Herewith a photo of sunset at Castiglione della Pescaia, where I often take my summertime vacations on the coast of our Tuscany (this photo was realized by Marco Caruso Fotografia).
Many people come to the wine country in the Tuscany for the summer vacation but there is also the beautiful Tuscan coast where you can take the bath, eat the seafood, and enjoy the beautiful landscape and the sunsets.
To visit the abbey is to return back in time. If you consult the official schedule of the abbey, you can visit during the services in which the friars still use ancient Gregorian chants in Latin. It is one of the most inspiring experiences of any sojourn in the Val d'Orcia.
This detail above from the abbey reveals its Romanic origins.
Sant'Antimo also gives its name to the Sant'Antimo DOC, which is Montalcino's appellation for blends that include international grape varieties. Here's the Italian Trade Commission link for information: http://www.italianmade.com/wines/DOC10272.cfm.
Last week we have implemented a monitoring in the vineyards and we have seen that the "allegagione" (fruit set) has been excellent.
In the photo, you can see bunches with uniformly sized berries. Especially in the vineyards with double-cane Guyot training, we have an abbundance of grapes that will certainly force us to carry out a green harvest.
In the vineyards with pruned-spur cordon trained vines, instead, the number of bunches is within the average and for this reason there will be no green harvest.
Despite the fact that the adverse progression of the season (rains and unusual temperatures) has been going on for months, both the olive trees and the vines have completed or are completing their flowering.
This phase is extremely delicate and can cause great damages if the flowers abort and the fruit does not develop.
Fortunately, as can be seen in the photos, the olive trees have transformed the flowers into many olives. If everything proceeds in the right manner, we should have an abundant harvest.
In recent weeks, the inclement weather on alternate days has flagellated also the zone of Montalcino. Saturday, on the peak of the Mt. Amiata, numerous centimetres of snow have fallen while at the foot, it has hailed.
The temperatures have descended to 5° C. and this, together with the inclement weather, has slowed the vegetative development of the vines which are beginning to flower.
Many years had passed since such a rainy and persistent springtime. In my father's memory, one must go back to the vintage of the 1979, which had a similar springtime.
Recently, we have retasted this vintage and the judgment was "optimal".
For this reason, "all things being equal", if the sun will arrive, the vintage 2013 should be equally optimal.