Wednesday, October 24, 2012

You'll Find Me (Wine Tasting) in San Gimignano

I've been eyeing the Bus2Alps Siena and San Gimignano day tour for a while now, so when a few of the off-duty Bus2Alps staff members said they were going on it this past Saturday, I decided to join them. After a long week of work, I could definitely have used some Chianti wine and traditional Tuscan food.

Unfortunately for me, the Bus2alps bus left the central train station at 8am, and after working until 3am, I slept through my alarm and all of the "where are you" texts and woke up at 8:45. But true to Bus2alps standards, the off-duty guides threw me onto a local bus with them and we were able to meet up with the rest of the group. It did mean that I missed out on the Siena leg of the trip though... but more on that later.

After meeting up with everyone in Siena, we hopped on the Bus2alps bus and arrived twenty minutes later to a beautiful little winery called Tentua Toriciano. We took our seats in the dining room and our three course meal and eight glass wine tasting began.

We started with a white, then moved onto lots of reds-- we ARE in the Chianti region! The first course was a mix of antipasti-- our wine tasting guide told us to try each different type of food on our plate with each wine and choose which combinations we liked the best. Cheese will always win for me...

Our wine tasting guide... adorable.

Our second course was Ribollita, a traditional Tuscan soup. Oh.. it was good. Real good.

Everyone enjoying their food and wine.

Last but not least was homemade lasagne. Back in the US, I was never a lasagne fan, but since moving to Florence, I've had some of the best lasagne in the world. This one has to be on the top of the list. And the best part? The salsa tartufo (truffle sauce) drizzled on top....

Once we were stuffed to the brim and in a very happy state after eight glasses of wine, we explored the gorgeous vineyard property for a bit. 

Soon enough, it was time to hop back onto the bus and head into the town of San Gimignano, about twenty minutes away.

Tiernan, our trusty Bus2Alps trip leader

We climbed up to the wine museum once we got into town and had a glass of wine. The views from the museum were magical... exactly what you picture Tuscany to look like.

We didn't have too much time in the town of San Gimignano but we were able to walk around a bit and enjoy how pretty it is. But the most important thing that I wanted to do on this trip was taste gelato from the spot that has won the "Best Gelato in the World" award-- twice...

I consider myself somewhat of a gelato expert, as during my ten months here, I've tasted many a gelato.  I ordered the "cookies" flavor because not only is it my favorite flavor, I like to try the same flavor at each gelateria that I find so that I can judge each place fairly. 

And I hate to say it, but I didn't think that this gelateria was that good. Definitely not the best in the world...

After gelato, we returned to the bus for our trip back to Florence. After food, wine, and gelato, needless to say, the entire bus was passed out for the entire ride home.

You can use gift code "DANTE" for 5% ALL Bus2Alps trips, including Spring 2013 study abroad adventures and post-graduation trips! 

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