this is a little bit of a longer post (we couldn't decide between the 1800 pictures we took!) so you might just want to open a bottle of rosé and pour yourself a glass before you keep on reading. just a friendly suggestion, though.
this summer we spent a beautiful week at fattoria la vialla in tuscany, near arezzo. we used to spend every summer there with family and friends but hadn't been for a while up until this year. and going back brought up so many memories. the best thing is: nothing changed! everything is just as beautiful, authentic and idyllic as we remember it.
fattoria la vialla is one of the oldest and largest organic and biodynamic farms in tuscany and is family-run by the lo franco family since 1978. they produce wine, pasta, homemade sauces, biscuits, bread and have huge crop fields where they grow everything themselves. the premises (3316 acres!) include 21 beautifully restored stone houses that serve as holiday homes, vineyards, olive groves, an equestrian centre, a farm shop where you can buy all the homemade produce and of course a gigantic wine cellar. it's paradise!
we love the simple interiors - there were a few pieces we would have gladly taken back home with us.
one of our highlights was getting up early and watching the bread being made. first we got to see how the dough is made in the bakery (using even their own flour!) - it's quite mesmerizing to watch how skillfully and quickly the loafs are shaped. all the bread, foccaccia and pizza is baked on- sight in their big stone oven - just like it has been ever since the beginnings of fattoria la vialla. that dedication to tradition and handicraft is what really fascinates us most about this special place. you can always be sure that everything is made with the very best ingredients and the biggest portion of love.
and honestly, there's not much that tops a slice of their pizza fresh out of the oven for breakfast..
we have so many memories of the barn at la vialla - it was where larissa took her very first lessons and even kerstin used to ride the horses there, something none of us could imagine today. you can take lessons or go on a hack through the beautiful tuscan landscape. sadly we missed out this year as it was just too hot but it's definitely something that should be on your list if you go.
luckily, no one at la vialla has to go hungry - or thirsty for that matter! on several days of the week they offer lunch and dinner at the main house, beautifully set under a huge oak tree with aperitivo and a four course menu. though we should add that just the aperitivo is a whole meal in itself. you can try all their amazing homemade charcuterie, antipasti, pizza and bruschette all while tasting some of their best wines. and that is before the actual courses. so do come hungry and prepare to roll home!
it was so hot during our stay that we spent most of the afternoon lounging in the shade, reading or cooling down in the beautiful stone plunge pool that came with our house.
..just before we were on our way to another wine-filled evening.
on our last night there was a big dinner at la viallas very own museum with aperitivo (of course!), lots of wine and really good food - there was even a midnight pasta after pudding. all the guests got a candle lit tour of the museum that documents the farms' history and gives a little insight on how people used to live at la vialla. as it got dark we had an open-air screening of old italian films on a real film projector that still runs with coal and was operated by one of la viallas first employees. we couldn't have thought of a better ending to our stay!
a huge thank you la vialla, the lo francos and especially annette, who took such wonderful care of us, for making our stay so magical and memorable. we'll see you all next year for the olive harvesting and we are already looking so much forward to it.