Tuscany is a region rich in culture, art, wonderful landscapes and offers one of the most typical and appreciated cuisines in the world. There is so much to see, that when you are visiting for the first time, you have to select some of the typical Tuscan things that interest us most.
The Tuscan hills
The Tuscan hills , especially in the summer months , are a recurring subject for painters and photographers, because they reflect in the best way the spirit of ancient tradition tuscany .
Sprinkled with very isolated cottages and farmhouses , they are usually used for agriculture or viticulture, with the production of some of the most notorious grape varieties in the world .
In summer everything turns yellow and green, producing the typical glimpse of a warm, peaceful and wonderful Tuscan summer. You can choose a perfect holiday villa in Tuscany to enjoy the hills to the fullest.
Tuscan red wine
Surely Tuscan wine is one of the most valuable and appreciated in the world, thanks to a perfect climate for the ripening of the grapes. In particular, the Tuscan red enjoys an almost legendary aura, thus becoming synonymous with wine of excellence all over the world , certainly not by chance.
Of typical Tuscan red wines we find different types, all associated with one of the splendid grapes and production areas. Some of the most famous are:
- Brunello di Montalcino;
- Bolgheri (including the famous Sassicaia);
- Chianti, a complex, full-bodied and truly irresistible wine.
We find the most famous vines in the Maremma area (Bolgheri) and the Tuscan hinterland, between Florence, Arezzo and Siena (Chianti), where we can taste the best wines in the wonderful wineries of these zones.
To spend a proper Tuscan summer , you can’t miss a nice glass of red when the sun goes down!
Versilia is a very extensive coastal area , covering the entire province of Lucca, from Torre del Lago to Forte dei Marmi and a little further on.
It is an extremely lively area in the summer period , full of events, nightlife and shops of all kinds, where surfboards, vinyl records, but also big names of the clothing.
The organization of the bathing establishments, which are among the most advanced in all of Italy, is certainly appreciable. You go from freer and wilder areas between Torre del Lago and Viareggio, up to luxurious bathrooms in Forte dei Marmi.
The sea is perhaps not among the most evocative of Italy, with mainly sandy and not very varied coasts , but the beaches are well cared for and if you are looking for the mix between relaxation and tourist offer , you will certainly not be disappointed in Versilia.
The Tuscan aperitif
In Tuscany there is a real cult of the aperitif, the “aperitivo”. In many Italian cities, this consists of a spritz accompanied by some potato chips or, at best, some canapé.
In Tuscany, on the other hand, a healthy competition has been created between clubs, hotels and farmhouses to offer increasingly extraordinary aperitifs . We go from the typical Tuscan cutting boards , strictly accompanied by a paired wine or beer, to the more well-stocked buffets , with plenty of pasta, risotto and main courses.
Virtually every pub in Tuscany offers together with its drinks a full-bodied aperitif from 6pm onwards , in some cases also based on pizza, scones and cecina. For lovers of ethnic cuisine, there is no shortage of sushi-based aperitifs in the most refined places in the city. In many cases, the Tuscan aperitif, for its abundance and quality, also replaces dinner , perfectly marrying the concept of aperitif.
The cacciucco is a Tuscan specialty that you can taste properly only in this region.
This is a particular fish soup, a single dish, very rich in fish and really delicious. There are two main versions: the cacciucco alla livornese and the cacciucco alla viareggina .
In the traditional recipe , cacciucco brings together 13 different species of fish , including octopus, crustaceans and molluscs, redfish and cuttlefish. It is served with toasted bread and garlic, for a truly special culinary experience.
An ideal match for cacciocco is, needless to say, red wine, such as Bolgheri .
Tuscan pecorino cheese
The pecorino is another of the specialties that can be appreciated to perfection in the Tuscan countryside, perhaps accompanied by an excellent Chianti.
It is a PDO product , of protected origin, for several decades.
The peculiarity of this cheese is undoubtedly its delicacy , which makes it perfect to be enjoyed alone or to cook special dishes.
Depending on the maturation time, the pecorino looks like fresh, matured or 12 months. The fresh Tuscan pecorino is more delicate, more intense and full of fragrances on 12 months, for two different but equally satisfying gastronomic experiences.