Today is our last day in Montisi. What a wonderful town. Well off the lists of the touring hordes, but special, very special!
Montisi is a fortified medieval hill town in an area where settlements date from Etruscan times. It overlooks a valley filled with olive groves, vineyards and woodlands. The view to the south from the villa's garden includes the village of Castelmuzio, 9th century Pieve di Santo Stefano and, in the distance, Mount Amiata. The village is home to 6 tiny churches, a full-service restaurant with grape-shaded dining terrace, a noted slow-food restaurant serving authentic ancient recipes, a prima piatti café with outdoor dining, a cinema showing both European and American films, an outdoor summer club and a classic village barino, (café/bar) – all within minutes’ walk of the villa.
Montisi also has 2 alimentari, or village grocery stores, and a bakery. The traveling mercato or market, together with specialty vendors, visits the village each week. Within 2 miles the neighboring villages of Trequanda and Castelmuzio have additional restaurants and shops. Within a ten mile drive through the Tuscan countryside are Montepulciano and Montalcino, noted for their Vino Nobile and Brunello wines. Pienza, a jewel-like Renaissance village is just 5 miles away. Along the way is the beautiful Sant' Anna monastery, where “The English Patient” was filmed.
I am sure that the amazing citizens of Montisi are happy to see the end of us! They might be able to get some sleep now. It has been an incredible experience to share this jewel of a town with them.
It was a blast of a week. When we arrived last Saturday the area was a torrent of green . . with the odd poppy sticking up to provide some contrast. Leaving today we noticed that there was more yellow and brown than before - amazing how one short week can change the landscape to such an extent.
We made it to Florence in about an hour, then spent 30 minutes dropping off the car which we are pleased to say we did so without ANY incident this time. We took a cab to our hotel and checked in to a lovely room.
Florence is far busier than Montisi! :-)
We toured the Medici Chapel, finally saw the REAL David at the Accademia - talk about a truly awesome experience. We even managed to do some shopping at the market where we were able to buy some of the treats Judy introduced us to in 2006! YUM Truffle salt, tuscan spice mixture, pear, and fig jams for cheese. Funny how many of our purchases involve food.
Paolo is napping in the hotel across the street while I check flight status. Sadly it appears as if they are a go. I can't believe that we will be home tomorrow! I guess it is time to start planning another one . . . .