San Gimignano is a small town in the heart of central Tuscany- 38 km to Siena, 59 km to Florence – and it is an outright gem of Italian medieval art and history. Declared as aUNESCO site, it embodies the hub of art and culture of this area.
Perhaps the flavour that most represents San Gimignano is the Vernaccia and Saffron Rabbit, a very tasty and traditional dish based on stuffed rabbit meat with wine and seasoned with the local saffron. The wine is obviously the famous Vernaccia of San Gimignano, a white wine DOC (i.e. of Certified Origin), with its typical strong and fruity notes it's perfect for cooking meat dishes thanks to its strong taste.
San Gimignano is famous all over the world especially for its 16 towers rising up to Tuscan skyes giving the impression and the impact of a medieval Manhattan at everyone's sight. Originally, the towers were 72 and were raised by the local wealthy families, competing in height to show their power. Another masterpiece you can't miss, is the Dome, called La Collegiata, a building of the 11th century showing also many paintings of the 14th century.
In the shops of the town selling local products, you can find the saffron, produced in San Gimignano since the Middle Ages. This spice is so precious that it is called “red gold”: 150 flowers must be harvested and handeled to get only a gram of powder.
You can't miss the Wine Museum by the Parco della Rocca, a wine shop more than a museum. A tip? Take a moment to relax on the terrace, taste a glass of Vernaccia and enjoy an amazing view. Alternately, you could attend a course on Tuscan cuisine or join a wine and food guided tour. Just ask for the Agriturismo Casanova di Pescille, just out of town.
Az. Agr. Casanova di Pescille
Loc. Pescille, 53037 San Gimignano (Siena)
Tel. +39 (0)577 941902, Website
Photo courtesy Marco Lazzaroni, Motumboe