Back to Back Issues Page
Discover Tuscany!, Issue #019-- "Doggy Bag" Issue!
October 10, 2004

Discover Tuscany! is a FREE monthly Newsletter dedicated to helping you get the best from your holiday in Tuscany.

Ciao Ragazze,
Well, hope you had a belter of a summer. Down here in darkest Chiantishire things are finally cooling down after a scorcher of a summer largin' it with heaps of you from all over the shop, folks from places as exotic as Kirkintilloch (wee souls, went home with skint knees), Ratby (midnight surfing in drag!) and downunder Oz (arrived on Monday got married on Wednesday)! We‘ve played ibbly dibbly with the hillies, eaten frogs, snails and horse pizza with the billys but narrowly missed the hillbillies (sorry, maybe next time). We’ve watched men in tights waving flags, sang along with a bunch of Frenchmen driving a bandstand and played a local game where the prize was a pig’s leg. We sampled some fine wines!! with Big G, Shaza, Mayzee and Bi Bi (must be a drag when your family keeps getting mistaken for the latest gangsta rap crew from an L.A.housing project) but the word on the street is, the tubby one is a sure bet for the Christmas No.1 slot, remember you heard it here (even though you haven’t a scooby what I’m on about)

What you may ask did they all have in common? (gangsta rap, pig’s legs, sufing in drag, I know, obvious isn’t it) Easy really; they all loved it so much they didn’t want to go home, they wanted to stuff their pockets full of it and some of them even said they would scream and scream until they were allowed to buy their own bit of it! So Garcon! Can we have a doggy bag? we want to take some home for later!

If you don’t quite get my drift, what I’m ranting on about is – how can you recreate your own little corner of Tuscany at home. I’m talking food, wine oil etc. pasta makers, coffee machines, ice cream makers or even buy your own Tuscan vineyard (1 row!). For those of you who really want to go bush, how you can buy your own little pile of rocks to renovate (you may even get a Channel 4 tv crew taging along!).

So, stretch out in a darkened room, slip off your D & G sarong (mystery – why do women with large bottoms wrap a fluorescent curtain round it to divert your attention away?), pour yourself a tumbler of Strega (that yellow stuff they drink in “The Godfather) and enjoy the “ Doggy Bag” issue of Discover Tuscany.

Intro & thanks
Food – where to find top Italian nosh online
Restaurants – USA restaurant, deli database
Wine - wines of Tuscany online store
Products – where to find ice cream makers, coffee machines etc
Wine share - buy your own vineyard
Live abroad – which guide to living abroad
Advice on buying a house in Tuscany
Hot property deals

Thanks for subscribing

To “DISCOVER TUSCANY!” the Newsletter. We hope you enjoy reading it and find the information and advice useful when planning your holiday in Tuscany. We have lots of great ideas for the content but if have any ideas, comments or suggestions, please feel free to get in touch. We’d love to hear from you, just email us. Maybe there is something you need to know before you arrive or a great tip you’d like to pass on after your holiday, (when you get home don’t forget to sign our guest book on the site to tell us about your holiday and upload your favourite holiday snaps!).

First, where can you get genuine Italian Nosh online?
A few places that we like are - La Cornucopia in Pienza – a superb shop who also sell online. They stock a wide range of the very best wines, pasta, sauces, honey, oil, vinegar and more.

One of our favourite online Italian deli’s is Valvona & Crolla based in Edinburgh - They stock a wide selection of wines, their cookshop has Italian kitchen goods. The deli has Italian products and even fresh bread. Throughout the year they organise cooking and tasting events (book early, they sell out quick). They have a selection of cookery books. They also prepare Christmas hampers and can send gift certificates as presents.

For those of you in N. America, a superb website/magazine called Italian Cooking & Living is packed full of info. They have a wine club, olive oil club, cheese club and a unique search engine for recipes, restaurants (USA only)and italian delis (USA only). It also has great articles on Italian lifestyle, food, wine etc.

Where can you find a wide selection of Tuscan wines online? -
Wines of Tuscany is packed full of interesting articles and the wine shop delivers Top Tuscan wines worldwide.

Want to make real Italian pasta, ice cream or coffee at home?
A superb online store called La Gondola sells a vast range of genuine Italian, stylish products (go on, treat yourself to one of those Alessi cone shaped kettles with the little bird whistle or that cool Philip Starke juice squeezer). Order online and the goods are delivered to your door.

A recent survey says that “owning their own Italian vineyard” is in most folks Top Ten “things they dream about doing”. (the others involved Monica Bellucci, chocolate sauce and other stuff not suitable for a high class newsletter such as this) A novel idea from a UK based company called Wineshare means you can actually own your own row of vines in either Italy or France. For a very reasonable fee you can have your own supply of top quality wine, you can even help pick your own grapes if you want, they also organise dinners in the UK, France and Italy. Would make a great Christmas, birthday or wedding present.

Lots of people when they visit Tuscany feel so much at home that they decide that they’d like to invest in their own apartment or farmhouse. It’s possible (we did it!) but it’s best to get good advice and local help.

The "Which?" Guide to Buying Property Abroad ("Which?" Consumer Guides) by Jeremy Davies (Amazon) is worth reading to give you an overview of what is involved.
Channel 4 has produced a number of TV programmes on moving abroad and their site is full of info and advice.

If you’d like some help in finding your Italian dream home, try the UK based company Italy Assist who can help you find the right property and also have contacts if you need help with the renovations etc (note: I haven’t used their services but they look worth checking out) In the USA try Italy House Scout who have a similar service.

For those of you who are searching for a “hot investment” an interesting site giving information on properties for investment worldwide is - Hot Property Alert . You have to subscribe to their newsletter but the first issue is free. You might find the dream house you’ve been searching for.

Lastly, we live here, if you are looking for something in particular, drop us a line, we sometimes hear of things on the grapevine!

Well, I reckon I’ve sorted you out with a source for wine, pasta, coffee, oil, your own vineyard and even a little holiday gaff in the sun! Don’t say I’m not good to you all! (sorry, I can't help with Monica Bellucci as well)

By the way, congratulations to Maria & Matt from Manchester and weren’t the bridesmaids beautiful!

Until next time,

Ciao Ciao


Contact us at
“a corner of paradise in the heart of Italy”

© 2004 All Rights Reserved

Back to Back Issues Page