Tuscany Love

Grab a glass of wine and get comfy, because this post is solely dedicated to vino. If you are classy like us, you will pour some 3 buck chuck {Trader Joe’s wine for those of you yet to experience its awesomeness}. Regardless of your drink of choice, let’s get started.

If you have been following my little travel series recap over the last few weeks, you will remember that I have covered Venice, Rome, Positano, and Capri; all of which were amazing in their own ways. I remember I kept saying “This is the most beautiful place I have ever seen,” until we would travel to the next destination and I would say the same thing. Even now after having had time to process the trip and look through pictures, I still have a hard time choosing which city was my favorite.

But if I was forced to pick one place or if we have the opportunity to travel back to Italy, I would want to spend more time in Tuscany. There was just something about it that I fell in love with. I think it was a combination of the lush green trees, rolling hills, and miles upon miles of vineyards every direction we looked. This was also the only city we rented a car for which allowed us so much freedom and flexibility. And I have to give a shout out to Jordan for doing an excellent job of driving that little manual car through those winding hills. It was an exciting adventure to say the least.

Considering we only had two days in Tuscany, we definitely made the most of our short time. In fact, we managed to fit three wine tours in one day. I’d say two of which I would go back to next time. For the lodging, we used Airbnb again and were both really happy with the location and quality of room we were given. As far as deciding which wineries we would visit, Jordan took me back to a couple places that he had already been to before, and then researched the other. The last one which was essentially a castle was my absolute favorite. It might even be my most memorable part of the trip! Below I have listed the order in which we visited each winery and also happens to be in ascending order from my least favorite to most favorite.

1. Fontodi Winery – was the first of the three wine tours that day and started right around breakfast time which may be part of the reason I didn’t enjoy this one as much. Fontodi is located in the heart of the Chianti Classico part of Tuscany; for those of you familiar with wines, a black rooster on the neck of the bottle indicates that the wine is truly from this region. Anyway, we had a quick tour, tasted a few decent wines, and then were out of there. If I remember correctly, we purchased 1 red and 1 white from this winery {sort of expected if you don’t pay for the tour}. 20140612_004657 20140612_005637 20140612_011600 20140612_012139 20140612_012346 20140612_013105 20140612_020333

2. Fonterutoli Cellar (Mazzei) – this next wine cellar was incredibly impressive. The building itself where we did the tour and tastings did not have the old character typically found at wineries, but it was definitely nice. The floors, barrel cellar, and decor was impeccable. I would say that I enjoyed the actual wine tasting portion the best here, and personally liked the wine better than the other two places. Once again, it was pretty early in our day and there was a good chance I was hungry for lunch. Thankfully they had some saltine crackers to pair with the wine to tie/tide us over. I never know which to say so let me know if you have the answer to that. 20140612_025020 20140612_025940 20140612_030004 20140612_033510 20140612_040655

3. Castello di Verrazzano – after some lunch, a nap, and shower we were ready for the main event. THE CASTLE! We arrived to the gorgeous castle which was built in 1716 around 7:00 pm and were kindly greeted by the tour guide. The group joining us that evening for the tour and dinner was much larger than we anticipated but they ended up being such fun company. After touring the premise and learning about the incredible history, it was time to eat a home-cooked dinner with our new friends from Malta, Scotland, and New York City. The food was INCREDIBLE. Every thing they served us was fresh from their land. From the boar raised on their property to the fresh produce in the garden. It was absolutely one of the best meals we had the entire trip and every course (5 in total) was made from the hands of the sweet women who lived on the land. Full and happy, we left the castle around 11:00 pm. I would recommend this winery in a heart beat if you are ever in the Chianti area. 20140612_095747 20140612_100229 20140612_100326 20140612_101118 20140612_103414 20140612_10494920140612_19260820140612_203328 About 10 purchased bottles of wine later and with more wine knowledge under our belt, we wrapped up our time in Tuscany. It was charming, romantic, restful, and quite delicious! After Tuscany, we headed to Florence for 1 day and were able to see one of Jordan’s friends who he swam with in Rome. She took us to Statue of David, Piazza Michelangelo, and a few other sites I can’t remember off the top of my head. Florence had some beautiful buildings and incredible history, but it was a bit too crowded for my liking. It was so wonderful to meet her and we appreciated the hospitality so much!

Well there you have it, a little summary of each city we visited. I still have so much to learn about Italy and by know means am a travel expert. I like to say I am just getting my feet wet :).

I hope you have a great day!

Abby Dawn


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