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Montepulciano is a village in the Val d’Orcia, south eastern Tuscany, which would have to be one of the prettiest towns in the whole of Italy and is the place for lovers of fine red wine. The gentle rolling peaks and valleys surrounding the hilltop medieval village are so picturesque and covered in vineyards that produce fine wine recognized centuries ago as being worthy of kings : Vino Nobile di Montepulciano.
This wine was the first in Italy in receive the Denominazione di Origine Controllata e Garantita DOCG. It is wonderful just to drive around this area and soak up the Tuscan sun. The wine is produced with 70% Sangiovese grapes with a max of 20% Canaiolo nero and 10% of other varieties. Vinification , compulsory aging and bottling must all take place within the territory of the commune of Montepulciano.
The wine is produced with grapes selected bunch by bunch, aged in oak and wild chestnut casks, stored in ancient caves of tufa. You can still see the fossilized shells in the caverns where the wine matures as the natural limestone of the area was once a seabed.
See our beautiful accommodation in southern Tuscany. Visit the lovely towns of Pienza, Montalcino, San Casciano a Bagni which have magnificent views across the valleys and taste the great wines of Montalcino. From here also it is not far to Siena. Across to the east lies the lovely villages in Umbria which are easily reached on a day trip.
In Val d’Orcia We Recommend…
Stay in our beautiful apartments or a lovely villa in the countryside and take day trips to all the pleasant little villages in the area. The Val d’Orcia is a great base to visit Umbria and the rest of Tuscany. Have a relaxing coffee and pastry at the cafe we recommend in Montepulciano. This was the place in the nineteenth century for aristocratic families to holiday, where great love stories started while intellectuals debated and now it is exquisitely restored. Visit our recommended Cantine and Enoteche where you can savour the Vino Nobile. See the handmade books who have been making books since 1848 and were recently featured in the Harry Potter films.
Getting There And Around
A car is a must in the Val D’Orcia and Montepulciano wine region, as public transport is limited. Air: the closest airport is at Perugia, closely followed by Florence. Other airports are at Pisa and Rome. Car: from the south: Autostrada A1 Firenze-Roma, exit Chiusi-Canciano Terme, and then SS146 (about 20 km). Take the train from Florence or Roma to Chiusi.
From the north: Autostrada A1 exit Valdichiana, and then SS 326 (about 20 km). From Siena or from Perugia: take the autostradale Siena-Bettolle-Perugia. Parking – look for street parking (check if you need to purchase and display a parking ticket) or for the blue “P” signs which will take you to designated parking areas.
The Val d’Orcia – the valleys around the Orcia river in the South Eastern area of Tuscany, in the centre of Italy. It is one of the most beautiful areas in Tuscany and our favourite.