Wonderful Colors and Amazing Taste: Figs with ham in late summer



Hut of Brooms in Tuscany- Cappannelle – Castiglion Fibocchi


In harmony with the nature and the landscape of Tuscany we did a hut of brooms as storage for Holiday House Cappannelle. The end result is amazing as you can see we have “The Most beautiful hut of brooms” of Castiglion Fibocchi (La più bella capanna di scope di Castiglion Fibocchi – Cappannelle)

The vineyard in Tuscany in 12 months

Viticulture: fatigue for 12 months a year

Wherever man cultivates the vine, there are no real breaks in any time of year. We thought of outline, as far as possible, the activity that is carried out by the winegrower during each of 12 months. We will talk the story of the farm of the Cappannelle Holiday House in Castiglion Fibocchi ,Arezzo, Tuscany, Italy

Ii is one of the coldest months; is carried out pruning of vines. In some areas, the traditionalists are beginning to prune the 22 of the month, the day of St. Vincent, patron saint of winemakers. In any case, the work must be completed before the spring vegetative growth.

Detail of cutting: choice
Final result: Pruned vine

Continue pruning in the vineyard; in some areas may terminate already in this month. Instead, there is much to do in the cellar, where the new wine is maturing. It is necessary for controls meticulous so there are no problems that could damage the wine, sometimes beyond repair.


Pruning now coming to an end a little ‘everywhere; in the vineyard is plowing the soil to aerate and remove any weeds. Towards the end of the month, in the most temperate, on the wood of the vine apparently dead, appear the first leaf buds. Start the first show of nature.

After the appearance of the gems, starts the growth of leaves, shoots and flower buds, those who later will bear fruit. At this stage we can already understand roughly what will be the amount of product and the period in which vendemmierà. It ‘a delicate stage where any frost or heavy rain can cause millerandage, or where excessive heat and sun can cause the plants to bring more sap in the leaves and in the fruits, causing leaking.P1030108

In many areas can still very cold and the winemakers resort to fans and heaters to protect the vines from frost; they still work the soil to eliminate weeds. And ‘the period when downy mildew and powdery mildew can damage plants and may need to be treated with fungicides; fertilize the soil.


This is the period of pollination and flowering; if the climate is right, dry and warm, there is rapid flowering and appear the first bunches. Depending on the more or less strong climatic variations, may be formed bunches with berries with different degree of ripeness. After flowering, thin out the shoots and the best are attached to the supports. It may still be necessary to treat against powdery mildew.

Continue the formation and growth of clusters. Depending on the vine variety, you may have problems at this stage, that fruit set; one of the most delicate grape is Merlot; you need to thin out the bunches to ensure the remaining healthy development and flourishing. There are many wild weeds that it is better to delete. Powdery mildew can still be a threat.

Now begins the phase called veraison, in which major chemical changes take place inside the berries, which change color; The sugar content increases considerably. And ‘another critical moment in the vineyard: rain and warm, especially in the absence of ventilation, can promote the formation of unwanted molds, while excessive drought may slow the ripening of the grapes. It must work out a good amount of leaves, to promote a better passage of air and a good exposure of the bunches to sunlight.

Is made to the chamfer of the branches and green pruning, reducing a certain amount of bunches per plant, in order to concentrate on the remaining energy. This phase can begin, according to the mild climate, even in August. There are still dangers due to rains and drought. In some areas, and for some plants early, may start the harvest.

In almost all regions will harvest in quantity. For more grapes later, it may be necessary to wait until the second half of the month to begin the harvest. A collection is finished, the grapes are crushed and the skins, stalks and seeds (pomace) come partly scattered in the vineyard, with natural fertilizers and fertilizers.

Harvest: the laughter party
Harvest: the laughter party

A little ‘everywhere they return the first cold. At this stage it is only the root portion of the plant to be active. It cleans the vineyard and get covered strains screws soil to protect them from winter.

The most important, at this stage, is to trade, had the approach of the Christmas holidays. December 6 is put on sale the new wine and prepare the classic Christmas packages. At the end of the month, in many areas has already beginning the winter pruning.

It is not a simple dog it is simply Chicco



Chicco is the dog of Bianchi Family. It was born in Tuscany in the winter 2012, exactly on 16th january 2012. The meaning of the name is SWEET. All guests of Cappannelle Holiday House love him. And they call him with a english accent and they pronounce its name “Kikko” or “kicco”. It is a true STAR and my second daughter Alice is its best friend.

There are many stories about him. In the summer 2012 while an english family from Bath was arriving for a dinner with us, it did pee, for the big joy, on the leg of the english madame…. we were embarassed for this.

In september 2012 when Karin, a painter from New York City, came for 2 months from us, Chicco found another friend. Every day they met for playing together.

And all little children loved and love him, You can see from the pictures:



Best Supporting Actor






Dinner with French guests – Tarte tatin what a surprise!

Cappannelle Guests from Montpellier (France)Guess who came to dinner?

Last Saturday evening , on 22th march 2014, we offered a traditional Tuscan dinner to our guests of the Cappannelle Holiday House from Montpellier (France), a young couple very friendly and kind.

Every time is like to do a little trip in world. It’s a big opportunity to speak about the life of our guests and know their culture as well as our life in Tuscany

Marusca (my wife) and Graziella my mom) prepared a tuscan dinner for them. The menù was simple but at the same time amazing:

  • Crostini Neri (starters)
  • Homemade Macaroni
  • Roast chicken
  • Salad
  • Cantuccini and Vin Santo
  • ….. Tirami su!

Chianti Wine made from my Dad Renato and an italian coffee!!

……..but the real surprise was the gift of our guests …. infact they prepared a wonderful Tarte Tatin for eating together…….

And only in this moment we knew of the story of the sisters Tatin that for a mistake they invented one of the most famous french cakes.

The Tarte Tatin is a classic sweet French tradition was born at the beginning of the century, thanks to the inventiveness of his sisters Caroline and Stephanie Tatin albergatrici to Loret -Cher , France.

In fact it seems that , as usually happens , this delicious cake is born because (it would be better to say thanks ) of a mistake.
The two Tatin sisters , they had two different roles in the hotel , while the young Carolina was responsible for welcoming customers , Stephanie , cook, took care of the kitchen : Particularly appreciated was his delicious apple pie.
Legend has it that , on a day when the hotel was full of hunters who were waiting to have lunch , Stephanie noticed that you have not prepared her apple pie , without panicking ran into the kitchen , buttered and sprinkled with sugar a pan , put us in apples and it baked . Only after he realized he had not lined the pan with the pasta brisa ! Once again Stephanie took the situation in hand , covered the pan with a single layer of dough and put it in the oven . The story ends , of course, with a happy ending : in fact finished cooking , Stephanie threw the cake on a plate and brought it in the room where he was literally devoured . She was born as the tarte tatin . Subsequently , since the discrete success , the tarte tatin was adopted by the famous Parisian restaurant Maxim ‘s, which made ​​it one of its strong points . Today it is one of the most popular desserts in France and is inevitable in Brasseries and restaurants , from the most modest to the most luxurious .

Video of GialloZafferano: