Surprises abound in life, and this one was a good one!
I was driving on Chianti Road, on my way from Florence to Panzano, to visit my friends Kim and Dario, and I got hungry. Although it was after 2 o’clock which in Italy is late for lunch, I was hoping to find something. I was not looking for a full meal, just a light one and a glass of wine.
In any case, I saw a turn of the road to the left and decided to follow the narrow winding road.
After a couple of kilometers I arrived at a beautiful spot on top of a hill.
I parked the car and went to explore the building.
It was an old residence, and had the name “Castello Vicchiomaggio”.
It even had a chapel inside.
I went to the dining area, where a few people where finishing their meal.
The kind waiter informed me that the kitchen was closed but they could get me a salad and some antipasti. Perfect!
The last guests left, and I had this huge area for myself.
A wonderful fresh salad, was accompanied by prosciuto, salumi and pecorino.
The wine was produced by the owner of the castello, John Matta, and it was fantastic for lunch.
The waiter finished his work and came to play the piano in the dining area. He started with some light tunes I did not know, We started talking and the discussion came to opera. All of a sudden, he played “Nessun Dorma”, the famous aria of Puccini’s Turandot. He smiled and thanked me for listening.
On my way out I checked the front side of the castello, and saw the pool and the magnificent view!
What a surprise!
P.S. I later checked on the internet and saw that John Matta is one of the best winemakers in the area.