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St George’s Day at Lungarotti Vinyards

The last winery I took you to was new and experimental. See that post at http://theothersideofthecoconut.com/2012/05/04/beyond-assisi-winery-tour-stop-1/

Lungarotti is well established and traditional. Lungarotti wines can be found around the world. If your wine shop does not have any, educate them and have them buy a case or two. You will end up buying all they stock!

Lungarotti is the creation of Giorgio Lungarotti over fifty years ago, He had a vision back then that was very forward thinking. He had a great love of the land and a respect for the people of Umbria  and the community of Torgiano. His commitment to the environment and the dignity of  people shows up wherever you look at Lungarotti.

He combined family land holdings and worked with other land owners to create a winery with a spectacular range of varietals.  In a brochure I was given, I count 27 different labels, some blends and some sparkling.

We were treated to a magnificent lunch of Umbrian specialties. During this feast they treated us to a lot of wine. At one point, I got up, left the table, stumbled my way to the reception area where they sold the wines and purchased a bottle of the nectar I was drinking. It is called San Giorgio. It is a blend of 50% Cabernet, 40% Sangiovese and 10% Canaiolo. I bought an 8 year old vintage because I was told it is best drunk aged for 10 to 15 years , and I did not want to wait more than 2! It is carefully stored where I will forget about it

I have a ream of very interesting promotional materials. but If I shared half of it with you, this post would be too long. I Suggest you go to http://www.lungarotti.it/en  and see for yourself what a first class organization this is. It is not only a winery. They have a restuarant and a charming resort with a wellness center that specializes in vinotherapy! I would love to give THAT a try!

Now we were extremely lucky to arrive on St. George’s day.  In  Torgiano this day in early spring marks the start of the new growth on the vines. They have a special celebration where they burn the cuttings of the old growth in giant bonfires all around the region.

Lungarorotti

This is out blogger group 1 at the bonfire. Everyone looks so happy, because they are!

I’ll get back to that, but first let me introduce our most graceful hosts.

Francesco Zaganelli

This is the grandson of Giorgio. He is the PR and Communication Manager for Lungarotti. He graduated from law school and went off to make his own life before the proud family history lured him back. Although overqualified, he gives a great winery tour. I know just enough about wine to sound ignorant about it, so I tried to stump him with a couple questions, could not do it! Francesco was born in Assisi on St Francis day, hence the name.

Teresa Severini and Maria Grazia

This is  Francesco’s mother and grandmother, Teresa and Maria Grazia. He referred to his grandmother as “the big boss” . Teresa has degrees in Enology from Italy and France. She is one of the first women admitted to the prestigious International Wine Academy in Geneva, among a long list of CV items. Maria Grazia started both a wine museum and an Olive oil museum in the local town. I will explain the gold medals later on.

Lungarotti wines

Now back to our tour. Lungarotti is both modern and traditional. These casks are french oak and help give the wine a great flavor during aging. This is just one photo of one area. Folks, this is a big winery. However, they have not sacrificed the hands-on full of  love approach to wine  making for commercial expediency in the least.

Lungarotti winery

The bottling facility has been in use for twenty years and it still bottles hundreds of thousands of bottles every year.

Lungarotti Winery

I wish I could afford some of these vintage Lungarotti wines!

OK, now to St. George’s day. This special day in Torgiano is celebrated with Bonfires of the old vines. Us bloggers from TBU were invited by wonderful Teresa to a celebration held by her family and community on a hill overlooking the valley. The aforementioned gold medals are badges of honor for those folks who contribute their time to organizing this event.

This is the community that came out for the celebration. I felt very welcomed by all of them.

I made some new pals!

You can see the bonfire behind three scions of the family. From L to R, Teresa’s daughter who had me laughing while explaining the wonderful life in Umbria and the rivalry with Tuscany. Teresa who was our host of extraordinary skill, and Teresa’s older brother who is the Consigliere to the Minister of Defense in Rome.

They roasted a pig, and we ate it with gusto. Of course there was wine! Altogether it was a wonderful night.

Thank you Lungarotti! Thank you Teresa, I have not been so welcomed by anyone in ages.

To my faithful readers, please share this with your FB friends so that more people can learn about this fantastic family and their fantastic wine!

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3 Responses so far.

  1. […] Go here to read the rest:  St George's Day at Lungarotti Vinyards « The Other Side of the … […]

  2. Teresa says:

    Dear Forrest, great it is not enough!
    I thank you for the enthusiastic words and for having so much appreciated our hospitality as well as the value of the tradition on San Giorgio day!
    Teresa
    PS: and special thanks for the “wonderful Teresa”..!

  3. Fzaganelli82 says:

    Dear Friend, we are more then glad to hear that you liked the winery so much, and we think that we the feast of San Giorgio you had a chance to see something very traditional that we all still keep in our hearts, was a pleasure to share it with all of you!!
    We looking forward to welcoming you again!!
    Ciao ciao

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