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Chianti restaurants - please help us choose...

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Aug 14th, 2006, 06:58 AM
  #1
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Chianti restaurants - please help us choose...

OK, need again help from the experts please  .. picking up our rental car in Florence at around noon. The plan is to drive through Chianti (S222) and have lunch somewhere in the area. We would like to stop in Greve, maybe Panzano and Castellina, planning on getting to our accommodation that day near S. Gimignano around 7 PM. We need a place for lunch that offers really nice food (although not necessary expensive), preferably off the beaten track/ countryside location but not involving long detour from S222 to get there, and with seating outside in a nice garden (nice views a bonus). Going with a 3-year old so somewhere with a steep cliff/ unsecured balcony is not good (as much as we would appreciate the chance that would give us to enjoy an adult lunch ;o)

These are the places we like:
-La Cantinetta di Rignana (near Greve) http://www.lacantinettadirignana.it/.../chisiamo.html
-La Castellana in Montefioralle http://www.ristorantelacastellana.it/
-Ostería Le Panzanelle in Lucarelli
-Osteria alla Piazza north of Castellina
-Ristoro di Lamole

Any comments would be greatly appreciated!! Thank you
-Flor
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Aug 14th, 2006, 09:06 AM
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I think Oteria alla Piazza is just what you're looking for. We had a wonderful Sunday lunch there, sitting outside under the trees. It was essential to have reservations, since it was very busy. Outside there's plenty of good play room for a 3-year. Lamole, I believe, is up a steep road/cliff.
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Aug 14th, 2006, 09:44 AM
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Wow!
Great choices.
One of our favorite northern Tuscan restaurant is Castellina, Osteria Alla Piazza. We've only eaten dinner there,but never skip it. Not cheap,but not crazy expensive (about 130E-150E/couple-dinner). It's a beautiful spot with vineyard/country views.
My favorite lunch stop (ate lunch there twicw last year) ia Taverna del Guerrino in the quaint town of Montefioralle.
The menu is very simple and classic Tuscan. Momma does the cooking and dad helps her. Their son (the one who understands some English) waits on you as you take in a fantastic view (no safety issues). much less expensive than all the others you mentioned,but wonderful.
Possibly the very best lunches we've ever had in Tuscany is at Antica Trattoria La Torre in Radda.No views,but amazing food. You will need a reservation,it's that good.
No matter your choice, you are making me hungry thinking of all these nice restaurants.
Enjoy!


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Aug 17th, 2006, 02:22 PM
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You might also check the website Divina Cucina for Judy Witt's restaurant suggestions in the Chianti. I noticed a few weeks ago that she mentions new owners took over Il Vescovino in Panzano last year and she highly recommends it. I last dined there in 2003 - lovely views from the terrace, but mediocre food.

Judy lives in the Chianti and teaches cooking classes in Florence.

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Aug 17th, 2006, 04:44 PM
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I can still remember the delicious meal that we ate several years ago at La Castellana in Montefioralle.

However, since we ate dinner and ate inside, I can't tell you about the outside lunchtime dining/child safety issues!
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Aug 17th, 2006, 09:47 PM
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Last year we stayed near Greve and ate at several places you mention. Taverna del Guerrino ( Montefioralle ) was a favourite and not too far off S222. You need to park and walk into the old town through a narrow cobbled street. Lovely Tuscan food.
Ristoro di Lamole is wonderful too but as Marija says a bit steep for a 3 yr old and a winding road. La Cantina di Rignana was also great, but not very close to Greve and down a long dirt road.
Can I come too?
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Aug 18th, 2006, 02:53 AM
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Of course you can come jillyf!! ;o)

We really like Taverna del Guerrino, but just realized we're going to be there on a Monday, the only day there are closed...

Thank you all, the other suggestions sound really good, although will need to check because a lot of them are closed on Mondays ...


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