Visual 40 anni Tenuta VallocaiaVisual 40 anni Tenuta Vallocaia





What was love at first sight more than 40 years ago is now a thriving winery. Rudi Bindella sen. and his local team have invested plenty of passion, dedication and hard work to create a model company. The 2.5 hectares of land they had in 1983 have now grown to 175 hectares, of which one third is planted with vines. «We feel that we have grown together with this land. Tenuta Vallocaia is my ‹piccolo paradiso›,» says Rudi Bindella sen.

In 2024 we are celebrating 40 years of Vallocaia!



Winter pruning on the vinesWinter pruning on the vines

«40 anni – La settimana Vallocaia»

Events – 25.04.2024
Tanti Auguri! Tenuta Vallocaia is celebrating its 40th birthday. And that’s more than enough reason to raise a toast. A whole week packed with attractive events: «la settimana Vallocaia» promises exceptional culinary offerings in Zurich and Berne. From the typical Italian afternoon snack known as «la merenda» to top-notch wine tastings and traditional pasta cookery classes. The ultimate in Italianità!
        


Legumes growing between the vinesLegumes growing between the vines

Fertiliser for vineyards – why is it needed?

Vintage year – 02.04.2024 
Whether it’s for our houseplants or a vineyard full of vines: why do we need to apply fertiliser to cultivated vines? We put this question to Giovanni Capuano, estate manager at Tenuta Vallocaia.



Giovanni, can you give us a brief explanation of how a grapevine functions?
Grapevines use photosynthesis to get the energy they need to grow: they absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and water and minerals from the soil – and use these elements along with sunlight to create sugars and thus build their flowers, leaves, fruits and roots.

Where does the fertiliser come in?
In a natural ecosystem, such as a forest, fruits, leaves and twigs fall to the ground. As a result, the soil recovers the nutrients that the grapevines have taken from it. A closed circle.

And in a vineyard?
In a cultivated field – a vineyard, an olive grove, a vegetable garden – harvesting the crop removes these «natural fertilisers». Over time, a cultivated piece of land loses fertility. That is why you have to apply fertilisers.

How is that done?
There are various options. You can add organic material or minerals to the land under cultivation or apply the fertiliser directly to the grapevines through so-called leaf fertilisation.

At Vallocaia, we use what is known as green manure, which is an indirect way of enriching the soil: in the autumn, we sow field beans, peas and clover between the vines. In May, when these legumes are just about to flower, we plough them in. The roots of the legumes are home to nitrogen-binding bacteria, which are able to absorb nitrogen from the air and pass it on to the vines. In this way, they enrich the soil with nitrogen and organic material.

Is there a standard fertilisation process?
The fertilisation of the vineyards is based on a soil analysis and the vitality of the vines, but also on the desired oenological outcome: a vineyard that produces grapes for long-maturing wines (such as our Vino Nobile Riserva) is treated in a different way than one whose grapes are destined to make young, fragrant white wines (like our Gemella bianco).


Amin Sedrati and Ivan VasilevAmin Sedrati and Ivan Vasilev

Tying up vines

Vintage year – 25.03.2024
After the winter pruning, March is the time for tying the vines to the wire framework that supports the vines. Vines are climbers, so they are given a bit of help to climb: this is known as training the vine.

The Guyot system is the most common training system in high-quality European viticulture. Here a shoot that will later bear grapes is bent into an arc and tied to horizontal steel wires. Tying up the vines is a time-consuming and laborious manual process. To speed up the work, at Vallocaia we use manual «tying machines», similar to a stitching machine.


Visual for the wine course «Vini di Vallocaia» Visual for the wine course «Vini di Vallocaia»

For those with a thirst for knowledge

Events – 14.02.2024
Our winery in Montepulciano may be 700 kilometres away, but we are bringing it to you – with the new «Vini di Vallocaia» wine course in Zurich and Bern. Taste Vino Nobile di Montepulciano from different vineyards, get to know the secret star of our winery and let yourself be seduced by our «international» favourites.

16 October 2024, 18:30
Bindella headquarters, Zurich

15 October 2024, 18:30
Ristorante Verdi, Bern


Amin Sedrati and Ivan VasilevAmin Sedrati and Ivan Vasilev

Freshly bottled

Vintage year – 12.02.2024
In January and February, we fill more than 50% of the bottles produced each year in our cellar. A complex and delicate process, as a mistake at this stage is irreversible. The 0.75 and 1.5-litre sizes are bottled on a fully automatic bottling line:

  1. The machine rinses each bottle with a powerful jet of water, empties it, removes the air and replaces it with an inert gas (we use argon or nitrogen) to prevent oxygen from entering the bottle, which could oxidise the wine.
  2. The bottle is filled with wine, a vacuum is created at the same time, then the bottle is sealed.
  3. The filled bottles are placed in metal baskets and rest for several months (white wine and rosé) or up to several years (our Vino Nobile di Montepulciano) for refinement.
  4.  At the end of this ageing period, when the wine is ready for sale, the bottles are labelled and capsuled, then packed in boxes or wooden crates.

Photovoltaic cells at Tenuta VallocaiaPhotovoltaic cells at Tenuta Vallocaia

Lightweight bottles

Sustainability – 08.02.2024
The environmental impact of glass – from production and transport through to recycling – is very high. Nowadays there is a trend towards using lightweight bottles. We switched from 750-gram bottles to 600-gram back in the early 2000s, and since 2008 we have only been using 500-gram bottles for our entire production. In this way we have been able to reduce the CO2 emissions for the production and transport of the glass by around one third. Naturally, the weight of the bottle does not have any effect on the quality or the storage life of the wine.



Winter pruning on the vinesWinter pruning on the vines

 Winter pruning 

Vintage year – 30.01.2024
For a winegrower, winter pruning is one of the most important and demanding tasks of the entire year. This involves drastically cutting back the grapevines. But why even bother? In principle, the vine does not produce its grapes to make wine, but to grow seeds and reproduce. If the grapevine were not pruned, it would produce many small grapes with very little pulp (juice). The heavy pruning reduces the yield, but increases the quality (sugar and flavour concentration).

Proper pruning is an art; it requires the ability to observe the vine and understand its growing behaviour. It takes years to learn the craft.

  • Good pruning means orienting production towards the desired oenological goal, i.e. the desired quality of the grapes and the wine. Depending on the grape variety, we leave six to 10 buds on the vine, from which six to 10 grapes develop.
  • Good pruning enables the vine to live a long life: every cut is a wound, and if the cuts are not made in the right places, this opens the door to infections that can jeopardise the life of the vine.
  • Winter pruning requires around 100 hours of labour per hectare.

Amin Sedrati and Ivan VasilevAmin Sedrati and Ivan Vasilev

Visit from Italy

Gastronomy – 03.01.2024
For January, our Ristorante Vallocaia in Zurich is delighted to welcome some reinforcements from Italy. Amin Sedrati and Ivan Vasilev normally look after our guests at the Tenuta Vallocaia in Montepulciano. Now they have come to spend a couple of weeks with us in Zurich. Stop by our restaurant in Niederdorf and meet them in person! 


LED lighting in the Ristorante OrnellaiaLED lighting in the Ristorante Ornellaia

Ristorante Vallocaia

 

The «Vallocaia» in Zurich’s Niederdorf district pays homage to the winery of the same name. Here you can enjoy all the Vallocaia wines – accompanied by original, simple Tuscan cuisine.


LED lighting in the Ristorante OrnellaiaLED lighting in the Ristorante Ornellaia

Tenuta Vallocaia

 

The «piccolo paradiso» of the Bindella family in the heart of Tuscany. Their speciality is the superb Vino Nobile di Montepulciano. Definitely one to include in your next trip to Italy!

LED lighting in the Ristorante OrnellaiaLED lighting in the Ristorante Ornellaia

Anniversary events

 

A wine paradise is celebrating its 40th birthday! Whether you prefer a wine course, trip or tasting – we invite you to come and celebrate this anniversary with us!

Various images from the Instagram channelVarious images from the Instagram channel

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Locally sourced wood in a pizza oven at Santa LuciaLocally sourced wood in a pizza oven at Santa Lucia

Greening

Sustainability – 00.04.2024
Our olive groves have been fully greened, our vineyards at least 50 per cent. Greening means allowing other plants to grow between the olive trees and vines. From an agronomic point of view, this has many advantages, including erosion prevention. Greening also makes sense when it comes to our fuel consumption: it takes far less energy to mow than it does to work the soil.



A heat recovery boiler is installedA heat recovery boiler is installed

Solar heating

Sustainability – 00.05.2024
Our water is heated by the sun: the water circulates through transparent cylinders, heats up and is collected in insulated storage tanks. In this way we can generate hot water – for the entire wine cellar – using no energy at all for a large part of the year.



Santa Lucia delivery service on the road with an environmentally friendly motorbikeSanta Lucia delivery service on the road with an environmentally friendly motorbike

Green waste

Vintage year – 00.06.2024
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Santa Lucia delivery service on the road with an environmentally friendly motorbikeSanta Lucia delivery service on the road with an environmentally friendly motorbike

Efficient tractors

Sustainability – 00.06.2024
When choosing our machinery, we look for efficiency: our new tractors use on average 20 per cent less diesel than before. They are also more ergonomic, which is important for the driver.



Winter pruning on the vinesWinter pruning on the vines

Photovoltaics

Sustainability – 00.07.2024
Energy is needed for wine production, such as for controlling the temperature during fermentation or ventilating the cellars. We have installed a photovoltaic system on the roof of our winery with a total output of 145 kWp, which we can use to cover all the daytime energy needs of the tenuta from April to September. Our own electricity generation saves around 78,000 kg of CO2 from being released into the environment each year. This is the equivalent of a four-wheel-drive vehicle travelling 400,000 km. The cost of the photovoltaic cells will be paid off in seven years.



Winter pruning on the vinesWinter pruning on the vines

Waste water purification

Sustainability – 00.00.2024
Dirty water can be purified by means of chemical or organic systems. Since the waste water from our cellars contains virtually no harmful substances, we opted for the organic system of phytodepuration: the waste water is drawn off and fed into a sealed basin containing gravel. The aquatic plants that grow there have bacteria-rich roots which break down the harmful substances. The water from this natural purification system can then safely be released into the river.



Santa Lucia delivery service on the road with an environmentally friendly motorbikeSanta Lucia delivery service on the road with an environmentally friendly motorbike

Vallocaia gift set

Products – 00.11.2024
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Santa Lucia delivery service on the road with an environmentally friendly motorbikeSanta Lucia delivery service on the road with an environmentally friendly motorbike

Insulation

Sustainability – 00.12.2024
When optimising energy usage, compartmentalisation – in other words, the separation of rooms with different heating needs – and thermal insulation are crucial elements. This is why our cellar rooms are separated by corridors and the walls well insulated.



Winter pruning on the vinesWinter pruning on the vines

Cellar work

Vintage year – 00.12.2024
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Discover the products of Tenuta Vallocaia

  1. - +
    Italy, Tuscany
    2020
    85 % Sangiovese, Canaiolo nero, Mammolo, Colorino del Valdarno

    150 cl
    Vino Nobile di Montepulciano docg Toscana, Tenuta Vallocaia
    CHF51.00
  2. - +
    Italy, Tuscany
    2020
    90 % Sangiovese, 10 % Colorino del Valdarno

    75 cl
    Vallocaia – Vino Nobile di Montepulciano docg Toscana, Riserva, Tenuta Vallocaia
    CHF45.00
  3. - +
    Italy, Tuscany
    2020
    85 % Sangiovese, Canaiolo nero, Mammolo, Colorino del Valdarno

    75 cl
    Vino Nobile di Montepulciano docg Toscana, Tenuta Vallocaia
    CHF23.00
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