Wanting to keep the pace of this trip a more relaxed, New Orleans style experience, we scheduled a lot of time for just hanging out and exploring different areas.
In front of our little apartment.
Having done some serious toasting and celebrating the night of our arrival, everyone had the morning to do what they what they wanted. Some went to Sunday mass, others slept in and hung out at the villa, I went for a run and and had a little breakfast at the apartment Kerry and I are staying in just up the hill from the villa.
The villa is a 16th century home, that is also a historic landmark in the town due to the fact that the famous Renaissance painter, Petro Berrittini, was born there. It has a huge, beautiful garden over looking the valley where we are serving our meals. Today we had freshly made spinach and ricotta ravioli that Antonio sautéed in butter and sage, salad, mixed cured meats antipasta platter and fresh fruit served with a few bottles of delicious sparkling Franciacorta wine.
We spent few hours in the Etruscan Museum, as Cortona was one o the original Etruscan settlements with it's origins dating back to pre Roman times. Afterwards, veryone then went off on their own, visiting the great small shops, ducking in and out of little hidden alleyways and streets, seeing the many churches, and of course we continued our afternoon gelato and espresso tradition!
Tonight's dinner was at Trattoria Dardano, owned by the Castelli family, who serves meat and game from their own farm. We dined on bruschetta, fresh made pici pasta with a duck ragu, a platter of freshly grilled rabbit, pheasant and duck, insalata and the most delicious rosemary potatoes, cooked in the fat of all of those meats on the platter. An array of desserts was accompanied by owner Paolo's incredible house made bay leaf amaro.
As we walked ourselves up the very steep hill to the villa, everyone was completely stuffed and ready to fall into bed. No late night parties tonight as all needs to awake early for our trip to Montalcino and be ready to drink the famous Brunello wines of Col D'Orcia....
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