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The Reclamation of the Wetlands

In 1300, the estate that is now Palazzo Vecchio was the heart of the historically important Fattoria di Valiano farm. Located on the border between the Papal States and the Grand Duchy of Tuscany and overlooking the Val di Chiana, our estate has witnessed major historical events, including the famous reclamation and drainage of the Chiana valley. This spectacular feat of engineering and hydraulics was initiated by Leonardo da Vinci in 1500 and later developed by Antonio da Sangallo. In 1788, a major project was commissioned by Grand Duke Leopold I of Lorraine and executed by Count Vittorio Fossombroni with the goal of making the Val di Chiana the most fertile area in Tuscany. The project took ninety years to complete. It is here, in the clay-rich lands surrounding this area, that Vino Nobile di Montepulciano DOCG – a great Italian wine from the smallest Tuscan appellation - is produced.

The History of Fattoria di Valiano

The Fattoria di Valiano was initiallly the property of the Marquis of Valiano, then the Del Pecora family, and finally it belonged to Marquis Ridolfi, who donated it in 1552 to the Spedale degli Innocenti in Florence. The property was purchased in 1837 by Nicholas Vegni, who together with his son Angelo created the Istituto Le Capezzine, a famous vocational school and research institute for agricultural activities. Seventy years later, the institute sold some of its land and a part of the core of the Fattoria di Valiano to Count Riccardo Zorzi.

In watercolor cadastral maps of the Fattoria di Valiano (made by Samson Pieri in 1696), Palazzo Vecchio is referred to as the "The Villa and vineyards, including the chapel, the well, the great lawn and the garden.”


Renovations of the old buildings at Fattoria di Valiano and the cellars began in 1982. Over subsequent years, the vineyards were individually assessed and at times replanted, allowing the winery now known as Palazzo Vecchio to produce its first vintage of Vino Nobile Montepulciano in 1990.