Itineraries in Val d'Orcia: landscapes, villages and wine

San Quirico and the collegiate church, Pienza and its Cathedral, Trequanda and its pottery, Montisi and the Grance, VIGNONI and Romanesque spas. Ancient Towns and villages, to the South of the province of Siena, along the via Francigena which for centuries, and still today, fought on foot by pilgrims on their way to Rome. A concentrate of art, culture and landscape that the campaign of Val d'Orcia, much that was included in the Unesco World Heritage 2004. This time, in my wanderings to Italy, It was precisely the Val d'Orcia to meet me.

Reason Official visit of the Orcia wine festival, organized by the Municipality, ONAV and Consortium, which it includes about 50 manufacturers and is chaired by Donatella Cinelli Colombini, a woman of great initiative and wrist that guides him with intelligence and foresight.

The Orcia DOC – which it is based on sangiovese and is primarily known as red wine, although there are the types pinkish, White and Vin Santo – now it aims to make its way between two Italian Tuscan winemaking excellence all, Brunello di Montalcino and Nobile di Montepulciano. Two giants including Doc Orcia, produced in 13 municipalities, moves trying to build a 'virtuous system’ which it is based not only on wine, but in general sull'enoturismo, so take advantage of what the most beautiful countryside in the world (Word of Unesco) can offer. I'm used’ with this objective that the project was born of the cellars with a view: sights through the vineyards from which to watch sunsets and rolling hills that the whole world envies. Rows of cypresses, apple green meadows, olive groves, vineyards, patches of forest. And be sure to find hares, roes, pheasants and wild boar crossing the road, then go slowly.

If you plan to visit these places, I suggest you start your sightseeing tour of Trequanda, where you can stay in Fattoria del Colle, a farm of 300 hectares of vineyards, olive groves, forest areas and structures agrituristiche 1500 scattered in a park. A splendid renovation and conservative that has left intact the charm of the furnishings and buildings. To top it all the wine cellar, a Tuscan restaurant, a cooking school (missed the lesson on Pici), Tennis court, pools, games for the little ones, a spa, secret gardens and a magnificent dog, Felix, which you can not help falling in love.

of Trequanda, where you can have lunch at Conte Matto trying a Tuscan cuisine, move towards Montisi, also this is a sixteenth-century village, beautifully preserved and very lively, where you can visit the Grance, of fortified farms in which the Siena hospital food along the Francigena were stored. Then, head to San Giovanni d'Asso, homeland White Truffle the Crete Senesi: if the truffle is in season (then in October and November) do not miss it and do not miss a visit to the Medieval Castle, where there is also the Truffle Museum. The next stop is Asciano, where you can visit the villages and the Closures’Abbey of Monte Oliveto Maggiore (the monks produce wine and olive oil). Then, across the road that leads to the medieval village of Buonconvento, one arrives at San Quirico d'Orcia. In this place, which it is the heart of the Val D'Orcia, marvel at the Collegiate Church of Saints Quirico and Julietta, Palazzo Chigi with its frescoes and the Italian gardens (built by a cardinal in omaun Pope who will never dwelt, Alessandro VII). Just at Palazzo Chigi, the Town, It was held the Orcia wine festival, Orcia DOC wine festival. For the occasion, in the frescoed halls he has also staged the Apulian artist shows Arianna Greek, who paints using wine.

From San Quirico (before you make a break for lunch at Osteria del Cardinale) head to Bagno Vignoni with its modern thermal baths and its spa bath from Roman times, spectacular especially the first cold, when the hot water in contact with the cold air produces romantic vapors and smoke puffs. Do not leave out the tiny village of Vignoni, in the hills: the tower of a castle, some houses and the church of San Biagio. If there were some signs and some parked cars no one would think of finding in 2015. Finally, end your trip before going to Castiglione d'Orcia, the ancient castle of the Aldobrandeschi, enclosing the height of her teacher in the village of Rocca d'Orcia, with its fortress which dominates the valley, and finally by Pienza, city ​​designed by Rossellino for Pope Pius II.

If you love the breathtaking views, visit the wine cellar Poggio al Vento, Roberto Mascelloni. I'm used’ one of 'wineries with a view’ with one of the most beautiful views. It has a stone farmhouse, a vegetable garden, olive groves and vineyards to organic farming on seven hectares. If you decide to stay with Roberto, you can pick your salad and vegetables to cook them as you prefer, but you can also have breakfast with homemade salami and pecorino exquisite, or wine tasting accompanied by Tuscan traditional recipes prepared by Mrs. Marisa, mother of Robert. I was lucky enough to eat ribollita more good ever, made the old, According to tradition: if you have the patience to wait for the return of the cabbage season, You see the recipe on this blog.

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