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IMPORTANT INFORMATION » Our Monthly Newsletter ITA -

Palazzo Pitti

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Rent, Sell and Manage Properties in Florence and Tuscany
NEWSLETTER November 2014

November is packed with events, music and exhibits in Florence. We hope that you dive in with gusto (and Happy Thanksgiving) from SUZANNE, CORSO, BEI, LESLIE, ANNA PIA, VANNI, ANN and MARIO.


A NOVEMBER NOTE FROM SUZANNE – Hold the Date and Donate

Ciao everyone! We need your help. On December 8th each year the American International Women’s League organizes a Christmas bazaar, which is held at the ex-Scuderie Reali near Porta Romana. I am asking you all to think about what you would like to do to help make this a fabulously rich affair.

This Christmas Bazaar needs your clothing to sell, so please go through your closets (and those of your significant other, plus your kids, etc.) to collect the things you no longer need. We are looking for all types of clothing plus purses, gloves, scarves, evening gowns, cocktail dresses, jewelry (diamonds, or not) and hats. Another idea…. ask your local dry cleaner if they have anything that their clients have not collected over the past year, perhaps they would donate abandoned clothing. Naturally, please take a moment to be sure that all you are donating is clean and in good condition, then give me a buzz or contact AIWL at http://www.ailoflorence.org/?page_id=570 . Children are also on our list, so if you have children, grandchildren or know of any child living close by, please ask them for all of the toys that they have outgrown. Here again they must be complete and in good working order.

As always there is a lottery with of wonderful prizes and tickets are already flying out the door, so call Pitcher & Flaccomio at 0552343354 for tickets QUICKLY.

Don't forget to mark the date and place (Dec. 8 from 10am to 5pm, at the La Pagliere - Viale Machiavelli 18) on your calendar so you can come and replace everything you donated and have fun doing it! There will, of course, be food and drinks donated by the ELFINS of General Electric. I very much look forward to hearing from you, as we do NEED all the help we can get to make this event a great success.



(tel. 055 2343354, fax 055 5609916, info@pitcherflaccomio.com )


If you want to live in a Florentine neighborhood, out side of touristy center, but still close enough to walk to the museums and restaurants, this is the apartment for you. Located near Piazza Ferrucci in the Oltrarno, this light and airy apartment has two bedrooms and two bathrooms, great views and a balcony. It’s been renovated recently and the furnishings are a mix of modern and traditional. An easy walk from the rose garden and Piazalle Michelangelo, you leave the city for the green open space within minutes. Great for a garden lover with easy access to the Bardini Gardens and the Boboli.

For more information click this link.


A world of film comes to Florence each autumn, with hundreds of movies, shorts and documentaries from around the globe during the 50 Days of International Cinema festival. Most of the films are either in English or with English subtitles, so forget fresh air and exercise as the cold nights draw in—staying indoors and staring at the big screen has never been so rewarding. Sitting comfortably? Let the show begin!

Start with ethno music in film from November 3 to 5, and then stay for the Women and Film Festival from November 6 to 11. Documentaries on International Contemporary Art come next from November 12 to 16. A new offering this year presents films from the Balkans, entitled Balkans Florence Express, from November 17 to 20.

LGBT cinema takes center stage during the Florence Queer Festival (November 21-27), which presents both documentaries and movies from four diverse countries.

The Festival continues into December with documentaries in the Festival dei Popoli (November 28 to December 5).

The 50 Days of Cinema films are all screened at the Odeon Cinema Theater in Piazza Strozzi.

Info: www.50giornidicinema.com.

PICK EATERY FOR NOVEMBER – L'Osteria di Giovanni

For over half a century in Florence, the name Latini has been associated with classic Tuscan food and wine. Giovanni Latini and his family, however, have created something completely different from the old family trattoria. Modern art on the walls, widely spaced tables dressed in fine linen, a sophisticated wine list, and Tuscan cuisine with an up-dated concept make this a restaurant to savor and enjoy.

Giovanni is a welcoming host, who serves as many native Florentines as he does visitors from abroad. A plate of tiny mouth-watering warm fried bread coccoli (cuddles) and cold flutes of Prosecco are placed on the table immediately for munching and sipping while perusing the menu where every dish has a helpful description in English or Italian.

Caterina, Giovanni's daughter, attended L'Ecole des Arts Culinaires and the French Culinary Institute of New York. Caterina insists on the freshest ingredients as well as adding a refined modern interpretation to traditional recipes. Popular dishes include salmon cured with pink peppercorns, served with sour cream and melon, tortelli stuffed with pear and pecorino with leek and paprika sauce, pici with sausage and kale, and lamb slow-cooked with artichokes.

Although there are a couple of traditional desserts on the ever-changing seasonal menu, Giovanni's wife Carol has delighted everyone by introducing a warm citrus cake and a light pineapple carpaccio with red peppercorns. Dinner will average 40 to 50 euro per person, depending on the choice of wine.

L'Osteria di Giovanni, Via del Moro, 22, Tel. +39 055 284897, www.osteriadigiovanni.com

Open for lunch on the weekend and seven evenings a week for dinner.

Reservations recommended.

Note: Osteria di Giovanni will have a fabulous Thanksgiving dinner with all of the trimmings. Check with them for 2013 at https://www.facebook.com/losteriadigiovanni .

Thanksgiving Note: Check also with St. James American Church for special services and dinner. Also, Il Palagio restaurant at The Four Seasons Hotel should be serving a holiday menu.

BEST BOOK FOR NOVEMBER – The Pursuit of Italy: A History of a Land, Its Regions, and Their Peoples by David Gilmour

A provocative, entertaining account of Italy’s diverse riches, its hopes and dreams, its past and present

Did Garibaldi do Italy a disservice when he helped its disparate parts achieve unity? Was the goal of political unification a mistake? The question is asked and answered in a number of ways in The Pursuit of Italy, an engaging, original consideration of the many histories that contribute to the brilliance—and weakness—of Italy today.

David Gilmour’s wonderfully readable exploration of Italian life over the centuries is filled with provocative anecdotes as well as personal observations, and is peopled by the great figures of the Italian past—from Cicero and Virgil to the controversial politicians of the twentieth century. His wise account of the Risorgimento debunks the nationalistic myths that surround it, though he paints a sympathetic portrait of Giuseppe Verdi, a beloved hero of the era.

Gilmour shows that the glory of Italy has always lain in its regions, with their distinctive art, civic cultures, identities, and cuisines. Italy’s inhabitants identified themselves not as Italians but as Tuscans and Venetians, Sicilians and Lombards, Neapolitans and Genoese. Italy’s strength and culture still come from its regions rather than from its misconceived, mishandled notion of a unified nation.

BEST BOOKS FOR YOUNG READERS FOR NOVEMBER – Who Was Leonardo da Vinci? by Roberta Edwards (Author), True Kelley (Illustrator)

Leonardo da Vinci was a gifted painter, talented musician, and dedicated scientist and inventor, designing flying machines, submarines, and even helicopters. Yet he had a hard time finishing things, a problem anyone can relate to. Only thirteen paintings are known to be his; as for the illustrated encyclopedia he intended to create, all that he left were thousands of disorganized notebook pages. Here is an accessible portrait of a fascinating man who lived at a fascinating time—Italy during the Renaissance.

MUST-SEE EXHIBIT FOR NOVEMBERPalazzo Strozzi Celebrates Picasso

As of 20 September, Palazzo Strozzi in Florence will be focusing on modern art once again with a major new event devoted to one of the greatest masters of 20th century painting, Pablo Picasso.

The exhibition will present a broad selection of works by this great master of modern art in an effort to stimulate a reflection on his influence and interaction with such leading Spanish artists as Joan Miró, Salvador Dalí, Juan Gris, Maria Blanchard and Julio González: art reflecting on art and on the relationship between the real and the surreal, the artist's heartfelt involvement in the tragedy of unfolding history, the emergence of the monster with a human face, and the metaphor of erotic desire as a primary source of inspiration for the artist's creativity and world vision.

Picasso and Spanish Modernity will be showing some ninety works by Picasso and other artists, ranging from painting to sculpture, drawing, engraving and even film, thanks to the Fondazione Palazzo Strozzi's synergistic cooperation with the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía in Madrid. The works of art on display will include such celebrated masterpieces as Woman's Head (1910), Portrait of Dora Maar (1939) and The Painter and the Model (1963) by Picasso, Siurana, the Path (1917) and Figure and Bird in the Night (1945) by Miró and Dalí's Arlequin (1927), along with Picasso's drawings, engravings and preparatory paintings for his huge masterpiece Guernica (1937), none of which have been displayed outside Spain in such vast numbers before now.


Tel. + 39 055 2645155

Opening times: Daily 9.00-20.00, Thursdays 9.00-23.00

Tickets sold until one hour before closing time.

Tickets: Full price € 10.00, Concessions € 8.50, 8.00, 7.50, Schools € 4.00

BEST FESTIVAL OF FOOD IN FLORENCE – Biennale Enogastronomica Fiorentina

Under the watchful eye of the Confesercenti Firenze, and the direction of journalist Leonardo Romanelli, Florence is all about food in November. With a gelato festival and typical Tuscan food offered at local restaurants, the piazzas and streets of Florence will be filled with extra tables and the sound of wine glasses chiming with toasts.

The biannual food festival returns to Florence with even more restaurants offering typical menus for twenty evenings, from November 10 to 30.Find the list of the participating restuarants on the festival web site: http://www.biennaleenogastronomica.it/ristoranti/.

The Festival website is being updated so check back frequently before the start of the Festival on the 10th:

http://www.biennaleenogastronomica.it/ .



CONTAMINATIO – Contemporary Art in Florence

Until November 15, one of the great names in contemporary art, Ugo Riva, shows his work in the exhibition Contaminatio [Influence]. The focal pieces of the exhibit are 20 paintings from 2011, a series titled Sindrome di Jacopo e Vincent, inspired by the figures of Jacopo Pontormo and Vincent Van Gogh. The main theme of the exhibition is influence, and Riva’s work combines aspects of the two artists’ work, his sources of inspiration.

The setting, Studio Marcello Tommasi, is very special indeed: it’s where Cellini crafted his Perseus.

See www.facebook.com/etraevents.studiotommasi for more information.

Studio Marcello Tommasi, via della Pergola, 57


At Gilda Bistrot in Piazza Lorenzo Gilberti, 9, there will be an exhibit of Noel Ganzzano’s art “Un Anno da Sirene” presented in conjuction with the Women in Film Festival at the Odeon Cinema and with the sponsorship of the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Hman Rights Europe. The exhibit, open from November 1 to 16, emphsizes the fight against domestic abuse.


November 29-30 (11am to 1pm on Sat. and 11am to 8pm on Sun). Of course you are going to go for the wine, but also go for the experience. This year the Florence Wine Event is in the glass house (Tepidarium del Roster) at the Horitcultural Garden (Giardino dell'Orticultura, Via Vittorio Emanuele II, 17). Timed to be part of the Biennale Enogastronomica Fiorentina, the Florence Wine Event is offering its ninth annual celebration of Tuscan wine.

See the website for details: http://www.florencewinevent.com


If you aren’t exhausted from the 2014 CORRI LA VITA, try the 31st Florence Marathon On Sunday, 30 November.

Step by step all along its 42 kilometers and 195 meters you are surrounded by centuries of art, history and culture, a unique emotion that can only be experienced by those who run in Florence. Year after year, thousands of sportspeople and enthusiasts from all over the world come to participate in this classic race on the last Sunday in November. This great event in Florence has increased immeasurably recently so much so that they expect more than 10.500 participants in 2012. Official web site: http://www.firenzemarathon.it/index.php?lang=en

This extraordinary increase in participation also testifies to the constant attention given to the organization of the race. Florence Marathon is now the second Italian marathon (after Rome), and among the 20 most important marathons in the world. The route takes you by all those landmarks of singular beauty that have made Florence famous worldwide: views over the enchanting hills and countryside, and passing right by the Cathedral Square, Piazza della Signoria, Ponte Vecchio (to mention only just a few of historical importance), before entering the majestic Piazza Santa Croce. The road is entirely asphalted and ramp-free, except for the short, slightly sloping stretch of road at the start, and these characteristics make it a particularly fast route appreciated by runners.

FLORENCE QUEER FESTIVAL 2014 – Art, Literature and Music

The Queer Festival starts November 6, including Queer Art and Queer Lit (See above for Queer Film).

Queer Art 16-30 November

The big news this year is the exhibition of Only a Dog can Judge Me created by Dutch performer and drag queen Antoine Timmermans (aka Cybersissy). Find the show at IED – Via Bufalini, 6r. Another art exhibition called Jane Austin and Florence will be at IREOS – Via dei Serragli, 3.

Queer Book 15-30 November

For book presentations and author interviews go to the IREOS and IBS bookstores. Most of these presentations will be in Italian. See the website for details: www.florencequeerfestival.it

Queer Theater 15, 16 & 18 November

Head to the Rifredi Teatro, Via Vittorio Emanuele II, 303, for theater offerings including Operetta Burlesca and Io Mai Niente Con Nessuno Avevo Fatto, a dramatic play.


Infoline: 347 8553836 Ireos: 055 216907; Tel. 055 240397

info@florencequeerfestival.it – www.florencequeerfestival.it

IED – Istituto Europeo di Design- Via M. Bufalini 6/r – t. 055 29821 – 055 2645685

Ireos – Via de’ Serragli, 3 – t. 055 216907

IBS Bookshop – Via De’ Cerretani, 16 r – t. 055287339

Exhibition hours The Pink Choice Maika Elan at IED Florence: Monday to Thursday from 9 to 21.30, Friday 9-18, Saturday 10-18


November 7-9, the ancient Fortezza da Basso of Florence will host more than 300 world-renowned tattoo artists, shows and eclectic musicians who will enchant an audience of curious and urban fashions lovers in a weird and wonderful way.

Florence looks forward to the seventh edition of the Florence Tattoo Convention. In the wake of the resounding success of previous editions, the association Firenze Indelebile will present the best of the international scene in the world of tattoo and body piercing.

The event will take place in the large lower floor of the pavilion Spadolini and will be presented as usual by Leela Huma who is going to delight audiences with original performances and introduce the artists representing the U.S.A, Japan, Brazil, Venezuela, Argentina, Chile, China, Canada, Tahiti, Mexico and most of the European states.

Many will be true masters of tattoo who will perform real works of art on the skin of loyal customers using traditional instruments. Again this year, tattoo artists and the public will be able to participate in the seminars.

Every night DJ sets, concerts and typical Tuscan cuisine will be the backdrop to the event that every year opens its doors to more than 10,000 spectators.


From the 14th to the 16th of November, the Limonaia at Villa Strozzi will be al things Japanese. Art and artisans, music and food, and events for children make this an event for the whole family. See the details on the website: http://www.festivalgiapponese.it/xvi-festival-giapponese-2014/.

Villa Strozzi is Via Pisana at #77.


The Fulgor is starting to make one of their theaters available for Original Sound movies , seven days a week, three show times a day. Call to find out what is showing in English. Via Maso Finiguerra – Tel. 055 238 1881


Check the web site http://www.cinehall.it/ for updated information or stop by the theater for a brochure. The Fifty Days of Film festival starts at the end of October. Located in Piazza Strozzi.


The usual Odeon Cinema Original Sound film selection moves to the Asta 2 Cinema in Piazza Beccaria for the month of November.

ORIGINAL LANGUAGE FILMS – Talking Movies at the British Institute

The Talking Movies Series at the British Institute Library: Every Wednesday at 8:00 pm, the Sala Ferragamo in the Institute's Harold Acton Library hosts a film, followed by discussion. The British Institute Library, Lungarno Guicciardini 9.

Check the web site at www.britishinstitute.it/en/events/default.asp for times, dates, and detailed information or stop by the library for a brochure.

All about Eve?—A season of films by women directors

Is a film made by a woman different from a film made by a man? Why are there relatively so few women directors? Is there such a thing as a ‘woman's film'? Do men make better ‘women' films' than women? Do women make better ‘men's films' than men? Are films directed by women a class, a genre, a type in themselves? Do any of these questions matter? It is in asking questions like these, rather than answering them that inspiration for this series lies. Necessarily eclectic and seldom objective, with many significant and probably unforgivable omissions, the selection unfolds chronologically, offering a range of sensibilities, eccentricities, novelties, gender and queer issues, from the challenging to the banal, from light entertainment to political commitment, from the arcane to the depressingly familiar, from the comic to the disturbing. A cinematic kaleidoscope just like any other? (Non-English language films are subtitled.)

Wednesday, November 05, 2014. 20.00

Film: JEANNE DIELMAN, 23 QUAI DU COMMERCE, 1080, BRUXELLES by Chantal Akerman, 1975

Wednesday, November 12, 2014. 20.00

Film: THE APPLE by Samira Makmalbaf, 1998

Wednesday, November 26, 2014. 20.00

Film: ITALIAN FOR BEGINNERS by Lone Sherfig, 2000


Every Wednesday at 18.00 from September to June there is a lecture, concert or other event in the Sala Ferragamo in the Harold Acton Library followed by an informal drinks reception.

Wednesday, November 05, 2014, 18.00

Lecture: Corinna Salvadori Lonergan

Professor Corrina Salvatori Lonergan of Trinity College Dublin explains in detail her technique for translating the beautiful ‘Fable of Orpheus' by Politian (1454-1494).

Wednesday, November 12, 2014, 18.00

Lecture in Italian: Paolo Giulierini and Paolo Bruschetti

Paolo Giulierini, conservator at the Museum of the Etruscan Academy in Cortona, and Paolo Bruschetti, the Academy's secretary, speak in Italian about the beguiling exhibition ‘Seduzione Etrusca'.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014, 18.00

Lecture in Italian: Philippe Daverio

In the 450th anniversary year of the death of Michelangelo Buonarroti, the critic, journalist and TV presenter Philippe Daverio speaks (in Italian) about the universal renaissance genius.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014, 18.00

Lecture: Joseph Weiler

Professor J.H.H. Weiler, President of the European University Institute and an avid beekeeper, explains several astonishing features of the life of the hive, with some useful lessons for human society.


Two websites offer all the news of Italy that is fit to digitalize online everyday. If you want to keep up with the national new go to Italy 24 presented by newspaper 24 Ore at http://www.italy24.ilsole24ore.com or news service ANSA at http://www.ansa.it/english/index.html .


At P&F, we believe only the Florentine businesses that offer good service with a welcoming attitude deserve our patronage. We are starting with this issue of the newsletter to let our readers know about small businesses in Florence where they will welcome you in and provide the service you want.

(We encourage our readers to write to us with suggestions of shops and service providers they support. Please send an email to info@pitcherflaccomio.com or newsletter@pitcherflaccomio.com .)


It’s hard to find a good manicure in Florence. Nail & Beauty is a find for all of you nail needs. If you need help with reconstructing nails, either in shellac or gel or want a sun lamp service to improve your tan, or facials of all sorts or to get a relaxing massage, talk to Francesca who speaks English and is very professional. Definitely make an appointment as the place is small.

Via dell'Angolo, 109R

0550944899 or 338 7640409



For the most wonderful bouquets and flower arrangements and a great assortment of exotic plants and flowers for gifts or for yourself go to La Rosa Nera. Prices reasonable and they offer a delivery service.

Piazza Gaetano Salvemini, 16 tel: 0552638072



The Musica dei Popoli concert series has been running with great acclaim since September and it wraps up on November 11. See American trombonist Fred Wesley on 7 November and French folk singer Fatoumata Diawara on the 11th. Both concerts are at Auditorium FLOG. See the web site at: http://www.musicadeipopoli.com/it/home/

Centro Flog Tradizioni Popolari, Via M. Mercati, 24/B

MUSICUS CONCENTUS – Tradizione in Movimento

NOVEMBER 14, 2014 AT 21:15


Sala Vanni, Piazza del Carmine, 14

"A double concerto for the third night of the festival SuperJazz: Violinist Emanuele Parrini and Hobby Horse."

NOVEMBER 21, 2014 AT 21:15


Sala Vanni, Piazza del Carmine, 14

"The last concert of the festival is SuperJazz with the duo of English pianist Alexander Hawkins and South African drummer Louis Moholo-Moholo."

NOVEMBER 28, 2014 AT 21:15


Sala Vanni, Piazza del Carmine, 14

"Making its debut at the Florence Irish singer and cellist Naomi Berrill presents her first album From The Ground."

See website for details: http://www.musicusconcentus.com/


The Amici della Musica of Florence presents various concerts at the Teatro della Pergola. See the schedule for concerts at http://www.amicimusica.fi.it/.

Amici della Musica - Concert Season Highlights for November 2, 8, 9, 15, 16, 22, and 23 – Shumann, Britten, Dvorak, Brahms, and Schubert.

Teatro della Pergola, Via della Pergola, info: 055/609012 – 055 607440 - 055 2264333, and www.amicimusica.fi.it


The Maggio Musicale Festival is back with a autumn series! The 78th season of Florence's historic opera company has been one of the best yet.

Find the calendar here: http://www.maggiofiorentino.it/calendar

Ticket Office Teatro Comunale

Corso Italia 16 - Firenze - fax: +39 055 287222

Tues. - Fri. 10:00-16:30 & Sat. 10:00-13:00

Tickets on line





Not to worry! … here are a bunch of events or exhibits that will still be happening in late November and December:


There is a new exhibition that just opened at the Salvatore Ferragamo Museum. The exhibition Equilibrium can be seen at the Museo Ferragamo, from June 2014 to April 2015.

The museum, opened in 1995, was created by the Ferragamo family after the international success of an exhibition on the great shoe designer Salvatore Ferragamo’s work, originally held at the Strozzi Palace in Florence. The exhibition soon became a travelling event and was featured in venues such as the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, the County Museum in Los Angeles, the Guggenheim Museum in New York, the Sogestu Kai Foundation in Tokyo and the Museo des Bellas Artes in Mexico City.

As a demonstration of the cultural value of the institution, in 1999 the Museo Salvatore Ferragamo received the Guggenheim Impresa & Cultura Award, yearly recognized to companies particularly fostering cultural activities and art.

The museum, located in the heart of Florence, is housed in the Spini Feroni palace, which is also home of the Ferragamo company since 1938.

The exhibition Equilibrium, curated by Stefania Ricci, Sergio Risaliti and Emanuele Ennia, the exhibition portrays the attention, almost a devotion, that Salvatore Ferragamo always reserved to the anatomy of foot, central element of his creations. Balancing on feet is a capability that can be transformed in art, representing it with sculpture of painting, but also by dancing or climbing mountains. Creations and original drawings by Ferragamo are thus placed in direct relationship with sculptures, paintings, installations and videos, creating a multi-face exhibition where the beauty and significance of equilibrium are depicted through a diverse and fascinating set of expressive means.

Open 10am to 7:30pm every day.

Salvatore Ferragamo Museum – Piazza Santa Trinità 5


Go in the evening to beat the crowds!

Every Friday from July 4 the Uffizi Gallery, the Accademia Gallery, the Museum of Medici Chapels can be visited between 19.00 and 22.00 on top of the regularly scheduled hours.

Every Friday from August 8 also the Bargello National Museum can be visited between 19.00 and 22.00. BUT the Bargello on September 12 & 19 will close to the public at 17:00.


The Italian state museums, including the Uffizi, Accademia and Bargello are free the first Sunday day of every month. Italian Minister of Culture Dario Franceschini announced revolutionary changes for State museums across all of Italy.

The major change is that free tickets will only be available for those under 18 years old (and a few other groups, such as teachers) and reduced tickets for those under 25 years old. Everyone else will be paying a full entry ticket. This means that all over 65 years old will now be paying entrance fees.

The second major change is that every first Sunday of the month state museums will be free for everyone as part of the initiative “Sunday at the Museum“.

Another change announced as part of the Ministerial decree signed and announced yesterday is that there will be two annual “Nights at the Museum” every calendar year, where entrance only costs a euro (as it did in this last edition in May) and opening times extend late into the night while all major museums, including the Uffizi Gallery, will have extended opening times until 10pm every single Friday evening.



On November 1, 2, 8 and 9, Scarperia is the place to be. This medieval village in the Mugello area north of Florence will host two weekends of festivities honoring one of their local specialties, the Tuscan white truffle. Buy truffles to experiment with at home. Taste Tagliolini with truffles, Bistecca with truffles and Tortelli Mugellani (pasta stuffed with potato filling). The fun goes until midnight, Saturday from 5:00 pm and Sunday from 11:00 am. Tel. 055 8468142/20, 338 255643.

Go outside of town for the Motor Fest – Car Edition on November 8-9 at the famed Scarperia race track.

See www.mugellocircuit.it for information.


Sat. 15 and Sun. 16, starting at 10:00am, in Borgo San Lorenzo, you have another chance to taste and buy the local white truffles found in the Mugello area. The town’s historical center hosts stands and local restaurants will present special truffle menus. At Villa Pecori Giraldi there will be truffle hunt demonstrations, wine and vinsanto tastings and dinners. Info: 055 8456230. Info: tel. 055 8457053 - assotartufi@tiscali.it - www.tartufaimugello.it


Every season offer a new view of art and nature at the Chianti Sculpture Park.

For groups of at least 12 people the entrance fee includes the guided tour in Italian, English, German or French. For individual visitors or small groups a multimedia guide can be rented at 3 Euro. Alternatively, the visitors can download the application ChiantiPark directly on their mobile phone or tablet from Apple Store and Google Play Store.

There is one more reason that makes a trip to Pievasciata even more interesting for tourists: the project Pievasciata, hamlet of contemporary art. It shows the installation of a dozen art works in areas surrounding the Park. Eight sculptures have already been installed.

For photos and descriptions click here: www.chiantisculpturepark.it/pievasciatabac.htm

Check the web site for all the details: www.chiantisculpturepark.it


On Sun 16, enjoy the crisp Tuscan autumn and tour selected wineries open for tastings of their Vino Novello (the Tuscan version of Beaujolais) in celebration of Saint Martin. Young Novello wine, soft and fruity, may tease the palate, but also taste great older wines during this event sponsored by the Wine Tourism Movement.

Even if you are the designated driver, the special celebrations are a good excuse to spend the day outdoors in an intimate and cheerful atmosphere. The wineries welcome visitors by also offering art exhibitions, wine tasting in conjunction with local produce cooked according to traditional recipes, "lunch with the winemaker" and walks among the vineyards. Check individual wineries below for their ideas.

For more info: http://www.movimentoturismovino.it/it/eventi/5/cantine-aperte-a-san-martino/

For other open cantinas on the 16th, see:

Corte di Valle, Via Vicchiomaggio 26, 50022 - GREVE IN CHIANTI Tel: 055 853939

Castello di Volpaia, Loc. Volpaia, 53017 - RADDA IN CHIANTI Tel: 0577 738619

Fattoria di Bacchereto - Terre a Mano, Via Fontemorana 179, CARMIGNANO Tel: 0573 750191

Fornacelle, www.fornacelle.it. Loc. Fornacelle 232/a, CASTAGNETO CARDUCCI - (Li), Tel: 0565 77555


Paul Jenkins has made a name for himself as one of the major figures in twentieth century art. In Jenkins’s work, colour takes centre stage, taking on a power which initially seemed non-existent. The 70 works on canvas and paper, which complete this exhibition, are the fruits of very precise and accurate work from the artist and portray his intense style of painting. His works will be exhibited in two locations in Prato, the Galleria Open Art and the Museum of painting and murals.

Until November 30.

Galleria Open Art, Viale Repubblica 24 and Museo di Pittura e Murale, Piazza S.Domenico, Prato




TuscanTraveler’s Italian Food Rules written by Ann Reavis has been published! Find a copy at The Paperback Exchange at Via delle Oche, 4r, or at BM Bookshop, Borgo Ognissante, 4.

ITALIAN LIFE RULE: To Ciao or Not to Ciao

Who would have thought using an ubiquitous Italian word in Italy could get you into so much trouble. The word is “ciao” and if you use it at the wrong time with the wrong person you will have left a lasting negative impression.

Ciao is described as the Italian version of “aloha,” meaning both “hello” and “goodbye,” so how can that be bad? As with many things in Italy, it all comes down to history.

Ciao comes from Venetian dialect, where the phrase s-ciào vostro meant “I am your slave.” Often, s-ciào vostro was shortened to simply s-ciào and then to ciào. In Latin, the word is sclavus and in standard Italian schiavo, which is where the Venetian s-ciào is derived.

In the seventeenth century, the term was used by servants when encountering their employer: “I am your slave.” This transformed into “I am your servant” used by a person of inferior social status to one of greater importance and finally, to “I’m at your service” when addressing a stranger of one’s own age or older. It was never used as a casual greeting before the 20th century.

In modern Italy, ciao is mainly used in informal settings, i.e. among family members, relatives, friends, in other words, with those one would address with the familiar tu (second person singular) as opposed to Lei (courtesy form). With family and friends, ciao is the norm even as a morning or evening salutation, in lieu of buongiorno or buonasera. When used in other contexts, ciao may be interpreted as slightly flirtatious, or a request for friendship or closeness. Or it may seem to the recipient as an ill-bred form of address.

Some say that Ernest Hemingway introduced the word ciao to the American lexicon in 1929 in his book Farewell To Arms with its Italian setting. Others say it traveled outside of Italy with waves of immigrants after WWI and WWII. Now, it is used throughout the globe as a salutation a greeting, both in writing and speech.

In Italy, however, it is still a very informal greeting. To use it with a stranger or an elder is an easy and unknowing way to offend. It is much better to get into practice before you arrive with the proper mode of greeting an Italian and then the salutation to be used when parting company. This is also important when saying goodbye when you are talking on the telephone with a stranger.

When you are introduced or encounter a stranger, use the words buongiorno (good day) or buonasera (good evening), depending on the time of day (buongiorno before 1pm and buonasera after 1pm). These will become you favorite words because they will never offend and they can be used as both greetings or parting words. If you want to up your game a bit then piacere (my pleasure) is a good formal greeting (but never used for parting ways).

When parting company, the safest word to use is arrivederci. Like salve it can be used with strangers. The formal version is arrivederLa, which is wise to use with older strangers, priests, nuns, and people in authority. You may wish to start out with arrivederLa and waiting until the person you’re talking with tells you that it is too formal. (Permission to move to a more informal form of address always flows downhill from the person in the more elevated social position or older than you.) Arrivederci and arrivederLa only mean goodbye – not hello – so you can’t use them to start a conversation, only to end one.

Does this mean you can never say “ciao?” No, you will hear ciao being said all over Italy. But if you pay close attention, you’ll see that it’s almost always used between people who know one another or are in the same peer group. Among strangers, or when addressing an elder or someone in a more senior position, most Italians typically choose salve or some other more formal greeting.


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In November, Florence is packed full of cultural events.

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Pitcher and Flaccomio