Tenimenti d'Alessandro is the pioneering winery for Rhône-style wines in Cortona. The d’Alessandro family purchased the 200-acre Manzano farm in 1967 at a time when Cortona was unknown for its wine. The winery began experimenting with 10 acres of Syrah in the late 1980s and discovered that Cortona was ideally suited to Rhône varietals. They followed with an additional 80 acres of Rhône varietals and are now recognized as the benchmark producer of Syrah and Viognier in Italy. Giuseppe Calabresi, a partner of Massimo d’Alessandro since 2007, acquired the estate in 2015, while his son, Filippo Calabresi, has assumed responsibility in the cellar.
Location of Vineyard
Cortona sits to the east of Montepulciano, abutting the Apennine mountains in southeastern Tuscany. The north-facing vineyards of Tenimenti d’Alessandro are located in Manzano, immediately below the hilltop town of Cortona, spreading over 93 acres. The mesoclimate of the area is almost identical to that of the Northern Rhône with a hot and sunny climate during the day and cool temperatures at night. The vineyards are planted to Northern Rhône-sourced clones of Viognier and Syrah in clay soils. The vines are densely planted at an average of 6,500 plants per hectare and are organically farmed.
Cortona earned D.O.C. status in 1999 thanks to the high-quality Syrah produced by Tenimenti d’Alessandro. The wines achieved a further level of refinement when Luca Currado of Vietti and Christine Vernay of Domaine Georges Vernay in Condrieu began consulting with the winery in 2007. Filippo Calabresi, who is now in charge of winemaking, joined Luca in the cellar after studying winemaking and traveling to France, California and Oregon to learn about Syrah. Filippo’s goal is to produce Syrah in the mold of great Northern Rhône wines like Cornas and Hermitage while maintaining the unique sense of place that is Cortona.