Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Travel Tuesday . Truffle & Chianti Tour . April 2014

One of my favourite days during our adventure in Italy was spent on the Tuscan countryside. We booked a Truffle & Chianti tour based on all the great reviews on TripAdvisor and it definitely lived up to our expectations! The day started when we met our tour guide, Vittorio, at the Central Library in Florence. There was only one other couple on the tour with us and they were so much fun! We got along well as we shared a love for good food, nice wine, and photography.

Our first stop was Tartufi Nacci, a truffle farm in the San Miniato region. We were treated to a walk with a truffle hunter, Ricardo, and his happy and exuberant dog. We (or rather they) found a handful of small truffles, worth only 1.05 euros in total, but the experience was truly priceless. We meandered through the fields and woods for some time and then headed back to Ricardo's home, where his wife, Monica, prepared for us a huge spread of appetizers and steaming bowls of pasta with very generous portions of shaved truffles. After our delicious lunch, Ricardo and Monica presented us with some chocolate truffles that were literally infused with truffle. The combination of chocolate and truffle is heavenly.

Our next stop was to a winery specializing in Chianti Classico and Super Tuscan wines. Torre Alberghieri is located on a picturesque hilltop and the proprietors are artists and winemakers. Rodolfo (one of the brothers who owns Torre Alberghieri) and Vittorio provided us with a tour of the winery. They explained to us the winemaking process and the differences between Chianti, Super Tuscan, and Vin Santo. We were treated to an amazing wine tasting in Rodolfo's villa, which is beautifully furnished with antiques and paintings. The amazing chef's kitchen features a fireplace and a huge table, which quickly became filled with many glasses of wine and plates of nibbles. Vittorio gave us a mini lesson on wine tasting and I did not want the day to end. After the extensive tasting, Rodolfo gave us a tour of his villa, where he also holds art workshops and he even has a room you can rent! Then we headed to the shop to purchase a few bottles to take home. Hubs and I were particularly drawn to the hand painted bottles and the bottles with handmade fresco labels.

This was such a special day and definitely one of the highlights of our entire trip. Thank you to Daniella and Ari for being such wonderful companions (and for the restaurant recommendations) - if you would like to read their recap of this amazing tour, you can visit their blog here.

Happy and full, Vittorio took us back to Florence to enjoy the evening. :)

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