece, that is still to come! I’m looking forward to it!

Enjoy it! 

Stefania 

 

 

 

Vinoè 2018: Wine Exibition at Stazione Leopolda, Florence

“One should always be drunk. That’s all that matters…But with what? With wine, with poetry, or with virtue, as you chose. But get drunk.” 
― Charles Baudelaire

Florence is not only the “Cradle of the Renaissance”, because its historical center is a triumph of art, but it’s a lively city . There are lots of things to do, such as traditional Festivals, Art and Cultural manifestations that represent the core of the city and its inhabitants. Experiencing Florence in this way means  living the city as a local! 

As the capital of Tuscany, Florence has remarkable Wines, most notably the deep red wine Chianti Classico. Florence offers Wine Festivals lots  all the year long.  In addition, every restaurant, every cafe, sometimes every vendor on the street sells Florence’s best Wines. Above all Tuscany is famous for its Chianti , made with perfect purple Sangiovese grapes grown in the golden sunlight of the Tuscan hills. You’ll also find fine Wines like the”Brunello di Montalcino”, “Pomino Vin Santo” and other “Trebiano White Wines”, and “Moscadello” varieties for sweet wines! It takes a long time to speak about Wine in Tuscany, so it’s better to participate in the Wine Exibition ““Vinoè”, held in Stazione Leopolda, Florence, from from Saturday 27 to Monday 29 October 2018.

“Vinoè”now in its third edition, is  an event dedicated to Italian and International Wine Excellence , and it is organized by FISAR (Italian Federation of Hotel and Catering Sommeliers). There are not only exihibitors with their best bottles of white, sparkling, rosé and red wines, but also cooking shows . 

“Vinoè” is a meeting point for Wine Lovers.  It is possible in 3 days  to discover: 

“Vinoè” is a really beautiful and inspiring experience. There are lots of visitors and I have the fantastic opportunity to taste High Quality Wine such as: 

Three Extraordinary Wineries  give me the idea what Passion for Wine and Life means. 

I want to share with you my favourite Wineries of this unforgettable Wine Kermesse: Claudio Cipressi Winery, Molise”, “Piccini/Tenuta Mora, Tuscany” and “Tenuta del Travale, Calabria”They are 

Claudio Cipressi Winery, is located in San Felice del Molise, Campobasso. Since 2014 it has become officially certified as organic . 

Molise is a beautiful region with a unique landscape. It is largely uncontaminated and the vineyards have great potential, which is why Claudio Cipressi cultivates 16 hectares with enthusiasm. Claudio Cipressi has reintroduced the Tintilia a native white grape variety.

“Tenuta Mora Winery”  is owned by the historic Tuscan Producer Tenute Piccini, one of the most popular brand of Chianti, Chianti Classico, and Brunello Wines in Italy and the world.

“Tenuta Mora  is a boutique Winery located on the Etna volcano, a black mountain looking at a blue shining sea, a unique place able to craft hidden wine gems. The two vineyards of “Tenuta Mora ” are located at about 650-700m in Contrada Rovittello, in the municipality of Castiglione di Sicilia and Contrada Torre, in the municipality of Linguaglossa. The philosophy of “Tenuta Mora Winery” is one grape, one territory. Their main grapes are Nerello Mascalese and Nerello Cappuccio. The average age of vines sits at around 15 years old . Vineyards on the Etna feature extremely fertile volcanic soils at an altitude of 650-700 meters above sea level (2100-2300 ft), with important temperature variations between day and night considerably influencing the quality of the grapes. Other properties under the Piccini umbrella are Valiano in Chianti ClassicoVilla al Cortille in Montalcino, Tenuta Moraia in the Maremma Toscana, and Regio Cantinain the Aglianico del Vulture DOC zone of Basilicata.  They are passionate about Winemaking! 

Tenuta del Travale”  is located in Rovito, Cosenza, a thirty minute drive from the spectacular blue sea of the Tyrrhenian coast in Calabria.

Calabria is a wine region waiting to be discovered. Calabrian Wine has not received the recognition it deserves, even though the region of Calabria has a very long history of vine cultivation. The territory is gorgeous, but the economic problems of the region have prevented it from achieving its full potential. A goal that was pursued with determination by the owners of “Tenuta del Travale” , Raffaella Ciardullo and his husband Nicola Piluso. Today they run this stunning  estate revitalising the old territory.  They carry on the intent of defending the ancient Calabrian origin of Nerello Mascalese with one single label “Eleuteria” (there is  some evidence that Nerello Mascalese may be related to Mantonico Bianco, an ancientCalabrian grape). “Tenuta del Travale” covers two hectares of hilly terrain. Founded in 1993, the estate cultivates today only 2 varieties of vines, Nerello Mescalese and Nerello Cappuccio, from which are produced Red Wines with the IGP recognition

 “Vinoè” 20018 is not only a sensorial experience. It’s the perfect place where you can understand why the story behind each Wine in your glass matters. There’s the Value of Work according to human passion and effort. An example of Authentic Life to follow in the caos of these times!

Enjoy it ! 

Stefania

 

Top 10 things to do in Pisa

Top 10 Things to do in Pisa: a city in Tuscany, Central Italy, on the right bank of the mouth of the River Arno on the Tyrrhenian Sea.

Although Pisa is known worldwide for its Leaning tower (the Bell Tower of the City’s Cathedral), the city of over 88,627 residents (around 200,000 with the metropolitan area) contains more than 20 other historic churches, several palaces and various bridges across the River Arno . Much of the city’s architecture was financed from its history as one of the Italian Maritime Republics. The city is also home of the University of Pisa, which has a history going back to the 12th century and also has the mythic Napoleonic Scuola Normale Superiore di Pisa and Sant’Anna School of Advanced Studies as the best sanctioned Superior Graduate Schools in Italy.

Pisa , The Leaning Tower , what else? Top 10 things !

When Pisa is mentioned, everybody thinks about its tower,  but this impressive “Leaning Bell Tower” it’s just one of the many monuments you can find in this nice Tuscan city.

The beautiful “Piazza del Duomo” collects, in a unique architectural complex in the world, the so called “Campo dei  Miracoli (Miracles Square), the main religious monuments of the city: the Tower,the Cathedral, the Baptistery and the “Campo Santo” (the graveyard).  Pisa, however, it’s not just about this square: it will be enough to move just a little to discover the artistic beauty that make Pisa one of the most beautiful cities in Italy. Buildings, monuments and museums keep alive the memory of a past time during which Pisa was the  Maritime Republic and, for a long time, the undisputed master of the Mediterranean sea . 

1. Top 10 Things to do in Pisa: the Leaning Tower of Pisa

Symbol of the city, thanks to its characteristic slope, this tower is the most famous monument of “Piazza del Duomo” and it was built between the XII and the XIV century.

The Leaning Tower of Pisa  leans because the ground gave during its early stage of construction, and since then it has remained in this way. Even if it could looks scaring, you don’t have to worry about it: the vertical axis, passing through its centre of gravity, falls into the support base, so the tower will never fall down, unless the laws of physics should be subverted. We don’t have certain informations about who built this tower, maybe it was the architect Diotisalvi, who in that period was working at the Baptistery. But even if there are several analogies between the two monuments the diatribe about the paternity of the tower is still open.  

2. Top 10 Things to do in Pisa:the Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta in Pisa

The Cathedral of Pisa, dedicated to Santa Maria Assunta, is the most significant example of the Pisa Romanesque Art.

The architect Buscheto joined the classical tradition with elements from the Norman, Byzantine, Pre-Christian and Arabic Arts, creating a new style which anticipated the Florentine Renaissance. It testifies the prestige that the Maritime Republic of Pisa reached in its moment of maximum power. Its construction began in 1604, in the same date of the beginning of the works of  the Basilica of San Marco in Venice; probably it was risen a sort of silent competition between the two Republics for who was able to build the most beautiful and sumptuous worship place. The current aspect of the the Cathedral of Pisa is the result of continues restauration works made in different epochs. During the IX century some of the statues has been substituted with copies, the originals are now  in the Museum of Opera del Duomo of Pisa.

3. Top 10 Things to do in Pisa: Pisa Baptistery

The Pisa Baptistery too forms the monumental complex of “Piazza del Duomo” (“Cathedral Square” or “Miracle’s Square”). Its construction began in 1153 thanks to the architect Diotisalvi, as an  inscription inside an interior pillar testifies, but a lot of the sculptures on the façade have been made by Nicola Pisano and his son Giovanni.

Nicola Pisano made also the pulpit that represents scenes from the Christ’s life and subject that represents the virtues: all masterpieces testify how their creator has been one of the principals precursors of the Renaissance Art. The external dome covers only the first part of columns and probably the lack of money caused it. The dome, in fact,  is made by different materials (red shingles and lead plates); for the same reason there are no frescoes on the ceiling, even if they were on the original plan. 

 

4. Top 10 Things to do in Pisa: the monumental Graveyard of Pisa

The last wonder of “Piazza del Duomo”  is the monumental “Graveyard of Pisa”, a sacred place. The crusaders brought there the saint-ground taken on the Golgotha mountain, just outside Jerusalem.

There are buried the most important People of Pisa, and there can be found art works from the Etruscan time passing through the Roman and Medieval era until the last century. Simple white marble walls guards the graves; the most important persons were buried into the garden or in the Roman sarcophagi, while the other were buried under the arcades. In the XIX century “Graveyard of Pisa”, was restructured, the sarcophagi was moved under the arcades to protect them, so currently everything is under them. The mix between celebration of the history and the death made this “Graveyard of Pisa”, one of the most visited place during 1800 until the second world war bombardments caused serious damages to the frescoes. In 1945 started the renovation works and they are  still in progress.

5. Top 10 Things to do in PisaBanks of the Arno

Pisa is also known for its Banks of the Arno: all the streets that go along the Arno are an important point of meeting for young people and reference’s point for the tourists. There are important buildings, dated back to the Middle Age, that during the centuries have been transformed. Towers, bridges and buildings, in spite of their actual Renaissance appearance, have a medieval soul, which can’t be ignored by the eye of an attentive tourist.

Among the great number of the banks of the Arno, the most famous is the Medicean one which hosts a great number of historical buildings, such as:  Palazzo dei Medici, Palazzo Toscanelli and the church of Matteo in Soarta.  On the bank of the Arno Gambacorti there’s a small gothic jewel, the church of “Santa Maria della Spina”. It took this name in 1333 when it hosted  the relic of a spur from Christ’s Crown (now exposed in the church of “Santa Chiara”). If you are in Pisa on 16th June, you cannot miss the illustrations of San Ranieri: the backs of the Arno are illuminated by candle lights enhancing the outlines of all buildings and  creating a play of light and colors.

6. Top 10 Things to do in Pisa:”Piazza dei Cavalieri” –Knights Square in Pisa

 “Piazza dei Cavalieri” owes its name to the presence of the headquarter of the Order of Knights of St. Stephen.  For centuries it has been the site of a national civil power, even though today it’s above all a cultural and study place thanks to the presence of the  Scuola Normale of Pisa, housed in the Palace of the Caravan.

“Piazza dei Cavalieri”  is an example of Renaissance architecture designed by Giorgio Vasari, who decorated it  with allegorical figures and zodiacal signs. Close to it there is the beautiful “Palazzo dell’Orologio” (Clock Palace), medieval building in which it was built the “Torre della Fame” (Tower of Starvation). In the Divine Comedy Dante told the story that  the Count Ugolino della Gherardesca died in 1289, in that tower, with its children and grandchildren. The other buildings in the square are “Canonica”, “Palazzo del Consiglio dei Dodici”, the “Church of Santo Stefano” and the one of  “San Rocco”. At the center of the square stands the statue of Cosimo I as a Grand Master of the Knights.
 

7. Top 10 Things to do in Pisa: the Mural made by Keith Haring in Pisa

In 1989, passing through Pisa, Keith Haring left to the city an extraordinary work of art: the mural “Tuttomondo”, painted on the rear façade of the convent of the friars “Servi di  Maria” of the “Church of St. Anthony”.

The “Church of St. Anthony”.is located close to the station, in an urban context in which the artist used to expressed itself at the best. A few months later Haring would die and this mural is one of his last works. He had this idea in  New York after a casual meeting with a Pisa student with whom he talked about world peace. The characters inside the murals are 30, stuck like a puzzle, and each one represents one aspect of a world in  peace: there are “humanized” scissors defeating the evil serpent that was eating the head of the another figure.   Then there is motherhood, represented by the woman with the baby in her arms, the nature with the two men supporting the dolphin and so on.Haring used soft colors, as a form of respect for the beauty of Pisa. He worked on it for a week, with the intention of making a permanent work, in fact, he used the colors specially made by craftsmen of the Caparol Center, tempera and acrylic that could keep intact the quality of color for a long time. After 20 years “Tuttomondo” is still there to remind us the brief and intense life of this extraordinary artist.

8. Top 10 Things to do in Pisa: Narrow Borgo and Wide Borgo

If you pass through the old town centre of Pisa probably  you’ll pass through the “Narrow Borgo” (burg), or “the Borgo” as people of Pisa use to call it.

It’s the most typical street of the center, with its colonnades, the shops, the café. Along the way you can see buildings of the XIV and XV centuries that formed the nucleus of the ancient Pisa: here the noble families and merchants competed to build the most beautiful, the tallest and  colorful building. All that splendor can be seen so much today. Going along “Via delle Colonne” you can arrive in “Piazza Vettovaglie”, secular place of the food market, originally “Piazza dei Porci”. Once the arcades of “Narrow Borgo” are finished there is “Piazza del Pozzetto”.

9. Top 10 Things to do in Pisa: Marina di Pisa and its Harbour 

 

Marina di Pisa and Its Tourist Harbour  (also called simply “Marina”) is a seaside town located just 12 km from Pisa and, unlikely the majority of the Tuscan cities, its foundation is rather recent.

In 1606, Ferdinando I de’ Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany from 1587 to 1609, decided to reclaim the area by moving the River Arno mouth as he believed that the south-west wind could block the normal flow of the Arno River, increasing the risk of flooding in Pisa. On the left bank there was an hexagonal building surrounded by a moat, called “the Fort”, which was the custom for the river traffic. Probably the first houses of fishermen were built around this structure, but the official foundation of the town dates back to 1872, when the municipality of Pisa drew up a plan of a grid-pattern town divided by three squares connected to Pisa by a major road, currently known as “D’Annunzio Avenue” (Viale d’Annunzio). On June 23, 1892 a steam railway line from Pisa to Marina di Pisa was inaugurated (later replaced by an electric one, no longer working as well), which contributed to its rapid growth as a tourist destination. The first restaurants were built in this area, as well as beach resorts and inns. Also many beautiful Art Nouveau and Neo-Medieval Villas were built there, therefore many celebrities chose to buy a house in this new coastal town. Gabriele D’Annunzio, a famous Italian writer, poet and journalist, brought an house here and Marina di Pisa  has been a source and inspiration of many of his poems. Marina di Pisa is  a renowned destination for summer tourism, offering many accommodation facilities. Beaches are both sandy or with pebbles, and along the coast there are many bathing facilities and restaurants. In 2013, the “Porto di Pisa” harbor was inaugurated just 10 minutes away from the city and its famous Leaning Tower and its international Airport, Galileo Galilei. It is located in the center of the most extensive nature reserve of Tuscany, the Natural Park of Migliarino, San Rossore and Massaciuccoli, which covers about 24,000 hectares, ensuring that the view from the sea of dune plants is quite unique. The harbor has 354 seats and has been designed to be entirely walkable thus you can walk admiring the sea, the mouth of the Arno, the Apuan Alps and the port itself. Marina di Pisa offers relax and a beach break from the city, we suggest you to enjoy the seafront, a day at the (free) beaches or in a bathing establishment which is a structure with bathrooms, hot/cold showers, changing area, café and sometime restaurant. You can rent an umbrella with chairs for the day/week/month/season and the service is available seven days a week. The harbor is a perfect spot for a walk and you can have a drink or a coffee here.

 

At the end of the day you can watch the sunset by the sea at Sunset Cafè, where to relax and appreciate Food & Wine, good company and the passing of time!

 

10. Top 10 Things to do in Pisa: Night Life in Pisa

Unlike other major European cities, Pisa is far from being the most sparkling venue when it comes to nightlife opportunities.

Gven the fact that Pisa is a university city and that students represent a consistent percentage of the population, a fairly solid buzz takes hold of certain parts of Pisa at night, especially nearby the University. Students, are, as it were, the most reliable barometer as to the places fitted for drinking, making conversation and, why not, dancing and listening to live music. Thus, Pisa hosts a reasonable number of pubs, bars and clubs which yield mild and yet appealing nightlife opportunities. Tourists with a penchant for long conversations, drinking and dancing may find the center of the city to be the best fitted for their nighttime activities. “Via Lungarno” is a thoroughfare in terms of nightlife venues, the old Caffe dell’Ussero (Lungarno Pacinotti 27, Pisa, Italy) being located here for the thrill of visitors and students alike. The nearby Bazeel pub (Lungarno Pacinotti 1, Pisa, Italy) is yet another popular pub on this street, just like  Amaltea (Lungarno Mediceo 49, Pisa, Italy). All these places offer good music, a fine selection of drinks and, why not, quick snacks in the early hours of the evening. Other recommendable venues in the city of Pisa refer to:  Pick a Flower  (Via Della Sapienza 7, Pisa, Italy)  and the Borderline Club (Via G. Vernaccini 7, Pisa, Italy) have to offer.  Teatro Verdi (Via Palestro 40, Pisa, Italy) is yet another option, and this venue hosts both opera and theater representations, which is always a tempting and pleasant manner of spending evenings for enthusiasts of this kind of performances. During summer nighttime buzz seems to shift from Pisa to the nearby Coastline Resorts, such as Tirrenia, Viareggio and Marina di Pisa. If accommodated in Pisa, a trip to one of these resorts is worth making, if for nothing else, than for sampling the wonderful nightlife opportunities they put forward!

Things to eat in Pisa

Pisa Gastronomy isn’t very popular, because it isn’t very different from the Tuscany one, even if it’s more spiced and abundant . 

Here below  it is the ultimate list of top 10 Foods you must eat in Tuscany with links to  recipes.

 

Lampredotto sandwich

1. Lampredotto (Street Food)

Crostini toscani

2. Crostini Toscani (Starter)

Panzanella

3. Panzanella  (First Course or Starter)

Lardo di Colonnata

4. Lardo di Colonnata (Cured meet served as Starter)

Ribollita

5. Ribollita (First Course)

Pappa al pomodoro

6. Pappa al Pomodoro (First Course)

Caciucco

7. Cacciucco (Fish Stew)

Bistecca alla fiorentina

8. Bistecca alla Fiorentina (Meat)

Castagnaccio

9. Castagnaccio (Dessert)

oliven oil

10. Extra Virgin Olive Oil

11. Tuscany Wine 

 

Where to sleep in Pisa

Pisa attracts about 1 million of different tourists: there are many foreigners, Italians who visit for a school weekend, many trips and even a good number of people who commute to the city to take advantage of the excellent local hospitals.

It’s therefore not easy to find a cheap room, especially in high season and during periods of school trips. I suggest, therefore, to book in advance especially if you want three stars midrange hotels in the tourist areas. Hotel prices in the center start from 80 € per night in a double room including breakfast. A good alternative are the hotels and cottages on the outskirts of Pisa. If you are looking for a right accomodation in Pisa, go to Booking.com . There is a big choice  with prices, pictures  and comments of guests already stayed there. 

Travelers come from all locations of the world to discover the Beauty of Pisa for several reasons: Art, Culture, Friendly People, Wine & Food, extraordinary country side ,  attractive beaches and  weather (spring and late summer are the best times to visit  Pisa)

Click  here Pisa Unica Terra  and discover what you can experience in this Beautiful City!

Enjoy It ! 

Stefania