LUCCA & MONTECARLO, TOSCANA
My husband and I were fortunate enough to have friends visit this summer, and what better thing to do with friends in Tuscany but go on a private wine tour for a day. I used a local tour group called Not Ordinary Ways. We partook in the Lucca Wine Tour. It is a little more expensive than other local wine tours, but it is a private tour and much better than the last wine tour I took that was less expensive.
We started by visiting a small boutique winery in the hills of Lucca called Fabbrica di San Martino. This is a family owned winery. One of the family members gave us an hour lecture on horticulture in the hot Italian sun. He was so enthusiastic about how they grow their grapes and the advances that they have made, that no matter how hot we were getting, we would not interrupt him except if we had questions. From the vines, he took us on a tour of the villa that is part of the winery. The building is absolutely stunning (see image below). People can actually stay in this villa on vacation. There are numerous frescos and a piano that Puccini would occasionally play on. After the tour, we sat together and enjoyed many bottles of delicious wine. We enjoyed each type of wine so much that we all went home with bottles of our own.
Our second stop was a larger winery called Fattoria di Fubbiano. Before touring the production center, we took in the amazing tuscan views surrounding the winery. Then we moved indoors to see the large wine barrels. This was a very different winery and visit from the first one and I liked that about this wine tour. It gave us two different perspectives. Fattoria di Fubbiano was less intimate than San Martino. I felt that the wine was a bit less enjoyable, but we did enjoy putting Acacia honey on all the snacks that they served with the wine.
Overall it was a full day of beautiful sites, delicious wine and great company.