Politics and the scourge of the left couldn’t have been further from my mind while exploring Tuscany.
Consequently, the purpose of this post is to recommend the magnificent Siena House, run by Malvin and Amanda Tyler. Located in the heart of Tuscany, this four-room B&B is the perfect hub for exploring the region and is a stone’s throw away from:
A beautiful hilltop town with spectacular views, charming streets and a lovely town square. I am reliably told that Under the Tuscan Sun was filmed here (if that kind of thing matters to you).
A delightful little walled town that needs only half an hour to explore with a Gelato in your hand.
A magnificent walled city dating back to well before Christ, with some amazing medieval and Gothic structures.
A larger and more industrial style town. While it won’t top anyone’s list of favourites, it still has its own charm and is worth a quick stop over.
Montepulciano (13km) and Pienza (20km) are also in very close proximity. Regrettably, there was not enough time to visit these towns (on this occasion).
The incomparable Florence is also only a 90 minute drive away.
Siena House itself
It is impossible to list all things there are to love about Siena House (which even has pinball machines and an occasional cinema for any rainy days) and this part of the world generally – so I’ll simply mention my top 3 in no particular order:
The food in Tuscany is in a world of it’s own. Whether it’s the fresh fruit and vegetables, limitless selection of delicious cured meats, hard cheeses or wines, you will not experience anything like this anywhere else in the world.
As for Siena House, it will, hands down, provide you with the best holiday breakfast you’ve ever had in your life – and I say this having experienced dozens of the finest hotel breakfast buffets around the world. Everything is freshly made from scratch and either grown on site or sourced from neighbouring farms. It’s simply incredible and I defy anyone to find a better way to start the day.
(NB: the above picture does not show the platter of cured meat and sheep’s cheese that’s also included).
For the rest of your eating requirements, Siena House has a fully optioned, self-service summer kitchen and coal fired Weber barbeque (trust me when I say it’s a snip to light up) which you can use at your leisure. For the necessary ingredients, there’s a local supermarket full of amazing local produce (and wine) just 10 minutes away.
There are also a few great restaurants in very close proximity (within 1-2km). The highlight of these is easily La Toraia – a farm and steakhouse with a signature 1.4kg sirloin/fillet T-bone that is simply out of this world. But don’t take my word for it – I am informed that La Toraia is also where the Prince of Japan was taken to when Italy wanted to showcase its finest beef. The livestock – which you can see on the drive up to the restaurant – are also albino for good measure.
The views and surrounds
(All taken from the grounds of Siena House).
You didn’t think I’d seriously try to describe this in words did you?
Malvin and Amanda are an encyclopedia of knowledge of the local area and great hosts who spare no effort in making you feel welcome. On top of this, all the fellow guests I met were fantastic people who were great to talk to, cook dinners and share stories with.
If you find yourself travelling to Tuscany, do yourself a big favour and check in to this place (best to do direct via email).
Andrew Bolt’s new book
While I’m at it, some of you may have seen on Andrew Bolt’s blog that I have taken his new book along with me on TMR’s European tour. Below are some more pictures of this particular copy of his book having the time of its life at Siena House and Vico Equense on the Bay of Naples.
Andrew’s book is a great read and can be ordered here for $30.00. In addition to the free postage, the Bolt Bulletin will also be emailed to you free of charge.
The views and opinions given in this post are entirely my own. Neither Siena House nor Andrew Bolt have solicited or paid for this post in any way.
Your experience with either or both of Siena House and Andrew Bolt’s book may differ from the 10/10 experiences I had.