If a Hollywood set designer was asked to create the Tuscany of our dreams, chances are good that they would erect a model of the medieval town of Gaiole in Chianti, the small vineyard dominated village nestled fifteen kilometers north of the provincial capital of Siena and only forty kilometers southeast of Florence.
In 1215, Gaiole became the central market town for the small villages of Radda, Castellina in Chianti and the nearby castles of Vertine and Barbischio. Today, with 2,800 friendly inhabitants, two fabulous medieval castle ripped right out of a fairy tale book , Castello di Brolio and Castello di Meleto, this tiny town is home to some of the best wines in all of Tuscany, if not Italy.
The prestigious Villa Capannelle, owned by James Sherwood the founder and principal shareholder of the Orient-Express Hotels, produces some of the tastiest wines and a visit to the villa’s cellars for a tasting of the villa’s 50&50 is a de rigeur stop for oenophiles. Many of these wine lovers elect to vacation at the outstanding air conditioned seven bedroom Villa Capannelle and TuscanDream is proud to represent the estate both as a B&B or as a private villa. Guests can rent one to seven bedrooms on a nightly or weekly basis and Capanelle is the perfect venue for medium sized weddings for forty guests.
The town’s impressive Ricasoli Collection is a museum devoted to rare artworks telling the story of the Ricasoli family, Medici family allies who were active politicians and patrons of the arts during both the Renaissance and the Italian Unification under Garibaldi. The museum is open from Tuesday to Sunday.
There are several nearby outstanding restaurants which we highly recommend, including The Osteria del Castello at Castello di Brolio as well as the restaurant of Castello di Spaltenna, Il Pievano where you will discover how tradition and respect for the seasonal products can match with creativity and originality, in an enogastronomic journey that it is worth alone your stay in Chianti.
Gaiole offers everything one could hope for in a romantic Tuscany vacation and TuscanDream is proud to help you with your travel plans!