Montefalco Sagrantino “Collenottolo” DOCG

Tenuta Bellafonte is located in Umbria, known as Italy’s “green heart” for its verdant countryside, full of rolling hills blanketed in wild vegetation and cultivated agriculture. Owner Peter Heilbron fell in love with the leafy landscape dotted with medieval towns and historic buildings and left his hometown of Milan for this unique terroir. Peter purchased 30 hectares (74 acres) close to Bevagna in the Montefalco DOCG appellation. There are 7 hectares (17 acres) of Sagrantino under vine, from new and old vines, as well as 6 hectares (15 acres) of Trebbiano Spoletino, a local white variety that packs a punch. The sun-drenched tough, stony soil is mixed with the area’s typical marn and arenaceous formations. The remaining hectares include woodlands and 2,500 olive trees. Tenuta Bellafonte’s aim is to blend into the landscape, impacting the environment as little as possible. The estate also uses solar panels and a biomass boiler and even the remains of pruning are used to produce energy. The winery itself rests on a stainless steel and stone structure directly in contact with the rocky soil, enjoying ideal ventilation thanks to underground conduits that transfer outside air and ensure naturally cool temperatures. Hot air exits the winery through two large chimneys. This same, eco-friendly logic applies to the Bellafonte vineyard practices. Fertilization is entirely natural and no chemical herbicides are used. The trickiest work is performed by hand.

Pure Sagrantino grapes from vineyards near Bevagna, Umbria at an altitude of 260-320 meters (853-1,050 feet) above sea level with southeastern exposure. The grapes begin vinification while still whole through spontaneous fermentation. Maceration on their skins lasts about fifteen days. The wine then ages in large Slavonian oak barrels for thirty-six months and then a few months in bottle before release. Peter does not filter the wine. A lovely interpretation of a big wine, with notes of iris and lavender as well as preserved black fruits, which are all interlaced with sweet spices and aromatic herbs. Full-bodied with strong tannins.

Collenottolo (colle means hill in Italian and Nottolo is the name of the hill) is named for the location of the winery and most of the Sagrantino vineyards. In Peter Heilbron’s words, “We felt this was the best name for a wine that is so deeply rooted in its terroir.”

Wine exported to

USA, Canada, Austria, Japan

Most recent awards

  • 2014 | Gambero Rosso3 Bicchieri
  • 2012 | Wine Enthusiast93
  • 2009 | Wine Spectator91
Grape Varieties:

100% Sagrantino

Fermentation container:

Stainless Steel

Length of alcoholic fermentation:

15 days

Type of yeast:


Fermentation temperature:

26 °C (78.8 °F)

Maceration technique:

Whole berries

Length of maceration:

15 days, (fermentation)

Malolactic fermentation:


Fining agent:


Aging containers:

Slavonian Oak casks

Container size:

30 and 50 HL

Container age:


Type of oak:


Bottling period:


Aging before bottling:

36 months

Aging in bottle:

Over 12 months


Natural Cork


Yes, not certified

Vineyard location:

From vineyards near Montefalco and Bevagna, Umbria

Vineyard size:

7 hectares (17.2 acres)

Soil composition:

Clay and marn

Vine training:

Spurred Cordon and Guyot


260-320 meters (853-1,050 feet) above sea level

Vine density:

5,000 plants per hectare


40 quintals/hectare


Northeastern, southwestern

Time of harvest:

Late September, early October

First vintage of this wine:


Total yearly production (in bottles):


Tasting notes:

Intriguing and intense ruby red with refined notes of iris, lavender, raspberry and blueberry jam as well as a touch of sweet spices and aromatic herbs. The balanced palate shows body and structure as well as pleasingly delicate nuances of fruit and toasty notes.

Serving temperature:

Best served at 18 °C (64 °F).

Food pairings:

Complex and flavorful entrées, red meat, roasts, game, roasted lamb, goulash and other rich, savory stewed dishes and aged cheese.

Aging potential:

up to 20 years


Alcohol cont. 14,5% by volume; dry extract: 32.85 g/l; total acidity: 5.5 g/l; residual sugar: 0.8 g/l; 3.68 pH


Beppe Caviola