Rugapiana Vacanze Appartments and Bed & Breakfast in Cortona, Tuscany
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Apartments and Bedrooms in the historical center of Cortona, Tuscany     


Are you ready to go and discover one of the most prized and renowned wines in world? After we pick you up, we will visit many enchanting places as we climb up the marvellous hills of the Val d' Orcia that dominate the splendid valleys below, rendered even more beautiful with their orderly vineyards and olive groves.  We will visit the charming Medieval town of Montalcino and the land surrounding it, celebrated for its vineyards of Sangiovese which are used to produce the well-known Brunello di Montalcino, and are also utilized to make the Rosso di Montalcino. The main difference between the two is the length of the aging process, which for the Brunello is a minimum of five years.
During our tour we will visit one or two of the best producers of the Brunello wine and of course do a wine tasting to reveal the secrets that make this wine so unique.  If you wish we can make a reservation for you in a local trattoria for a traditional Tuscan lunch, or you can have an hour of time on your own to wander around this amazing town.  On the return trip, you can choose to visit either the Abbey of S. Antimo or the marvellous town of Sant'Angelo.  We will suggest to you some itineraries and places to visit but it will be up to you to decide what you prefer.  It is our belief that a wine tour should be above all relaxing, just as enjoying a glass of good wine is, without a hectic schedule and open to last minute changes that will satisfy your desires.

Crossing over beautiful landscapes that resemble rare and unique postcards, we will arrive in the heart of Tuscany, the Chianti region.  This splendid land is located between Siena and Florence, and offers us one of the most esteemed and well-known wines in the world.  But the term Chianti does not only refer to wine.  It is a land full of natural beauty, history, abbeys, and castles, and it is full of small, charming towns where it seems like time has stopped.  We will lead you on a journey to discover its wine by visiting vineyards and wine cellars, choosing from among the most renowned producers.  We will also be stopping in some of the castles, rich with history, and surrounded by splendid expanses of land for grape cultivation.  Here you will have the possibility of enjoying lunch or sampling some of the wine that was already being produced in the past by noble families.  Castello di Brolio is a must-see, where history claims that Bettino Ricasoli conducted numerous experiments between 1834 and 1837 in order to determine the perfect combination of grape varieties for producing the delicious Chianti wine.  We will suggest to you the most characteristic towns as well as recommend our favourite restaurants where you can enjoy lunchIt will be up to you to choose how you wish to organize your day in order to make it the most unique and unforgettable ever.

The Etruscan-Roman Strada dei Vini, or wine road, will take us on a unique voyage through the soft rolling hills of Orvieto and Amelia where you can discover the ancient lands that Umbrian wine comes from.  The terrain has always been particularly suited for grape cultivation, and its temperate climate, together with sloping hills that promote exposure to the sun, make it the perfect land for growing vineyards.  We will travel along some of the ancient roads used by the Romans, and will stop to visit the town of Orvieto and a nearby wine cellar.  You will be able to taste various wines from the Sangiovese to the renowned Grechetto di Todi, which was already well-known and appreciated in the Roman Era.  For the most part we will concentrate on the classic white DOC from Orvieto and the white wine from Amelia, though you will also sample some noteworthy red wines from the area.

Less popular and prestigious than the Brunello and Chianti wine, the Nobile di Montepulciano has recently gained more appreciation and success both in Italy and internationally.  Praise of this wine has been found in written documents dating back to the 1500's, but up until just a few years ago producers preferred making Chianti wine, which was more profitable commercially.  Thanks to contributions from the Italian government and the CEE, many wine producers were able to convert their production.  In 1980 the Nobile was recognized as a DOCG wine and in addition, the Rosso di Montepulciano was recognized as a DOC wine.  The difference between the two is distinguished by the grape yield per hectare, alcohol gradation and length of the aging process, but the area of production is the exact same.  Wine producers are free to choose which wine they wish to produce based on technical elements that they examine and judge on their own.  The first stop of this tour will be at the Avignonesi farm, which represents absolute excellence, also regarding the production of the famous Vin Santo, a Tuscan dessert wine.  You can also have lunch in the restaurant of the farm if you wish to sample more of the local treats.  Next we will go to the nearby town of Montepulciano to visit the historical city center and some local wine cellars, all of which share a rare and unique beauty.  Here as we walk from place to place, you will have the possibility to try various wines from different producers, accompanied by mouth watering cheese from Pienza or Tuscan crostini (toasted bread with delicious toppings).

Come join us on our discovery of the most important Umbrian wine, which was virtually unknown until just a few years ago, but that recently has had immense success.  The Sagrantino, which has been cultivated for centuries on the slopes of the Umbrian hills, is considered a native wine of the area, though there are various hypotheses regarding its origin.   Some claim that it is of Spanish origin, others believe that it was brought into the area by Francescan monks, while others still argue that it was introduced into Italy by the Saracens.  We will reach the city-fortress of Montefalco, which is considered the capital of the Sagrantino wine, and will visitvarious enoteche and wine shops as well as the surrounding areas, all of which are dedicated to the production of this renowned wine.  We will follow itineraries that are not often given much publicity abroad, but that we assure you will leave quite an impression.  By visiting some of the better-known producers, you will understand what makes this wine so unique.  You can taste and compare the Sagrantino to the less prestigious Rosso di Montefalco, which uses only 10 to 15% of the Sagrantino grape variety and around 70% of Sangiovese and other varieties, but that however is still a full bodied and noteworthy wine.  We will also stop to visit Bevagna, a small gem from the Middle ages that has been added to the list of the most beautiful towns in Italy.