The legend recounts that in the Middle Ages, when therepublics of Florence and Siena were fiercely battling for dominion, the territory of Chianti, lying between the two cities, was fought over almost continuously. To end the dispute and establish a definitive border a bizarre method was devised. It was agreed that two knights would set forth from their respective cities and establish the border where they met. Departure was to be at dawn and the starting signal given by cock’s crow.
So the choice of rooster would be more decisive to event preparation than either knight or steed. The Sienese chose a white one, the Florentines a black, which they pent up in a small, dark sty and deprived of food for so many days that it was practically frantic.
On the fateful day of departure, as soon as it was released from its prison the black rooster began to crow, although it was far from dawn. Its crowing allowed the Florentine rider to depart immediately, with a great advantage over the Sienese who had to wait for daybreak for his rooster to crow on time, signaling his own departure. But since his rival had started out so much earlier, the Sienese knight rode only twelve kilometers before encountering the Florentine knight at Fonterutoli. It was thus that almost all of Chianti came under the control of the Florentine republic.
It’s truly a beautiful legend to tell