Saturday, July 30, 2011

When Friends Visit, Day 2, Fattoria Lavacchio

 Janelle was invited to visit Fattoria Lavacchio on Sunday and I was lucky enough to be allowed to tag along.  Hurray for friends!  Lavacchio is reached by traveling East along the river, through the countryside in the direction of Rufina.  It's about 30 minutes outside of Florence and easy to find.  The land originally belonged to the Strozzi family and many of the original villas have been restored and converted to apartments that are part of the agriturismo.  There is a working windmill on the property that was restored by the family and with the help of the comune of Pontessieve.
  We enjoyed a lovely lunch under the restaurant's gazebo next to the pool before our tour of the fattoria and cantina.  Our lunch consisted of roasted vegetables, stuffed zucchini, farro salad, tuscan bean salad, and skewers of chicken and cherry tomatoes - wow.  Desert was white peaches in wine, accompanied by the best and creamiest panna cotta I've ever tasted!
  The very pleasant host Fay led us on a tour of the fattoria and told us of the romantic story of her parents and how they came to purchase the farm.  We climbed the old narrow staircase inside the windmill and were able to see first hand all the working gears inside.  She explained that architectural students from several countries participated in the restoration of the old windmill.  It was really amazing to hear how they all had collaborated to accomplish such a beautiful and functional design.
After a walk around the fattoria it was time to enjoy a glass of wine by the pool and soak our feet.  I can totally see how you could spend days here relaxing, enjoying the food, wine and learning about the processes involved in making wine and olive oil.  The grounds are large, including 7000 olive trees, and well-equiped.  Everything is within easy walking distance; there is a small bar pool-side and a full restaurant at the edge of the property. 
At Lavacchio you can also visit the Innocenti ceramic studio which is on the farm.  The artists make ceramics by hand in the authentic artisian style.  If this is not enough to keep you busy, you can even arrange to take a horseback riding tour of the area. 
  Towards the end of our visit we stopped by the restaurant to meet the cook, who was wearing a shirt with the words "Serial Griller" written on the back, and to enjoy a farewell glass of wine while sitting in the vineyard as the sun set.  Lucky for us there was also a live country band playing on the patio.  Can you picture it -   lounge chairs in the vineyard, sipping wine and listening to live music as the sun goes down? Ahhhhhh...

  For more information visit Fattoria Lavacchio's website.

1 comment:

janelle said...

I just have to say: the pool, the rooms, the windmill are all so beautiful. This country experience just 20 min from Florence = best of both worlds!

And by all means: do try their small-batch grappa. YUM.