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Lifestyle Journal

A Tuscan Dream: Tenuta Larnianone

Lifestyle Journal

A Tuscan Dream: Tenuta Larnianone

When you think of Italy, The Vatican, the Pantheon and of course, the Colosseum might first spring to mind. But Tuscany, as birthplace of the Renaissance, has also played a big part in romanticising the image of the boot-shaped nation, with its Medieval duomos, glittering palazzos and inimitable art. For most visitors to the North West province, visiting its most famous cities – Florence, Siena and Pisa – are a right of passage. But there’s so much more to explore off the well-beaten path. Take a trip into the countryside and you’re rewarded with scenic hill towns, ancient estates and picture-perfect landscapes, interspersed neat rows of mystical Cypress trees. And it was this particular spirit of travel that took us to Tuscany to shoot our spring campaign at one of the province’s hidden gems: Tenuta Larnianone.


The Place

Situated just outside of Siena, Tenuta Larnianone is a family run estate which has been producing fine wine and olives since 1939, and features a range of beautiful villas to stay in which make the perfect escape for a week or two. The estate encompasses 19 hectares of vineyards and 12 hectares of olive groves and is nestled in the shadow of the Chianti hills – a name which will get any wine-lover’s pulse racing. The family cultivates grapes native to the area, including Sangiovese, Colorino and Canaiolo, as well as international varieties. Unlike many modern vineyards which have industrialised their processes, the owners of Tenuta Larnianone still believe in traditional methods and cultivate, harvest and process the grapes entirely by hand. In an age of modern machinery, this might all seem a lot of bother for nothing, but there is a practical purpose to this labour of love. With hand-harvesting, each bunch of grapes can be selected at the perfect stage of ripeness to produce a far more refined wine.


The Wine

It would be a cardinal sin to do a spell at Tenuta Larnianone without sampling the estate’s fine vino, which is a dream for even the most demanding oenophiles. The Santa Virginia Chianti, made from a blend of local grapes, including Sangiovese, Colorino and Canaiolo has garnered several international wine awards on account of its well-balanced, yet delicate and complex fruity aromas and flavour. Also not to be missed is the Larniano Chianti Riserva, which is produced from grapes harvested from the most mature vines on the estate, planted in the early 1970s. This exclusive, small-batch wine is aged for 18 months in oak barrels and limited to just 900 bottles. Your reward when it’s de-corked is a soft, fruity aroma, with notes of cranberry, black fruit, sandalwood and coffee. Now that sounds worth the wait. These rich, complex notes are down to the unique soil composition: “Our vines are planted in soil packed with seashell fossils dating from the pliocene period, which brings a rich mineral content to the earth. This gives our wines and extra virgin olive oil of the Tenuta a really distinctive, plush flavour” explains Anna Morfini, co-owner of Tenuta Larnianone. If you prefer something a little lighter and fresher, you’re in luck: this year’s trend for fresh rosè wine is catered to as well. “Drinkers are now looking for wines that are more approachable in terms of body structure, wines with less alcohol content and more freshness. Our local Tuscan Sangiovese red grape makes an exciting rosè for the summer” adds Morfini.


The Restaurant: Sale Fino, Siena

From Tenuta Larnianone keen explorers might want to venture into Siena one evening to sample its many epicurean delights. It’s a mere 15-minute cab ride away and a destination at the top of our list is Sale Fino. This buzzy yet low-key establishment is headed by one of the city’s most promising young chefs and features a constantly changing menu that takes highlights of Italian cuisine and cleverly combines them with international nuances from East and West. Oh, and the wine list is extensive enough to keep even the most seasoned imbiber happy. If the weather is still balmy, we’d suggest phoning ahead to bag one of the outdoor tables – after all, doesn’t food always taste better when it’s eaten alfresco?

Sale Fino, Via degli Umiliati, 1, 53100 Siena SI, Italy


The Day Trip: San Gimignano

San Gimignano, situated an hours’ drive from Tenuta Larnianone, is hands down of the world’s most scenic hill towns. Its nickname is ‘the town of a hundred towers’ – this might seem like an exaggeration now, but in its heyday, the town’s skyline boasted 72 towers built as showpieces by its noble families. Successive feuds and the march of time took their toll and reduced that number to 14, but despite this, the town’s skyline has lost none of its charm. It’s little wonder then that San Gimignano has served as the backdrop to numerous films, including Franco Zeffirelli’s semi-autobiographical work, Tea with Mussolini, 1949’s The Prince of Foxes, starring Orson Welles and 1979’s Il Prato, with Isabella Rossellini. A leisurely stroll around the town’s quaint cobbled streets and a trip up one of the towers for picture-postcard views of the Tuscan countryside are a must. To escape the hordes of tourists, start off early and duck into Cum Quibus on Via San Martino for a decadent lunch. Run by Lorenzo Di Paolantonio and head chef, Alberto Sparacino, this Michelin-starred establishment offers imaginative takes on traditional Tuscan cuisine that you’d be hard-pressed to find anywhere else, including raviolo of hare and roe-deer Wellington.

Cum Quibus, Via S. Martino, 17, 53037 San Gimignano SI, Italy


The Spa: Terme Sangiovanni

Given that the Romans practically invented the health spa, it should come as little surprise that thermal baths remain very popular in Italy. Harnessing natural spring waters heated by geothermal energy, these natural Jacuzzis are reported to have a myriad of health benefits, thanks to healing minerals found in the water. And as fortune would have it, Terme Sangiovanni, one of the finest thermal spas in Tuscany, is just a short drive from Tenuta Larnianone. The establishment offers almost every holistic treatment under the sun, from mud treatments to massages and inhalation therapies. But what you shouldn’t miss is a dip in the thermal pools, which emerge from their source beneath the ground at a toasty 39°c. The water is rich in sulphur and calcium bicarbonate which are known to help with muscular and skeletal complaints, as well as breathing difficulties. Bring your swimwear, dive in and feel your stresses melt away.

Terme Sangiovanni,Via Terme S. Giovanni, 52, 53040 Rapolano Terme SI, Italy

 

For more information about holidays at Tenuta Larnianone, please visit: tenutalarnianone.com

Tenuta Larnianone, Str. di Larniano, 39, 53100 Siena SI, Italy

Cum Quibus, Via S. Martino, 17, 53037 San Gimignano SI, Italy

When you think of Italy, The Vatican, the Pantheon and of course, the Colosseum might first spring to mind. But Tuscany, as birthplace of the Renaissance, has also played a big part in romanticising the image of the boot-shaped nation, with its Medieval duomos, glittering palazzos and inimitable art. For most visitors to the North West province, visiting its most famous cities – Florence, Siena and Pisa – are a right of passage. But there’s so much more to explore off the well-beaten path. Take a trip into the countryside and you’re rewarded with scenic hill towns, ancient estates and picture-perfect landscapes, interspersed neat rows of mystical Cypress trees. And it was this particular spirit of travel that took us to Tuscany to shoot our spring campaign at one of the province’s hidden gems: Tenuta Larnianone.

The Place

Situated just outside of Siena, Tenuta Larnianone is a family run estate which has been producing fine wine and olives since 1939, and features a range of beautiful villas to stay in which make the perfect escape for a week or two. The estate encompasses 19 hectares of vineyards and 12 hectares of olive groves and is nestled in the shadow of the Chianti hills – a name which will get any wine-lover’s pulse racing. The family cultivates grapes native to the area, including Sangiovese, Colorino and Canaiolo, as well as international varieties. Unlike many modern vineyards which have industrialised their processes, the owners of Tenuta Larnianone still believe in traditional methods and cultivate, harvest and process the grapes entirely by hand. In an age of modern machinery, this might all seem a lot of bother for nothing, but there is a practical purpose to this labour of love. With hand-harvesting, each bunch of grapes can be selected at the perfect stage of ripeness to produce a far more refined wine.


The Wine

It would be a cardinal sin to do a spell at Tenuta Larnianone without sampling the estate’s fine vino, which is a dream for even the most demanding oenophiles. The Santa Virginia Chianti, made from a blend of local grapes, including Sangiovese, Colorino and Canaiolo has garnered several international wine awards on account of its well-balanced, yet delicate and complex fruity aromas and flavour. Also not to be missed is the Larniano Chianti Riserva, which is produced from grapes harvested from the most mature vines on the estate, planted in the early 1970s. This exclusive, small-batch wine is aged for 18 months in oak barrels and limited to just 900 bottles. Your reward when it’s de-corked is a soft, fruity aroma, with notes of cranberry, black fruit, sandalwood and coffee. Now that sounds worth the wait. These rich, complex notes are down to the unique soil composition: “Our vines are planted in soil packed with seashell fossils dating from the pliocene period, which brings a rich mineral content to the earth. This gives our wines and extra virgin olive oil of the Tenuta a really distinctive, plush flavour” explains Anna Morfini, co-owner of Tenuta Larnianone. If you prefer something a little lighter and fresher, you’re in luck: this year’s trend for fresh rosè wine is catered to as well. “Drinkers are now looking for wines that are more approachable in terms of body structure, wines with less alcohol content and more freshness. Our local Tuscan Sangiovese red grape makes an exciting rosè for the summer” adds Morfini.


The Restaurant: Sale Fino, Siena

From Tenuta Larnianone keen explorers might want to venture into Siena one evening to sample its many epicurean delights. It’s a mere 15-minute cab ride away and a destination at the top of our list is Sale Fino. This buzzy yet low-key establishment is headed by one of the city’s most promising young chefs and features a constantly changing menu that takes highlights of Italian cuisine and cleverly combines them with international nuances from East and West. Oh, and the wine list is extensive enough to keep even the most seasoned imbiber happy. If the weather is still balmy, we’d suggest phoning ahead to bag one of the outdoor tables – after all, doesn’t food always taste better when it’s eaten alfresco?

Sale Fino, Via degli Umiliati, 1, 53100 Siena SI, Italy


The Day Trip: San Gimignano

San Gimignano, situated an hours’ drive from Tenuta Larnianone, is hands down of the world’s most scenic hill towns. Its nickname is ‘the town of a hundred towers’ – this might seem like an exaggeration now, but in its heyday, the town’s skyline boasted 72 towers built as showpieces by its noble families. Successive feuds and the march of time took their toll and reduced that number to 14, but despite this, the town’s skyline has lost none of its charm. It’s little wonder then that San Gimignano has served as the backdrop to numerous films, including Franco Zeffirelli’s semi-autobiographical work, Tea with Mussolini, 1949’s The Prince of Foxes, starring Orson Welles and 1979’s Il Prato, with Isabella Rossellini. A leisurely stroll around the town’s quaint cobbled streets and a trip up one of the towers for picture-postcard views of the Tuscan countryside are a must. To escape the hordes of tourists, start off early and duck into Cum Quibus on Via San Martino for a decadent lunch. Run by Lorenzo Di Paolantonio and head chef, Alberto Sparacino, this Michelin-starred establishment offers imaginative takes on traditional Tuscan cuisine that you’d be hard-pressed to find anywhere else, including raviolo of hare and roe-deer Wellington.

Cum Quibus, Via S. Martino, 17, 53037 San Gimignano SI, Italy


The Spa: Terme Sangiovanni

Given that the Romans practically invented the health spa, it should come as little surprise that thermal baths remain very popular in Italy. Harnessing natural spring waters heated by geothermal energy, these natural Jacuzzis are reported to have a myriad of health benefits, thanks to healing minerals found in the water. And as fortune would have it, Terme Sangiovanni, one of the finest thermal spas in Tuscany, is just a short drive from Tenuta Larnianone. The establishment offers almost every holistic treatment under the sun, from mud treatments to massages and inhalation therapies. But what you shouldn’t miss is a dip in the thermal pools, which emerge from their source beneath the ground at a toasty 39°c. The water is rich in sulphur and calcium bicarbonate which are known to help with muscular and skeletal complaints, as well as breathing difficulties. Bring your swimwear, dive in and feel your stresses melt away.

Terme Sangiovanni,Via Terme S. Giovanni, 52, 53040 Rapolano Terme SI, Italy

 

For more information about holidays at Tenuta Larnianone, please visit: tenutalarnianone.com

Tenuta Larnianone, Str. di Larniano, 39, 53100 Siena SI, Italy

Cum Quibus, Via S. Martino, 17, 53037 San Gimignano SI, Italy


When you think of Italy, The Vatican, the Pantheon and of course, the Colosseum might first spring to mind. But Tuscany, as birthplace of the Renaissance, has also played a big part in romanticising the image of the boot-shaped nation, with its Medieval duomos, glittering palazzos and inimitable art. For most visitors to the North West province, visiting its most famous cities – Florence, Siena and Pisa – are a right of passage. But there’s so much more to explore off the well-beaten path. Take a trip into the countryside and you’re rewarded with scenic hill towns, ancient estates and picture-perfect landscapes, interspersed neat rows of mystical Cypress trees. And it was this particular spirit of travel that took us to Tuscany to shoot our spring campaign at one of the province’s hidden gems: Tenuta Larnianone.


The Place

Situated just outside of Siena, Tenuta Larnianone is a family run estate which has been producing fine wine and olives since 1939, and features a range of beautiful villas to stay in which make the perfect escape for a week or two. The estate encompasses 19 hectares of vineyards and 12 hectares of olive groves and is nestled in the shadow of the Chianti hills – a name which will get any wine-lover’s pulse racing. The family cultivates grapes native to the area, including Sangiovese, Colorino and Canaiolo, as well as international varieties. Unlike many modern vineyards which have industrialised their processes, the owners of Tenuta Larnianone still believe in traditional methods and cultivate, harvest and process the grapes entirely by hand. In an age of modern machinery, this might all seem a lot of bother for nothing, but there is a practical purpose to this labour of love. With hand-harvesting, each bunch of grapes can be selected at the perfect stage of ripeness to produce a far more refined wine.


The Wine

It would be a cardinal sin to do a spell at Tenuta Larnianone without sampling the estate’s fine vino, which is a dream for even the most demanding oenophiles. The Santa Virginia Chianti, made from a blend of local grapes, including Sangiovese, Colorino and Canaiolo has garnered several international wine awards on account of its well-balanced, yet delicate and complex fruity aromas and flavour. Also not to be missed is the Larniano Chianti Riserva, which is produced from grapes harvested from the most mature vines on the estate, planted in the early 1970s. This exclusive, small-batch wine is aged for 18 months in oak barrels and limited to just 900 bottles. Your reward when it’s de-corked is a soft, fruity aroma, with notes of cranberry, black fruit, sandalwood and coffee. Now that sounds worth the wait. These rich, complex notes are down to the unique soil composition: “Our vines are planted in soil packed with seashell fossils dating from the pliocene period, which brings a rich mineral content to the earth. This gives our wines and extra virgin olive oil of the Tenuta a really distinctive, plush flavour” explains Anna Morfini, co-owner of Tenuta Larnianone. If you prefer something a little lighter and fresher, you’re in luck: this year’s trend for fresh rosè wine is catered to as well. “Drinkers are now looking for wines that are more approachable in terms of body structure, wines with less alcohol content and more freshness. Our local Tuscan Sangiovese red grape makes an exciting rosè for the summer” adds Morfini.


The Restaurant: Sale Fino, Siena

From Tenuta Larnianone keen explorers might want to venture into Siena one evening to sample its many epicurean delights. It’s a mere 15-minute cab ride away and a destination at the top of our list is Sale Fino. This buzzy yet low-key establishment is headed by one of the city’s most promising young chefs and features a constantly changing menu that takes highlights of Italian cuisine and cleverly combines them with international nuances from East and West. Oh, and the wine list is extensive enough to keep even the most seasoned imbiber happy. If the weather is still balmy, we’d suggest phoning ahead to bag one of the outdoor tables – after all, doesn’t food always taste better when it’s eaten alfresco?

Sale Fino, Via degli Umiliati, 1, 53100 Siena SI, Italy


The Day Trip: San Gimignano

San Gimignano, situated an hours’ drive from Tenuta Larnianone, is hands down of the world’s most scenic hill towns. Its nickname is ‘the town of a hundred towers’ – this might seem like an exaggeration now, but in its heyday, the town’s skyline boasted 72 towers built as showpieces by its noble families. Successive feuds and the march of time took their toll and reduced that number to 14, but despite this, the town’s skyline has lost none of its charm. It’s little wonder then that San Gimignano has served as the backdrop to numerous films, including Franco Zeffirelli’s semi-autobiographical work, Tea with Mussolini, 1949’s The Prince of Foxes, starring Orson Welles and 1979’s Il Prato, with Isabella Rossellini. A leisurely stroll around the town’s quaint cobbled streets and a trip up one of the towers for picture-postcard views of the Tuscan countryside are a must. To escape the hordes of tourists, start off early and duck into Cum Quibus on Via San Martino for a decadent lunch. Run by Lorenzo Di Paolantonio and head chef, Alberto Sparacino, this Michelin-starred establishment offers imaginative takes on traditional Tuscan cuisine that you’d be hard-pressed to find anywhere else, including raviolo of hare and roe-deer Wellington.


The Day Trip: San Gimignano

San Gimignano, situated an hours’ drive from Tenuta Larnianone, is hands down of the world’s most scenic hill towns. Its nickname is ‘the town of a hundred towers’ – this might seem like an exaggeration now, but in its heyday, the town’s skyline boasted 72 towers built as showpieces by its noble families. Successive feuds and the march of time took their toll and reduced that number to 14, but despite this, the town’s skyline has lost none of its charm. It’s little wonder then that San Gimignano has served as the backdrop to numerous films, including Franco Zeffirelli’s semi-autobiographical work, Tea with Mussolini, 1949’s The Prince of Foxes, starring Orson Welles and 1979’s Il Prato, with Isabella Rossellini. A leisurely stroll around the town’s quaint cobbled streets and a trip up one of the towers for picture-postcard views of the Tuscan countryside are a must. To escape the hordes of tourists, start off early and duck into Cum Quibus on Via San Martino for a decadent lunch. Run by Lorenzo Di Paolantonio and head chef, Alberto Sparacino, this Michelin-starred establishment offers imaginative takes on traditional Tuscan cuisine that you’d be hard-pressed to find anywhere else, including raviolo of hare and roe-deer Wellington.