On our last day in Florence we met our "I Bike Tuscany" guide near our hotel and she drove us out to San Donato in Poggio, a small Middle aged village between Florence and Siena. We were surprised to see that it was just Darryl and I and our guide, so we would essentially be getting a private tour. Beyond being a serious biker, she was also a licenced sommelier, which in Italy is a 3 year program of study. Score!
|Walking to check out the church|
|Watching mass from the doorway|
|Tuscan hillside vistas|
|Ready to ride|
|Entering the first winery with our guide|
|Wines and Olive Oil at Casa Emma|
Our guide handed us off to the Casa Emma guide and as soon as I got off the bike, I knew things were bad. I couldn't even stand up straight. I was mentally considering finding a tree to crawl under and die. But there was wine inside friends, WINE! My determination for wine tastings knows no bounds. I even went wine tasting in New Zealand one time with the flu. The flu! So onward we pressed. As soon as we got inside the cool wine cellar, I'm not sure if it was the temperature change or the smells of French oak barrels and the particular musk of a wine cellar that I normally find so delightful, but I knew it was game over. I interrupted our guide mid-tour (we were the only two on the tour so super awkward) and announced I needed to sit. They ran to get me a glass of water, but by then it was too late, stomach contents were on their way up. I grabbed D and told him to find me a restroom. Of course the only one there was one on the other freaking side of the winery. Let's just say I made it just in time to revisit my breakfast in the toilet.
|Feeling better, look at the wine I earned!|
|My husband, laughing at me|
Ever the trooper and fortified by our first wine tasting, we got back on the bikes and rode to the next winery. And I did much better, didn't have to get off and walk a single hill. May have put it in the lowest year and furiously pumped my legs while going slower than walking on one, but I made it and I'm so glad I did, this winery was even better than the first.
|The second winery had a luxury villa you could rent a room in|
|Hubs and some casks|
|Olive oil press|
After lunch the guide offered to take us riding more. I told the hubs I was up for another round, but mercifully he said he'd had enough for one day, so we headed back to Florence for a little nap to recover before dinner.
For dinner we went to Antica Trattoria "da Tito" dal 1913, this lovely little restaurant around the corner from our hotel. It was recommended by our hotel and was ranked the #12 restaurant in all of Florence so we decided to check it out. We knew it was going to be good because we had to wait over an hour for a table, which wasn't a problem, because we just strolled back to our hotel and lazed around until going back an hour later. It was a great little spot, not many tourists. Our hotel was away from the main tourist traps of Florence, in a lovely little neighborhood to the north of the main tourist areas in a more residential area, which I loved being able to escape the tourist scene.
Our first course was bresaola wrapped around blue cheese with walnuts. I will definitely be attempting to replicate this at home, is was fabulous!
|Bresaola stuffed with blue cheese and walnuts|
|Fried chicken with fried zucchini flowers|