We had the great pleasure of spending some time with the Sieni Family at their family-owned winery, Azienda Agricola Montefioralle, in Tuscany. The winery sits at the heart of the Chianti Classico region, a small area within Tuscany, which has particular soil and climate conditions.
The drive to the winery through the countryside is full of rolling hills graced with warm sunlight. If you set out early enough, there will be plenty of opportunities to pull over and soak it all in.
The tour and tasting started in the nearby town of Montefioralle. After navigating a few of the cobble stone streets, we found the winery's small shop on the main street, where we met Lorenzo. We then followed Lorenzo just down the hill to his family’s winery.
There he took us on a tour of the winery. Given its small size, Lorenzo was able to point out the property lines from the small hill on which we were standing. We also saw where the grapes are crushed and fermented as well as where the wine is bottled and packaged.
At the same time that we were taking the tour, Lorenzo’s family and friends had just finished up the morning harvesting the grapes. Family and friends had driven in from all over to help participate in the grape harvest, which they do once a year. During their break from the harvest, they all sat together, family-style, under a large rustic trellis overlooking the valley, chatting over lunch.
It was heartwarming to see family and friends coming together to pitch in, working hard, and enjoying each other’s company over lunch and a few glasses of wine.
After wrapping up the short tour, we were taken through a progression of eight wines to taste, starting with the most recent. We sat under an olive tree tasting each of the wines, learning more about each of them from Lorenzo’s wife, Manila, who was as informative as she was warm and kind.
Oh, and we literally sat under an olive tree overlooking the sun washed valley. I could not have dreamt up a more beautiful or intimate setting.
The wine was paired with bread, thinly sliced cured meats, and homemade olive oil from the many trees on the property. During the tasting, several of the family and friends in town for the harvest stopped by our table, chatting about Florence, our travels, and of course the wine.
In wrapping up our visit, we couldn’t help but order some of the wine and olive oil that we enjoyed so much to ship back home to share with our own family and friends.
We thoroughly enjoyed our visit and are very thankful to the entire family, particularly Lorenzo and Manila, for their warm hospitality and the opportunity to have a once in a life-time experience at their family-owned winery in Tuscany.
What: Tour & Tasting at the Azienda Agricola Montefioralle Winery
Where: Montefioralle, in the Chianti Classico Region of Tuscany
When to Go: Summer or early fall
Where to Stay: Florence
Time it Takes: An entire day, take your time and enjoy it at a slow pace
What Else to Know:
- Book a visit at the winery ahead of time by visiting their webpage: aziendamontefioralle.com
- Give yourself plenty of time to drive there (and back) and soak in the views
- Allocate some time for wondering around the town of Montefioralle, Tuscany just next door
Harvest photos are courtesy of the Sieni family.