Sulla Via dell’Olio – Along the Olive Oil Road (dual language)

Sulla Via dell’Olio – Along the Olive Oil Road ( IT)- La Via dell’Olio è quella che dovete seguire venendo in Toscana in questo caldo Ottobre in cui tutte le regole sono state infrante. La vendemmia è finita tardissimo rispetto agli anni precedenti, e la raccolta delle olive ha iniziato già in alcuni angoli della…

Bionda Val d’Orcia

Bionda Val d’Orcia : Coming back to Tuscany after many years abroad meant to me an agenda full of appointments, places to discover and locations to see again after a long time. Val d’Orcia was on top of my list as, for years, I had in mind an American movie we used to watch with…

Small Survival Guide under the Tuscan Sun

Small Survival Guide under the Tuscan Sun –  Yes it is all very romantic…under the Tuscan Sun, the country house villa, the lovely narrow streets in the cities…but when it is so hot that you melt, sleepless nights appear to be longer than they should and the floor seems to glue under your sandals…well …a…

“Dare i numeri” in Florence

Dare i numeri in Florence – During the nineteenth century, Florence experienced sudden massive urban changes with a great increase in business activities, evolving from being simple carts or stalls with people working just outside family homes, to regular shops, the way we know today. The municipality decided therefore that a method was needed to…

Etruscans & the Worship of Beauty

Etruscans & the Worship of Beauty: It seems that Etruscan women were “bellissime da vedere”: very beautiful to look at, as celebrated by Greek and Roman authors who also severely judged them for being too free and extremely emancipated for their times. They also were highly knowledgeable in the field of herbal medicine and cosmetology. For these many reasons, they…

The Witches’ Oak

The Witches’ Oak (La Quercia delle Streghe) If you happen to be near Lucca, to be precise if you are  in the vicinities of  the hamlet of San Martino in Colle – in the Villa Carrara park – you have to stop : here a majestic oak tree of extraordinary shape known as the Witches’ oak, can be found.  600…

CENCI- Word of the Week

CENCI- Word of the Week: February is that time of the year announcing the imminent arrival of Spring and the approaching end of the cold months…even though, very often we have to wait until half of March to really enjoy  milder temperatures. But February in Italy is also closely related to Carnevale (actually, dates always…

A cup of Tea from England to Tuscany

A cup of  Tea from England to Tuscany: “A cup of tea is a cup of peace”…”You can’t buy happiness but you can buy tea, and that’s kind of the same thing” From my English life I brought with me many happy memories linked to the very British drink, together with a good amount of…

The Iron Baron Ghost

( By Mari Regoli) The Iron Baron Ghost: Even though Brolio castle is quite close to Siena, it belongs to the florentine Chianti. Therefore,  all generations of barons at Brolio were strong and trustworthy allies of Florence and the Medicis. The most famous among the Ricasoli barons certainly is Bettino Ricasoli. Successful in politics, he…

Le radiche di Renato and a Torre di Pisa made in Volterra

Le Radiche di Renato – Renato’s Briar Roots: I met Renato Casini while exploring Volterra during one of my Artisan Tours. His tiny shop ( Le Radiche di Renato)  and showroom is in the centre of Volterra, surrounded by alabaster makers and souvenir shops. For many years, he worked as teacher and you immediately realize…