Ristorante Pizzeria Malborghetto!

There are such restaurants that you want to come back and eat there again as soon as possible. Isn’t like that?

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One of them is for me and can be also for you Ristorante Pizzeria Malborghetto (http://ristorantemalborghet.wix.com/malborghetto#!home/c21p) that I want to strongly recommend you today!

I know that for tourists the worst thing is looking for a restaurant especially when we are hungry. That is why you should reach there . . . Because why looking for when it is absolutely not necessary when you are in Siena.

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Ristorante Pizzeria Malborghetto
(Via di Porta Giustizia 6) is situated in the center of Siena, just behind Piazza del Campo, very close to Orto de’Pecci, in a charming and calm area. Only here you can admire unique and picturesque views such a for example Torre di Mangia.

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But let’s write about the food. Here you have an opportunity to taste a big variety of tasty dishes typical for Tuscany: starters; first and second courses (rich in meat and fish); see food specialties.

DSC04930It is obvious that you can’t miss here a possibility to enjoy an excellent Italian pizza. I can say without doubts that Malborghetto offers one of the best pizza in Siena. I personally recommend you my favorite one that is “Malborghetto” (with Tomato, Mozzarella Cheese, Truffle, Porcini Mushrooms, Grana Cheese).

You can also order and try Ciaccini or Calzoni ? It is of course your choice!

And this everything is with a big choice of local wines . . .

I am sure that you will be charmed by the interior of the restaurant like also by the abloom external part the best for me because of the view!

What is very important I can truly guarantee you that you will be very satisfied with management, chef and waitress that create very friendly atmosphere. DSC04956

At the end it remains nothing else like to wish you to spend some unforgettable moments in Ristorante Pizzeria Malborghetto!! 🙂

Buon appetito!

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Prodotti tipici !

DSC03871This time is something about Siena’s typical food on request Genevieve Hassall (www.thewanderbug.com) that started her second website Global Gourmand (www.theglobalgourmand.com). The aim of this website is to help travellers before a trip, to discover the food of the place. In her E-mail she asked me to write a guest post about the food in Siena.
For me it is a great idea. I know that all of you know very well Italian pasta, pizza, coffee or gelato. However knowledge about Siena’s delicacies is not so common. What is more it is very useful to have this knowledge when you are here. So let’s start!

1. Ricciarelli di Siena

DSC02029Ricciarelli are biscuits with origin in the Tuscan city of Siena dating to the 14th century. According to legend they were introduced by Ricciardetto della Gherardesca in his castle near Volterra.
But let’s come back to the present and our reality! What’s the recipe? And here lucky me! My favorite almond is a main ingredient. Thus the unique biscuits are made using an almond base with sugar, honey and egg white. Traditionally almonds are ground with a milling machine. After this they are formed into mostly oval-shaped cookies, and then are left for 2 days to be baked. Their surface is usually lightly sprinkled with confectioner’s sugar.
Yes they are sweet, but I can guarantee you that one biscuit will be not enough for you. Only their price (small box costs about 6EUR) or calories (about 500 kcal per 100 gr) can stop you but maybe it will be not a big deal for you. The best for sure is a soft heart of Ricciarelli that melts in your mouth. Welcome to the seventh heaven!

Formally time for Ricciarelli is Christmas . . . but if you are in Siena you will notice that their best time is ALWAYS.

2. Pici di Siena

Pici – type of hand-made pasta, similar to spaghetti but larger and for me much tastier that originates in the province of Siena.DSC02233
The recipe is extremely simple: water, flour and very little, if any, egg. The taste is other than normal pasta and a bit hard to describe. But you know what . . . it is not necessary to describe. It is better that you become convinced of its amazing taste alone!
You can eat this pasta at a variety of ways i.e.: briciole – with breadcrumbs; aglione – with spicy garlic tomato sauce (my favorite); boscaiola – with porcini mushrooms; ragù – a meat based sauce.
Pici you can buy in Siena everywhere – supermarkets or small shops. It is more expensive then another pasta (even four times) but is unique and I am sure you can’t find it in your place! That’s why you should find it here! Price per 500 grams is about 2-3 EUR. How I convinced recently it is also possible to get truffle Pici.

3. Panforte di Siena

DSC02282Panforte di Siena – is another our local delicacy, also the most popular in Christmas time but available throughout the year.
Panforte is called as a traditional Italian dessert that contains fruits (for example candied orange and cedro peel) and nuts (mostly my almonds). It is derived of course from Siena. Can you imagine that from 13th century. It is like tasting history! What is more ‘’(…)documents from 1205 show that panforte was paid to the monks and nuns of a local monastery as a tax or tithe which was due on the seventh of February that year(…)’’(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Panforte).
Panforte (literally “strong bread”) has very characteristic look – thick and dense cake. And it seems hard to prepare. But as everything to eat in Italy it is simple to make (fortunately)!
Thus sugar is melted in honey and various nuts, fruits and spices are mixed together with flour. This everything is then baked in a flat pan. So easy, isn’t it? The taste is for me unique and totally priceless. For sure the most impact have spices and perfect quantity of ingredients. In Siena it is sometimes said that Panforte has to have seventeen different ingredients that reflects the number of Contrade.
Here as you will for sure notice our Panforte occurs in a variety of sizes, tastes and wrappings. That is why price is different. Certainly it is not a cheap tidbit! But as you can guess for sure it is worth its price! What is more you shouldn’t even consider how much you have to pay! Then you can enjoy the uncommon taste with for example cup of coffee or glass of wine!
Trust me without it you shouldn’t leave Siena.

4. Il Panettone!

Il Panettone is tradition for Christmas and New Year. DSC02794
It is sweet bread loaf from Milan and is a symbol of this city. But it is popular not only in Italy but also, inter alia in Spain, Portugal, Brazil, Peru, Malta, Germany and Switzerland!
As I wrote the cake is derived from Milan, from the time of Ludovico il Moro, and it is still produced according to the 500 years ago. In Milan until 900 were among many bakers and confectioners to produce the cake, but today large industrial firms that are located in Italy produce il Panettone. However in Milan are still many artisans who produce a cake according to the traditional recipe.
Il Panettone has characteristic shape (cupola shape) and packaging (1kg weight, in tall decorated boxes).
Unfortunately preparing process lasts long and involves the curing of the dough (made with water, flour, butter, eggs) which is acidic. The proofing process takes some days and gives the cake its characteristic fluffiness.
The best what you can find is of course inside: candied fruits(citron, orange); raisins ; lemon zest as well as chocolate. The result is commonly referred panetton CANDIO.
What is more here and there il Panettone can be served with crema di mascarpone.
Panettone you can find easily in supermarkets or smaller shops. You should only remember that cake is generally only available seasonally.
Then only get your slice of this dainty and enjoy the great taste with a glass of sweet wine (for example Asti or Moscato d’Asti) or sweet hot beverages.

5. Chianti

DSC03089Wine that is produced in the Chianti region, is extending roughly over the two main city provinces of Florence and Siena. And certainly it is known around the world.
Can you imagine that the earliest documentation of a “Chianti wine” dates back to the thirteenth century!? Just then merchants in the nearby townships of Castellina, Gaiole and Radda formed the Lega del Chianti that was formed to produce and promote the local wine.
What is more and probably you don’t know is the fact that the earliest incarnation of Chianti was as a white wine. And by the eighteenth century, Chianti was widely recognized as a red wine.
By the late twentieth century, Chianti was often associated with basic Chianti sold in a squat bottle enclosed in a straw basket, called a fiasco. However, during the same period, a group of ambitious producers began working outside the boundaries of DOC regulations to make what they believed would be a higher quality style of Chianti. Important here was year 1984, in which Chianti obtained the denomination D.O.C.G. (Denominazione d’Origine Controllata e Garantita) which is the highest type of protection and recognition for quality Italian wines.
You can’t miss occasion to try Chianti Classico – premium Chianti wines that tend to be medium-bodied with firm tannins and medium-high to high acidity. Floral, cherry and light nutty notes are characteristic aromas with the wines expressing more notes on the mid-palate and finish than at the front of the mouth.
Since 1996 the blend for Chianti and Chianti Classico has been 75-100% Sangiovese, up to 10% Canaiolo and up to 20% of any other approved red grape variety such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot or Syrah. Since 2006, the use of white grape varieties such as Malvasia and Trebbiano have been prohibited in Chianti Classico that must have a minimum alcohol level of at least 12% with a minimum of 7 months aging in oak.
So now it only remains to enjoy the taste of this Tuscan treasure!

6. Cavallucci di Siena and Cantuccini

These are another (characteristic for Christmas) so popular in Siena pastry made with anise, almonds, candied fruits, coriander, and flour. It has an Italian origin which translates approximately to “Little Horses”. What is more traditionally is used Tuscan millefiori honey as an essential element for the biscuits.
The history of Cavallucci dates back to the 16th century. Many theories are associated with the origin of its name. According to the most popular version of the story, Cavallucci was served to travelers on horseback as a source of nourishment for long trips.
On the other hand different versions have said that these sweets were the usual snack of servants who worked in horse stables of rich Italian aristocrats, in a city which gained its fame for horse racing.
Strong relationship with the horse emphasizes the fact that these cookies were originally imprinted with the image of horse.
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Cantuccini are twice-baked cookies originating in the Italian city of Prato. The biscuits are oblong-shaped almond biscuits, made dry and crunchy through cutting the loaf of dough while still hot and fresh from baking in the oven.
And the most important is as always the recipe. Ingredients are: flour, sugar, eggs, pine nuts; and almonds that are not roasted or skinned. What is more the traditional recipe uses no form of yeast or fat. After a dough is cooked twice: once in slab form, and after cutting in sliced form, with the second baking defining how hard the biscotti are. And then is the biggest pleasure – taste. Cantuccini can be served after dessert with orange juice or with one of Tuscan wines. But also with coffee. Your choice!

For me and I guess not only, travel isn’t just only sightseeing. It is also (how important) tasting the place that we visit. It is priceless to relish local, typical goodies as well as to buy and take some of them home. Isn’t it a great souvenir?
So what remains? Wish you buon appetito! Especially here in Siena!

Magdalena
http://justvisitsiena.com/

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Pizza in Siena = Il pomodorino !

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I know that last time was about food, very special for me . . . and as I see not only for me . . . chocolate!

Also today about food, but two difference: it is not dolce, and it is dainty for Italy . . . so can be only Pizza !

You know very well (when you have been here), or you will learn very fast (when you will be here) that in Italy, in Siena you can get pizza or even one piece of pizza everywhere. It is a good idea to eat something fast for example during your sightseeing.

However sometime you want to eat Italian pizza not in rush (as a fast lunch). Isn’t it great to taste it with a glass of red wine in one of our cozy place!?

That’s why I want to suggest you today . . . Il pomodorino (http://www.ilpomodorino.com/)! There we go.

And I can say without doubts that Il pomodorino offers one of the best pizzas in Siena, that is baked in wood-fuelled oven in compliance with the dictates of the Napolitan Pizza Academy. To prepare every pizza the freshest, top quality ingredients are used, such as Buffalo mozzarella D.O.P. from Campania.

Menu is divided on Le Bianche (white pizza) and Le Rosse (red pizza). Don’t forget only about wine! You can find there a vast selection of Italian wines as well as of international beers and champagnes.

What is more after pizza you can (if you have still some place in your stomach) take the extensive and constantly varied range of dessert that is skillfully prepared by one of Salerno’s historical patisserie shops.

I am sure that you will be charmed by the interior of the restaurant (perfect for romantic dinner) like also by the external part. The second is my favorite. You can ask why. . . Because of the view of course, the best I guess in Siena. The restaurant is situated in one of the most charming corners overlooking a view of inimitable beauty comprising the cathedral, the del Mangia tower and the basilica of San Domenico (Via Camporegio, 13).
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Il pomodorino is opened daily from 19:00 to 1:00. What is more from April to October also for lunch.

And the last thing to remember is reservation. Trust me it is good to make it because after 8 pm becomes always very crowded with characteristic queue of waiting people in front of the local.
Ok, that is it from me. . . and buon appetito! 🙂

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San Gimignano in the rain

DSCN3431If you have possibility to visit this small walled medieval hill town, don’t wonder too much! Just go! And it doesn’t matter if it’s sunny or rainy. This town has its unique beauty that it’s so good to discover. Weather is absolutely not important.

I had strong rain . . . but I don’t regret even for a moment! Was happy to be there and took some pictures for you. But it doesn’t change a fact that will go there one more time on sunny day.

At the beginning a bit of history . . . everything started in the 1st century, when two patrician brothers, Muzio and Silvio fled Rome and built two castles, Mucchio and Silvia (now San Gimignano). The name of Silvia was changed to San Gimignano. Then entered Bishop Geminianus with his intervention to spare the castle from destruction. As a result, a church was dedicated to the Saint and in the 6th and 7th centuries a walled village grew up around it. So like this in essence was formed this small and picturesque town.

As you will learn San Gimignano is known as the Town of Fine Towers and it’s famous for its medieval architecture, unique in the preservation of about a dozen of its tower houses, which, with its hilltop setting and encircling walls form “an unforgettable skyline”. You can’t miss Piazza della Cisterna (that is the main square of the town), Piazza Duomo, and of course famous towers.

Within the walls, you can find the buildings that are examples of both Romanesque and Gothic architecture. The Palazzo Comunale, the Collegiate Church and Church of Sant’ Agostino contain beautiful frescos.

What is more the “Historic Centre of San Gimignano”, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The town also is known for the white wine, Vernaccia di San Gimignano. You can taste it and buy it there. Also if you are lover of small Tuscany shops with typical products as well as souvenirs for sure you will be not disappointed.

At the end some practical information about how to get there. Everything you can find here http://www.sienamobilita.it/orari.html. Bus number 130 departs every 40 minutes. The travel time is about 70 minutes. And single ticket costs 6 EUR.

So what are you waiting for?! 🙂 Don’t forget to add San Gimignano to your travel list.
In spite of all I wish you a sunny day there. But as I mentioned even rain doesn’t have an impact. This you can see below.

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Cacio & Pere

20140131_131719Since Wednesday afternoon only rain in Toscana. . .without stop. So it is not the best time to do sightseeing or take some pictures. However you can if you want, the only thing . . . don’t forget to take big umbrella!
On the other hand we have just started weekend! Is not it nice ? 🙂
That is why I want to suggest you very casual restaurant today . . . Cacio & Pere. You will find it in the heart of our historic center.
For sure you will be satisfied with the inside of the restaurant. That is warm atmosphere, local live music, long selection of wines (from the most famous Tuscan red wines, Brunello di Montalcino, Chianti Classico and Morellino di Scansano, until the whites whose offer also includes labels from Friuli, Sicily and Trentino), cocktails, lunches as well as very polite staff.
What is more during the weekend’s evenings Cacio & Pere is full inside and outside. A lot of people stay outside drinking, talking with friends and smoking.
Just here are served cold or hot dishes of the traditional cuisine of Siena that with wines and beers taste great. You can try many delicacies of traditional Tuscan bruschetta, pappa al pomodoro, more or less ripened cheeses, salamis and hams produced by local companies. And what is more everything for all budgets.
Downstairs part of the local hosts live bands every night and exhibitions of paintings and photography of young talent.
As you can see this adorable place has everything that makes it special and worth to visit! Hmm what you need more . . . ? I guess only the address . . .Via dei termini 70. So wish you a nice evening and weekend !


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Il Panettone!

DSC02794Let’s increase the level of endorphins! A bit of sweetness is always good for us!

Today about il Panettone that is tradition for Christmas and New Year. Lucky we got it as a gift 1st of January 2014!

It is sweet bread loaf from Milan and is a symbol of this city. But it is popular not only in Italy but also, inter alia in Spain, Portugal, Brazil, Peru, Malta, Germany and Switzerland!

As I wrote the cake is derived from Milan, from the time of Ludovico il Moro, and it is still produced according to the 500 years ago. In Milan until 900 were among many bakers and confectioners to produce the cake, but today large industrial firms that are located  in Italy produce il Panettone. However in Milan are still many artisans who produce a cake according to the traditional recipe.

Il Panettone has characteristic shape (cupola shape) and packaging (1kg weight, in tall decorated boxes).

Unfortunately preparing process lasts long and involves the curing of the dough (made with water, flour, butter, eggs) which is acidic. The proofing process takes some days and gives the cake its characteristic fluffiness.

The best what you can find is of course inside: candied fruits(citron, orange); raisins ; lemon zest as well as chocolate. The result is commonly referred panetton CANDIO.

What is more here and there il Panettone can be served with crema di mascarpone.

20140105_155603Il Panettone you can find easily in supermarkets or smaller shops. You should only remember that cake is generally only available seasonally. Then only get your slice of this dainty and enjoy the great taste with a glass of sweet wine (for example Asti or Moscato d’Asti) or sweet hot beverages. Buon appetito !! 🙂
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La Bottega di Dedo

DSC02343If you want to drink or eat in elegant place . . . for sure here! You will be bewitched with the warm atmosphere and great music that you will find there.

It is ideal place for spending nice evening with a glass of good wine and with tasting local products served as an appetizer. However because it is a winery in Siena everything is focused on wines. What make this place unique is that you will not find here wines that you can find anywhere else. La Bottega di Dedo has a different philosophy, that is, to exploit the niche wine, organic wine and the wine produced in small wineries perhaps unknown to the general public.  But every wine has an outstanding quality.

As an alternative to wine is a selection of craft beers. In order to stimulate the consumption of good wine and good beer, you will not get here a cocktail.

This cozy wine bar in Siena (Via Simone Martini, 23) is open for both lunch and dinner. However reservations are welcome because they only have 40 seats and everything is freshly prepared.

What is more La Bottega Dedo is also a wine shop where you can buy wine in bulk and bottle to take home.

So now it depends on you if you decide to spend some priceless time in La Bottega Dedo!

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