Harvest time truly is a magical time of year in Chianti; the weather is warm but not stifling, beautiful autumn colours embellish the landscape and Tuscany is enveloped in a spirit of celebration as locals and tourists alike enjoy the harvest festivities. It is no surprise that the best Tuscany wine tours take place at this time of year.
We’re going to walk you through some of the reasons why we believe immersing yourself in the grape harvest season in Tuscany is an amazing experience for wine lovers and wine novices alike.
What Makes The Chianti Region Such A Special Place At Harvest Time?
In Italy, La Vendemmia – the harvest – is a highlight of the year for wineries as it marks the culmination of the growth of the grapes on the vines before the fermentation process begins. Timing of the harvest is crucial – too early or too late and the grapes won’t have the perfect levels of sweetness or acidity. In Tuscany this takes place typically between mid-September and early October, owing to the climate in the centre of Italy at this time.
La Vendemmia also marks a fantastic time to explore the Chianti region. The best Tuscany wine tours offer not only a thoroughly enjoyable experience sampling some of the best vino in a variety of fantastic wineries, but an education into what is such an important part of the region’s heritage and culture. Wine was being produced in Chianti as far back as the 13th century and remains the region’s most famous and cherished trade.
Many would argue that the best Tuscany wine tours happen in the autumn, and with good reason. Tuscany is beautiful all year round but the gold, russet and ochre hues of the harvest period from mid-September to early October only serve to enhance the stunning natural scenery of the area. What better way to see the rolling hills and vineyards than to survey the scene whilst enjoying an excellent glass of Chianti, sparkling in the sunshine.
Traditional harvest celebrations are hosted in almost every town in the Chianti region. We’ve listed below some of the gems that are well worth looking into, giving you the opportunity to have a fun-filled day out and to get an authentic taste of Tuscany.
- The Chianti Classico Expo takes place over four days in Greve with tastings available for wines fit to feature in the best Tuscany wine tours, as well as other local produce such as extra virgin olive oil, cheese, salami and prosciutto.
- The winegrowers of Panazano in Chianti gather in the village square for Vino al Vino to show off their wine, frequently judged to be the best in the area. You can meet the winemakers and spend time trying their products.
- The novello (“new”) wine of the year is celebrated annually in the town of Rufina near Florence with several days of events dedicated to wine, featuring music and entertainment.
- Carro Matto (literally, “crazy cart”) is a tradition in Florence involving a large wooden wagon pulled by a pair of white oxen that is loaded with a pyramid construction of round glass bottles called “fiaschi”. The parade harks back to an ancient tradition whereby new wine produced in the countryside was brought to Florence to be blessed and offered to the city’s rulers.
- Impruneta, a pretty village near Florence, hosts a Grape Festival where four city neighbourhoods compete to throw the most exciting and lavish parade, packed with music, dancing and wine harvest inspired floats.
Check out Visit Florence for more information about the harvest events Tuscany has to offer.
Set Your Italian Adventure in Motion
Where can you find the best Tuscany wine tours? You need look no further. Here at Walkabout Florence we want to share with you our passion for Italian culture and exceptional wine! We believe ours is one of the best Tuscany wine tours around. But don’t just take our word for it. We have an exceptional average rating of 4.9 out of 5 stars from hundreds of reviews on TripAdvisor and Facebook. This is just one of the glowing reviews left for our Chianti Wine and Food Safari.
“We loved it! We met Martina, our guide, at the Walkabout Florence office and it started off great and got better all day. She was very knowledgeable, friendly and fun. Probably one of the best guides and tours ever!”
TripAdvisor Review from Sabino F
Chianti Tour Highlights
Come with us on our superb Chianti Wine and Food Safari and see for yourself what the region has to offer. We take our tour groups on day trips, enjoying fabulous food, wonderful wine tastings and great company together. We’ve done a fair bit of *ahem* research ourselves on what makes the best Tuscany wine tours (and we mean the very bestTuscany wine tours) and we’re confident you’ll come away from our Italian safari feeling warm and fuzzy.
- The impressive Villa Le Corti is a beautiful landmark with a rich history in a stunning setting. What really excites us about the place though is the cool underground labyrinth of wine cellars, extending right underneath the villa and gardens.
- Fattoria de Rignana is a prestigious winery that has been using grapes from its own vineyards in the surrounding valleys for centuries. The estate has been painstakingly restored and now houses accommodation as well as a restaurant.
- Lamole di Lamole, deep in the Italian countryside, is the last stop of our tour. It is situated 10km from the town of Greve and we will journey through a stunning valley and lush beech forests to reach this lesser-known gem of a vineyard.
On this unique day trip from Florence, we will eat and drink our way through Chianti, renowned for its wonderful wines, fresh local produce and some of the best landscapes in the country.
We Are Walkabout Florence
Throughout the tour, our friendly and knowledgeable guides will make you feel welcome and help you familiarise yourself with the culture and wonder of Chianti in harvest time. Book directly with Walkabout Florence to receive a discount on your wine tour and make this dreamy experience a reality!