The Cantico Wine Route or 'Strada dei Vini del Cantico' is a spectacular itinerary taking the traveller past medieval hamlets, castles, abbeys, and churches in central Umbria.
It could be described as a spiritual journey as the route was inspired by Saint Francis of Assisi following his ode to nature 'Cantico delle Creature' written in 1224.
Here wine and the culture of wine are at the center of human acitivty and history.
Try reading the first half of it below.
An itinerary could start or finish in Torgiano before taking in Spello, Todi, Perugia, Bettona, Cannara and Assisi.
24 wine estates offer guided tours on reservation and all are listed at www.stradadeivinidelcantico.it
Also visit Museo del Vino - Fondazione Lungarotti - www.lungarotti.it
A very interesting place, Torgiano was originally an ancient Roman port on the River Tiber.
It was destroyed by the Goths in 595 AD and eventually rebuilt to form part of the fortifications for the territory of Perugia.
The Museo del Vino or Wine Museum in Torgiano was the idea of the Lungarotti family and opened in 1974. It is located in the 17th century Palazzo Graziani Baglioni.
It is not just a collection of wine bottles, but a cultural centre for local agricultural history, theory, techniques and even archaeology and documentation.
As for the wine maybe a handful of the labels will offer an idea: Vignabaldo, Tudernum, Cantine Bettona, Tili and Chiorri.
The territory of the Cantico Wine Route boasts both DOCG and DOC wines. The DOCG is Torgiano Rosso Riserva Docg while the 5 wines classified as DOC are Assisi DOC, Colli Martani DOC, Colli Perugini DOC, Torgiano DOC and Todi DOC
Cantico delle Creature
Altissimu, onnipotente bon Signore,
Tue so' le laude, la gloria e l'honore et onne benedictione.
Ad Te solo, Altissimo, se konfano,
et nullu homo ene dignu te mentovare.
Laudato sie, mi' Signore cum tucte le Tue creature,
spetialmente messor lo frate Sole,
lo qual è iorna, et allumeni noi per lui.
Et ellu è bellu e radiante cum grande splendore:
de Te, Altissimo, porta significatione.
Laudato si', mi Signore, per sora Luna e le stelle:
in celu l'ài formate clarite et pretiose et belle.
Laudato si', mi' Signore, per frate Vento
et per aere et nubilo et sereno et onne tempo,
per lo quale, a le Tue creature dài sustentamento.
Laudato si', mi' Signore, per sor Aqua,
la quale è multo utile et humile et pretiosa et casta.