6.21.2014

Tuscany Vespa Tour

Day three in Italy was the whole reason we decided to go to Florence. For a Tuscany Vespa Tour! Well we liked the idea of the Tuscany Vespa tour and that is why we went to Florence. We liked Florence too. I found the tour by googling "Tuscany Vespa Wine Tour" and then liked the reviews I saw on TripAdvisor for Tuscany Vespa Tours. For our tour there were four drivers and one passenger. I booked online and crossed my fingers...

We walked over and arrived at 9:30 to sign in and pay. Chris and Fillipo greeted us and explained how everything was going to work. We waited for the rest of our group to show up (there was a Vespa group and a bike group) and then were on our way.

Our group took two vans into the Tuscan Hills and started our day with a tour of a castle and some wine and olive oil tasting. Chris (the Scottish Italian) led the tour and Fillipo set up all the wine and olive oil for tasting.




After the wine tasting we were off on a Vespa! I know. Drink wine then drive.... but it was not very much wine and there was lots of bread and olive oil. We were fitted with helmets and then drove to a car park to practice driving the scooters. If you didn't feel comfortable, you could ride with the guide (only one person) or not get to go.... I was a little nervous but Fillipo (our guide) explained everything really well and soon we were scooting along the car park.

(photo by one of the sisters)


The scooters we had were not Vespas, except for Jay. Apparently Vespas are a little hard to drive. It seems that all Italians call any scooter a Vespa, but the rest of us drove a scooter that was easier to drive. Totally fine with me.
(photo by Fillipo)

Fillipo was really good at explaining the road conditions and keeping us all safe and confident through our day. He would stop at vista points and we would take some pictures and then when we all got back on our bikes he would explain the next section of road until we would stop again for the next beautiful view to take more photos.
(photo by Fillipo)

(Photo by A)



(Photo by A)



(Photo by Fillipo.  Jay was up to no good in this photo)

We met up with the bike tour for lunch and we were the less sweaty of the bunch. We then continued zipping around Tuscany on the scooters. Our group was fun and Fillipo was great.
(Photo by Jay)

I asked Fillipo to drop us off at Piazza Michelangelo on the way back and we had aperativo overlooking the city.



(Photo by Jay)

And after a fate influenced mix up with our dinner reservations, we had our best meal in Florence at La Buchetta. It was fabulous and Angelo our waiter was charming as was everyone. We felt very welcome there and really enjoyed the meal.
(Photo by Jay)


This is Pici La Buchetta. So AMAZING! A hint of heat at the end. The ingredients were typical of a caprese salad, kind of, but the flavor was nothing like it. I am not a fan of tomatoes, but I am the one who ordered this and it was my favorite of our pastas, but barely. We also had a spinach- ricotta ravioli with eggplant and capers in a caponata style sauce. It was served in a foil packet because the sauce was like a stew. It was almost like it had been baked. Also very good. No photo of that one. Sorry.

This is the carbonata after we had attacked it. Angelo explained that what we thought of as carbonara was not really carbonara and this was true carbonara. It was so good. I think we are going to see if we can find the recipes for these pasta dishes.

Next we had the signature dish of Florence the Bistecca alle Fiorentina. It was huge, cooked perfectly and suggested that we eat it with a little salt and pepper, olive oil, and lemon. Three of us split it and we still took home about half the steak. We finished this excellent meal with some digestif and then walking home came to one of Vespa Tour Fillipo's favorite gelato places, Gellateria dei Neri (on Neri street) and seemed to find a little room for gelato. It was an unforgettable day.

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