The rediscovery of Umbria's Sagrantino di Montefalco.
Even today, debate as to whether the Sagrantino di Montefalco is indigenous to Umbria or not continues. A number of historic sources date the origins of the Sagrantino of Montefalco to sometime around the year 1000, when it was introduced to Italy by Franciscan monks, who used the grapes to make their communion wine.
By the 1960's the Sagrantino vines had all but disappeared from the vineyards of Umbria and it was only thanks to a group of enthusiastic and determined young wine producers that the Sagrantino of Montefalco was successfully rehabilitated and once again used to produce wines of impressive stature.
Like the Sagrantino of Montefalco, the Tenuta San Lorenzo, situated close to Foligno, has a thousand-year-long history. The estate extends over almost 400 hectares of land, 80 of which are used for the cultivation of grape vines and olive trees.
At the heart of the estate, there is a tiny rural hamlet complete with 14th century convent, cloisters and a consecrated chapel.
San Lorenzo's wine cellars and olive presses, designed according to the latest in modern criteria, are surrounded by parkland in which horses and deer roam freely
Although tours of the Tenuta San Lorenzo are centered around the company's wine and olive oil production they almost always include a visit to the woods and the old convent.
Tours complete with tastings of wine and typical gastronomic products are available by reservation.
In addition to its highly prized red wines, the most famous of which is the dry Sagrantino di Montefalco, Tenuta San Lorenzo produces Cleos: an excellent wine made with the cherry-flavored Ciliegiolo grape, typical of Umbria.
Another of the estate's pedigree products is its "Millenario" DOP extra virgin olive oil. This wonderfully fragrant oil, laced with the delicate aromas of the Umbrian countryside, is obtained from olives hand-picked in October, before they have reached their full maturation, and which are pressed within 12 hours of harvesting.
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