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Italy in October

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Via Mangiavacchi, 37, 53026 Piennza SI, Italy
One of the most delicious towns in Tuscany - and most beautiful - is the charming Pienza. Situated between Montepulciano and Montalcino in the scenic Val d'Orcia, centuries-old Pienza is best known for its rich pecorino cheeses. Many feel that the...
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Strada Comunale del Borghetto, 53026 Pienza SI, Italy
For two weeks, I volunteered as a WWOOFer at Podere Il Casale where after a day in the gardens, milking goats, or serving cheese tastings to tourists, we all gathered for a staff meal. We ate simple, delicious food like chestnut linguini with...
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Castello di Poggio alle Mura, 53024 Montalcino SI, Italy
For nearly three centuries, workers serving the nobility at Castello Banfi in Tuscany lived in a small hamlet within the castle grounds. In 2007, however, the stone houses within their tiny village were completely renovated under the direction of...
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53026 Pienza SI, Italy
One of the most charming towns we visited during our May trip to Italy was Pienza, situated in Tuscany between Montepulciano and Montalcino (also worth a visit if you're in the area). Pienza is best known for its delicious pecorino cheeses,...
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Via dell'Opio Nel Corso, 34, 53045 Montepulciano SI, Italy
[CLOSED] A Gambe di Gatto is a tiny restaurant in Montepulciano, Tuscany, Italy with fabulous food. The service is very slow as it just a husband and wife team. Laura cooks, Emanuel serves. Using only local products, mostly organic, they do a...
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53017 Radda in Chianti, Province of Siena, Italy
Not sure how La Petraia remains a secret. Set in the hills and surrounded by cypress trees, this property offers all possible Tuscan delights. Everything, from honey to wine, that Chef Susan Grant prepares, from the honey to the wine, is produced...
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50052 Certaldo, Metropolitan City of Florence, Italy
Traveling to Italy had always been a dream of ours, and since we love culture, food and cooking more than we enjoy sightseeing, we wanted to find a place where we would be able to explore Italian cooking but have some freedom to go to other places...
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53037 San Gimignano, Province of Siena, Italy
One of the best things about the beautiful Tuscan hilltop town of San Gimignano - and there are many - is the wonderful street art offered for sale throughout the town. You can watch the artists at work, making the experience even more special....
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Piazzetta del Teatro, 4, 53045 Montepulciano SI, Italy
The store may overwhelm you at first—there are handcrafted copper items covering every surface—but spend a little time here and you'll see each piece serves a purpose as a tool for the Italian kitchen. There are sauce pans in every size, wine...
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Via Ciarliana, 53045 Montepulciano SI, Italy
A walk on the vineyards, after the harvest, enjoying the sun of October. You don't need really a car, you can simply walk for a couple of kilometres out of the historic center and you will see the vineyards used for producing the famous Vino...
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Via S. Zanobi, 33, 50129 Firenze FI, Italy
There are many excellent restaurants in Florence, but this one was recommended to me by a local, and I'm so glad it was. Alessandro, the chef, recently returned after working in New York City for eight years. Located on a small street near the...
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Piazza Santo Spirito, 16/R, 50125 Firenze FI, Italy
$$$$
I love Florence: it's one of my favorite cities in Italy and in the world. But, the downside is that it can get ridiculously crowded. In fact, the last time I visited it was so crowded on the 'main side' of Florence, where the Duomo and all of the...
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52044 Cortona, Province of Arezzo, Italy
Agritourism has become a big business in Tuscany from cooking schools to farm rentals. Alessandra Federici (far right) took a non-traditional route to building her agritourism business. She opened a cooking school in her own home. This deeply...
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Str. di Certosa, 82/86, 53100 Siena SI, Italy
There is an intimate hotel in the hills of Tuscany near Siena called Certosa di Maggiano. It is pure magic. Tranquil and filled with old Italian charm, this is a place to go and chill out. Strada di Certosa 82/86, 39/0577-28-81-80. Rene Redzepi...
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Southern Europe
Umbria's main cheeses are: Pecorino (young), pecorino (aged a bit), and pecorino (well aged). It can grow a tad tiresome. So I was thrilled to discover this goat cheese farm outside of Orvieto. In our visit, my children helped herd the goats,...
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Via Sette Martiri, 7, 05018 Orvieto Scalo TR, Italy
Just go.
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05018 Orvieto, Province of Terni, Italy
Orvieto is one of the most interesting villages of central Italy and one of the principal sights of the region of Umbria. From the first moment it comes into view, it shows all its magnificent beauty. The city sits high on a tuffaceous cliff on a...
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Piazza de' Pitti, 16, 50125 Firenze FI, Italy
With its emphasis on wine and a simple menu, we turned happy hour into a prolonged wine dinner at the Enoteca Pitti Gola E Cantina. It sits across the street from the Pitti Palace, with a commanding view from the covered street-side deck. Three...
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Piazza Garibaldi, 1, 52044 Cortona AR, Italy
If you've just arrived in Cortona, Italy (the Tuscan hill-town made famous in Frances Mayes' memoir, Under the Tuscan Sun), I recommend dining on your first night at Ristorante Tonino. Your seat on the outdoor terrace guarantees a spectacular...
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53024 Montalcino, Province of Siena, Italy
While wine production has been a part of Montalcino life for centuries, it took the 1888 creation of Brunello di Montalcino—a gorgeous twist on Chianti blends made with 100 percent Sangiovese grapes—to put the medieval town’s...
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Località Bagni di Petriolo, 58045 Pari, Civitella Paganico GR, Italy
Relax in the warm volcanic water emerging from deep underground. These natural spas were known by the Romans, who came here for their yearly health retreat.
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Via Talosa, 8, 53045 Montepulciano SI, Italy
There are several enotecas in Montepulciano to get your file of Vino Noble, the local varietal. The tasting room at Talosa is special because of the friendly and knowledgable hosts - Christian and Andreas. These two are so enthusiastic about their...
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Via Camollia, 69, 53100 Siena SI, Italy
Try and catch the weekly market in Siena which is open every Wednesday from early in the morning till around 1.30 p.m. Lots of stands which sell all you can imagine and very cheap: clothes, shoes, bags, crafts, furnishings, linen, trinkets,...
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Via di Monna Agnese, 8, 53100 Siena SI, Italy
When I want to feel like I am on travel while I live and work in Siena I go to this special little restaurant located at walking distace from the Chathedral Square. It is characterized by a wide choice of champagne, typical Tuscan meat menu and...
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Via del Porrione, 33, 53100 Siena SI, Italy
One of the best places to eat in Siena lies a few minutes’ walk from historic Piazza del Campo and inhabits an atmospheric room lined with old glass and wood cabinets full of books and wine bottles. It may be informal, but the gourmet food is top...