We’ve always believed that wine you drink on holiday doesn’t travel well and tastes completely different in the searing heat of the Yorkshire summer. About twenty years ago we visited Greve in Chiantishire, on a road trip back to Bologna for the motorail, from a holiday in Argentario. We parked in the town and sought out some wine caves, buying a case of Chianti Classico mostly on the basis we liked the colour of the cork foil [a rather nice shade of deep jade green]. Back home we opened the first bottle. Horrible. Thin, sharp and sour. Yes, of course we drank it, nothing goes to waste in Yorkshire. Taking Monty Python’s approach that some wine is “for laying down and avoiding” we left it for a couple of years. Miracle. When combined with the unbearably hot Yorkshire summer weather, it tasted just as good as when we tried it on its home territory. [pronounced “terror Tory”].
On that trip we stopped in Sienna but skirted round Florence on route home. There hadn’t been a visit to Firenze since university days when the city was recovering from terrible floods which had destroyed many of the city’s most precious artefacts. So, venturing back to Italy we planned a road trip, flying into Rome and flying back from Pisa, taking in Rome, Greve, Florence, with a visit to some friends in Corsagna, a beautiful authentic village north of Lucca.
The Greve stop was at a small boutique hotel and restaurant, Villa Bordoni, restored and run by a Scottish couple – beautiful and welcome stop mid-way between Sienna and Florence on the “Chianti trail”. Now, it has to be said it took us quite a long time to find it. We’ve never been good at reading all the instructions for something before we dive in and, whilst this generally works [Geography A level being an exception] it didn’t for Villa Bordoni. We had a number of wrong turnings and mostly failed attempts to negotiate an unmade road out of the village.
It can’t be up here, surely…
Well, once we’d persevered along a couple of miles of roughish road [we’re in a hired Alfa Romeo at this point] we finally arrive. Two nights in their “limonaia garden double” and dinner. So relaxing we didn’t want to venture out of our outdoor living space, under the canopy. Especially remembering negotiating that road…
Great food and stunning surroundings. So, in the end we bought some of the Villa Bordoni wine to take back and this time it was fine.
Hotel and restaurant Villa Bordoni