The Bravio delle Botti takes place every year on the last Sunday in August.
It is a contest between the eight districts of Montepulciano, Cagnano, Collazzi Coste, Gracciano Poggiolo, San Donato, and Talosa Voltaia, consisting in the rolling of 80-kg barrels uphill through Montepulciano’s alleys.
The word “Bravio” comes from the vulgar “Bravium” and refers to the painted cloth bearing the image of the city’s patron, St. John the Beheaded, which is paraded during the event.
A historical procession, consisting of more than 300 people precedes the race, which takes place in the evening after the bells toll. Although it doesn’t last long, it’s terribly exciting and frantic, with the inhabitants cheering for their district and encouraging the barrel pushers. Only the winners will be awarded the patron’s painting, a 600-year-old tradition.
The Bravio delle Botti is the perfect opportunity to visit and discover the medieval town of Montepulciano, rich in history and monuments but also home to Vino Nobile, one of the world’s best red wines.
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