• Truffles


    During autumn/fall in Tuscany the restaurant menus will be full of dishes featuring freshly picked truffles. The truffle grows symbiotically with oak, hazel, poplar and beech trees. Finding these goodies are not easy though and it is done with the help of a specially trained truffle dog that finds them for the happy owner. During…

  • Olive oil production


    If you are visiting Tuscany at the end of October or beginning of November you will get to experience the olive harvest and olive oil production. This is a fun time of the year when the new season olive oil is available for tasting. If the olives are harvested before November you will get an…

  • The Fiorentina steak


    Bistecca alla fiorentina, or ‘beefsteak Florentine style’, consists of a T-bone traditionally sourced from either the Chianina or Maremmana breeds of cattle and is a favourite of Tuscan cuisine. The steak is grilled over a wood or charcoal fire, seasoned with salt, (sometimes with black pepper) and olive oil, applied immediately after the meat is…

  • Wine tasting


    Tuscany is very much about wine, either from the Chianti or Monalcino regions which produce one of the most exclusive and expensive wines in Italy, the Brunello di Montalcino. Make sure you stop by some vineyards, particularly during the quieter time of the year (not the summer months) you can just drop in at any…

  • Pici, the local pasta


    Pici is a thick, hand-rolled pasta, like a fat spaghetti. It originates in the province of Siena in Tuscany in the Montalcino area where it is also referred to as pinci. The dough is typically made from flour and water only. The addition of egg is optional, being determined by family traditions and is rolled…

  • Brunello di Montalcino


    The Brunello wine is one of the best and most pricey wines in Italy. It is a red wine that is produced in the region of Montalcino, around an hours drive south of Siena. The wine is produced with the same grape as the Chianti wine, namely Sangiovese, and the Brunello wine consists of 100%…

  • Pecorino versus parmesan


    In Tuscany you will mostly come across Pecorino cheese instead of Parmesan cheese. Note that the two cheeses are made from different milk sources, Parmesan is made from cow’s milk, whereas Pecorino is made from ewe’s milk. In fact, the word “pecora” is Italian for “ewe”. Italians refer to Parmesan as “Parmigiano Reggiano”. Be aware…

  • Difference between trattoria, osteria, ristorante and enoteca.


    While travelling in Tuscany you will come across different types of bars and restaurants, namely trattorias, ristorantes, osterias and enotecas and you might wonder what the differences are? The differences today don’t mean as much as in the past as many trattorias and even restaurants call themselves “osteria” and vice versa. The trattorias are traditionally…

  • Porcini mushrooms


    Another foodie delight during autumn/fall is the porcini mushroom which you will find in most restaurants. Try this together with some local pasta, pici, with a bit of sage and butter, heavenly beautiful. During the truffle season some of our hotels offer truffle hunting excursions, which you possibly could use in combination with a cooking…

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