We had a lazy morning – I didn’t even walk. For shame! We had decided to go to Mazzolla for lunch, to Trattoria Albana. Niamh and I had eaten there before, so we wanted to show her sister what a Tuscan lunch in middle of nowhere (or a small hamlet!) would be like. The food there is great, and Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon filmed an episode of their series, ‘A Trip to Italy’ there.
But before that, we visited Vanna in Colpa del Vento. She is a lovely artist, who paints without too many references, and her stuff is colourful and earthy. Niamh’s sister bought a piece and Vanna persuaded her that she could carry it though security onto her flight (and she was right!). She was delighted we bought from her. We left the piece there for collection after lunch.
It’s only about 8km, but due to twisty Tuscan roads it can take 20 minutes or so to get there. We parked in the small free car park, and got out in blasting heat, and were met with a wall of cicada-screeching. The town is on a promontory, and has a few points where you can snap some amazing views of the farmed hills below.
Unfortunately, I think we fell foul of the August curse, because, despite what the website says (open every day for lunch), the place was closed. A lady was sitting outside reading a book, and she confirmed this with me, with a shoulder shrug, before getting back to her book. What a pity.
We had a couple of backup plans, though! We knew that there were a few other places on the way to Colle di Val d’Elsa on the SS68, and drove past all of them, before we settled on Locanda Il Boschetto.
We got there, and went to the outdoor seating area, where it looked like we’d be waiting behind a glamorous couple for a table. They happened to be smoking, and when the waiter approached them, he offered to look for a table for them. They agreed, and after a few moments of searching, during which time I saw our chances of grabbing a table ourselves becoming more and more remote, another couple at a table for four got the attention of the waiter. The girl of the smoking couple ‘waiting’ began to look both amused and chagrined. The couple at the table told the waiter that the smokers were already with them, and that he had seated them (if my Italian was correct). The smoking couple had a bit of a laugh at the waiter’s expense, who in turn had a good laugh at himself. We got a good chuckle out of it too (maybe you had to be there).
Anyway, we sat down, got drinks and ordered the food. For starters, the ladies shared an antipasti plate, and I had a medley of crostini.
During the starters, we noticed that a lot of cars were driving in, but the occupants were turned away by the waiter. So it was a popular place, and we were dead lucky to get a spot. There was a seating area above which looked empty to me, but I suppose, they also have to seat people based on the cooking and waiting staff to produce food in a timely manner, and in such a way as they could close for a few hours after lunch time.
After, I had tagliatelle alla boscaiola – basically, a sausage and mushroom sauce. It was nice enough, but not the nicest I’ve had.
And then this little beauty (lemon curd cake) for dessert.
I took a couple of shots near the restaurant, as it was beside MonteRosola winery, which has one of Volterra’s strange scuptures. A sort of squashed ‘O’.
We got home after being stuffed, and grabbed the artwork from Vanna (whose coffee I’m told is amazing!). Despite being full, I still had room for a granita!
Niamh’s sister went out to explore the town on her own, while we vegged.
What did we do at night? Well, that’s a mystery sadly! I only have this photo as evidence, but I’m pretty sure we must have eaten simply at home, rather than go out.
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