The drive to Florence took us just over four hours. Since we have been to this city many times in the past we decided to stay a little outside the city center in a more residential area. We really just wanted to take in the atmosphere of Florence, enjoy the food, and shop at the leather market. We did some damage at the market and we each ended up getting a leather coat... among other things :)
The next morning after breakfast we drove to a very small town outside of Greve in Chianti called Montefioralle (maybe 45 minutes from Florence). There is a small winery here owned by a lovely family. We sat outside in the shade with Fernando, a grandfatherly type, while he poured us tastings from some of his bottles.
|Wind tunnels for the cellar below|
|The natural humidity chamber.|
|View of Pienza from the agriturismo|
|Our breakfast area|
The next day we went to Montepulciano. Montepulciano is a medieval and Renaissance hill town that sits about 2000 feet up. The area is very well-known for its wine and for its regional cuisines including "pici" pasta, lentils, honey, and pork. We walked through the town, climbed the steep hills, and window shopped.
|Inside an underground old wine cellar|
|A sleeping cat|
|Pouring directly from the barrel!|
|Getting samples from the barriques.|
|Salla dei Filosofi (Philosopher's Room)|
We could not think of a more serene setting to spend our last weekend in Italy. We tried to take in as much as we could from gobbling on Tuscan specialties like ribollita, pici pasta, and wild boar, drinking the famed wines of the region - Brunello di Montalcino and Vino Nobile di Montepulciano, and driving through the rolling hills and winding roads of the region. We could not have asked for a better end to our time here.