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“Communal dinners make this place”
Review of Fattoria Mose

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Fattoria Mose
Certificate of Excellence
UK
Level 4 Contributor
49 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
“Communal dinners make this place”
Reviewed 28 June 2014 via mobile

I so much want to say wonderful things about Chiara and this Agrioturism. What has left very positive memories are the communal dinners around the table. The food was lovely (thanks for the gluten free on the second night) and the conversation across nationalities was delightful. However we stayed in Simonetta's flat that is circa 1970, we slept in 2 single beds in 2 separate rooms. I'd call it an 'itchy scratch'y type of place, not well maintained. It has a stunning swimming pool and terrace but it's very uncomfortable to sit there. A shame as Chiara is a relaxed and charming hostess and this should have been one of our best stays.

Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
2 Thank KatePSUk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (17)
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English first
Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
18 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 April 2014

We stayed 3 nights in Fattoria Mose in April. The first impression was of a glorious profusion of wild flowers, olive trees, orange and lemon trees as well as almonds and pistachios ! We enjoyed walking through the farm grounds - we also found peas and artichokes, as well as masses of rosemary, sage and borage. The main house is an imposing crumbling mansion with a huge amount of character and history. Unfortunately we were accommodated in a different building which although clean and functional, lacked the character we were hoping for. The beds were fine and the kitchen clean and adequately kitted out.
We ate one meal in the Fattoria, cooked and hosted by the indomitable Chiara ! The food was great - home cooking with flair and love. We enjoyed eating at one big table and the conversation with the other guests. Chiara obviously gets to meet and talk to a huge and diverse range of people and her general knowledge is formidable - I'm sure she knew more about the Scottish Independence debate than I did ! We would have loved to eat at her table again, but the next night was fully booked.
The only negatives were that the pool was not open - despite it being 20 degrees or more - we think thats hot in Scotland, but the Italians still have their winter jackets on ! Also it would have been good if there was some activities for children - table tennis or a trampoline, perhaps ?
In response to the review 'Cat fancy ' well - honestly we only saw 2 cats, one so shy she just ran away, the other so friendly that it made Mose the favourite place we stayed for our 9 year old. Also, even tho our door was open when the cat came to visit, it never came in, just waited patiently for our son to come out and give him cuddles !
We had one breakfast in a lovely room upstairs in the main house - fab crusty bread, salami, cheese, fruit, cereal and a selection of home-made jams - when does Chiara find the time ? The room opened on to a delightful terrace with wisteria climbing over it - when I admired it, Chiara kindly gave me some of the seed pods to try to grow back home !
All-in-all we were glad to have visited this special place but wouldn't necessarily recommend it for families outside of high season as it is very quiet with no activities for children.
The location was perfect for visiting the Valley of the Temples.

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
1 Thank Karen L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Boston, Massachusetts
Level 5 Contributor
93 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 74 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 April 2014

We stayed at Fattoria Mose for three days in early April. The days were sunny and the nights were still quite cool. The fields were filled with wild flowers, a profusion of wild flowers, like an alpine meadow in spring, only bigger. We would have stayed longer but the whole place was booked by a delegation of visiting (amateur) painters who came to paint the views.

We picked Fatoria Mose because several of the apartments had kitchens. The kitchen was fine. The apartment was sparsely furnished but comfortable. Everything was spotless. Which is unusual for a farm, particularly during a rainy week. Outside, beside one entrance was our own table and chairs with a spectacular views. The other entrance had a kind of public porch with several tables and chairs with the same great views. (I never did cook here, because the Mose meals and the local restaurants were quite good and more convenient.)

Fattoria Mose is a working farm and we spent several hours each day walking the paths, through the fields and orchards, among the ancient olive trees. We visited the animals, talked to the dogs and cats. We waved to the shepherd and his flock of sheep as they went to pasture. The views are spectacular, painterly, memorable. And, elegaic. If you visit, do try to remember this place and countryside, because Sicily is being rapidly transformed by industrial agriculture and uncontrolled private building. These beautiful fields belong to the past, and are unlikely to last.

We had dinner twice with Signora Chiara. She was warm and welcoming. She cooked simple, home style Sicilian dishes. On the first night we had several kinds of calzone for a starter with the world's best cherry tomatoes, a large spiral of sausages browned and cooked in red wine, a whole head of purple cauliflower, cooked in red wine and drizzled in olive oil. For dessert a fresh "basket" of ricotta with farm honey. Red wine, white wine. Farm almonds and pistachios. On another night there was pasta with peas and artichokes, a little mint, grated pecorino. Delicate and appetizing. Alongside was a kind of pesto made of coarsely chopped green olives, dried tomatoes, almonds, capers. Chiara's invention, I think. It went remarkably well as a garnish for the pasta. Then, a ricotta cheese pie with cubes of salami, marvelously savory. And, a frittata with herbs topped with chopped tomatoes and olive oil. Followed by a fruit salad.

This is not restaurant cuisine. There are two restaurants nearby, one in Agrigento and another in San Leon which have very good fish. They have approximately the same menus, and the prices will be about the same as Fattoria Mose. If you are not a cook, and aiming to maximize your dining experiences, they are better than Fattoria Mose. Even better, there are two of the best restaurants in Sicily in Ragusa (but you are unlikely to survive the drive at night back to Agrigento). I recommend dining at Fattoria Mose for the convenience and the conviviality. You will also get a greater variety of local ingredients and Mose's olive oil is superb. If you are a cook you can get a better idea of how to cook Sicilian at home. And the conversation. You may have a memorable conversation. Senora Chiara speaks excellent English and is very cosmopolitan. On the first night there were just three of us. We sat around the table and talked about farming, literature, the transition of the countryside, gastronomy, the history of the farm. It was like having an informal dinner with a friend. The conversation was in several ways more important than the food. On the second night there were other guests, a painter and her husband a music archivist, two English epidemiologists. We talked a lot about cooking, and art, and diet and medicine. The dining room was warm, quiet and comfortable. This is one of the joys of travel.

Breakfast was held in an enormous room on the second floor of the main building. Great leaping high windows and a table that seats 30 to 40 people. There was fruit from the farm, their homemade marmalades, four different kinds of cheese, and salamis, cereals, fresh squeezed juice. Breads. I don't know if I can eat 10 euros of food for breakfast, but the room and the furnishings made it an occasion to remember.

Fattoria Mose is a working farm, and it has its own pace. Tractors, barking dogs, animals. A wild profusion of growing things. It is not a luxury resort. You are not going to be comfortable sitting around in your room during the day. But it made us very happy. You can see another way to live. And this is one of the most important reasons for travel.

Signora Chiara, thank you for sharing Fattoria Mose with us.

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank JohnKappa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Boston
Level 6 Contributor
95 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 80 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 April 2014

This accommodation was the biggest disappointment of our trip to Sicily. Based on TA reviews and quite charming and polite correspondence with the proprietress in advance of a prior, aborted trip, and based upon the proprietress's claim to culinary proficiency (she contributed recipes to her sister's memoir about growing up in the noble house), we chose Fattoria Mose for two nights, primarily to see the Valley of the Temples and Porto Empedocle, setting for the Montalbano crime novels.

On arrival on a hot lazy Sunday afternoon, Ms Agenello greeted us warmly and "interviewed" us over lemonade ("You tell me if there is not enough sugar," she dared, and smiled, "and I will go get more." ) During a pleasant al fresco conversation Chiara Agnello sussed us out and declared that she was "upgrading" our accommodation to a much larger apartment in the converted stables rather than the room we had specifically requested by email in the main house. The reason, she said, was that she had just had some house guests depart and the beds were not made. (Translation: "I am tired of having people in my house and since I am not full I will put you in the stable.)

Before I describe the room, during the interview we noted cats everywhere. Big ones. Baby ones. Striped ones. Solid coloured ones. Cats luxuriating in the shade. Cats rolling around on the ground. Cats occasionally strolling across the outdoor dining table ("Tsk, tsk. They know they are not supposed to do that! Naughty cat!") Did I mention I am extremely allergic to cats?

In our room we realized we were intended to spend the night in a duplex holiday apartment with three bedrooms intended for families on holiday. Not at all what we wanted. Two bathrooms. Who cares? The upstairs bath had a terrible odor that made my husband gag. Cleanliness in general was debatable. The kitchen had soiled oil cloth on the table. The bedrooms had mismatched furniture and saggy mattresses. The place was musty. No sooner had we brought our things in from the car than I found a small black cat in our apartment. We secured our things in a room, locked the doors and windows (so much for airing the place out!) and fled to the Turkish Steps for some sightseeing. Half way to Porto Empodocle we vowed to make the best of Fattoria Mose and look for a new place to stay the next night.

We booked dinner because the Fattoria Mose is secluded and dark and because of the proprietress's culinary credentials (she hosts "foodie" trips from England, we are told). Dinner was 25 euros a head. For this we were served very nice and very plain effortless food. A glass of white wine (Ms. Agnello does not drink) and some almonds as an aperitif with a pleasant economist from Verona who was clearly smitten by the hostess. The region's ubiquitous cherry tomatoes were, indeed, delicious, as another reviewer noted. ("The olive oil, if you want it, is over there," the hostess purred as she pointed to the condiment within arm's reach ... for her, before she sat down.) Some crusty bread (slightly stale cut ends from breakfast) served with a sun dried tomato "tapenade" which was quite good. Then came a bowl of boxed spaghetti with pesto. Again, the pesto of basil, rosemary, sage and almonds was well made. We did not eat too much for fear of ruining our appetite but the hostess leaned over and whispered, "when the sun goes down, I will go in an make an omelette." This sounded almost like a threat. We ate more pesto as the cats looked on (their bowls are lined up not far from the outdoor dining table.) The omelette was the protein course and it was proficient, as omelets go. Just egg. Browned. A bit overcooked. (Be advised you will never eat fish here because the hostess does not care for the bother of cooking it, she said earlier in the evening.) Dessert was a macedoine of local fruit. It was good. No cake. No biscuit. No digestive. Just a good night. This meal was perfectly fine and I would prepae it myself after work some evening. It was healthful and filling. But by comparison a meal the next evening in Ragusa cost the same 50 euros and was an amazing journey of culinary pride and tradition and flavor in very hospitable setting.)

Next morning we ate a passable breakfast (bread, cereal, yogurt and bright spot of homemade jam), visited the temples quickly before the sun got too hot, and returned to explain to the hostess that our allergies were bothered by the unacceptable situation of cats entering our room. ("Oh, I don't know how that could happen?" she bristled. Well, maybe, just maybe, it is through the broken window screens with holes clearly large enough for a cat to enter. She immediately became more relaxed when we handed over 150 euros in cash for the one night we spent and the pesto and omelette we had consumed.

"You will need to leave through the back gate," she advised. "I have a tour bus coming for lunch and it will be blocking the main drive."

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
4 Thank amhjr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
North Vancouver, Canada
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 December 2013

We have a nice stay for three nights at Fattoria Mose just outside of Agrigento. The agriturismo is very well located to visit the Valley of the Temples. It is an easy drive of less than 10 minutes. Chiara was very helpful with information about the nearby sites. We had two meals at the agriturismo which were very enjoyable social evenings with the other guests. The other night we ate at a nearby restaurant, Kokalos, and it was very good.

Stayed October 2013, travelled with family
Helpful?
1 Thank Tuckerman99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Toronto, Canada
Level 5 Contributor
63 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 October 2013

This was the first of 3 very different Agriturismo that we stayed at during our trip to Sicily. As we have now completed our trip, the contrast of stays is quite drastic. "Oh, the dump", is how my husband refers to Fattoria Mose. This is too strong a description. The reality is, the property is beautiful in a rustic way. The bones of the buildings have great charm. Unfortunately, the main house, as well as the apartment that we stayed in, were extremely musty. Our allergies were raging and stopped once we departed. The painter made a mess of the beautiful wooden ceilings in the apartment we stayed in. The plastic Ikea cups in the kitchen had black mold growing in them. The floors required that I wear flip flops around the apartment. I wore these same flip flops while I showered. The beds were the firmest (please read this a rock hard) that I have ever encountered, worldwide. The price point for this accommodation was higher than the other 2 locations that we stayed and there was no advantage for this location. There was also no air conditioning. (All of the other locations had A/C.)
The breakfast (not included with the price of the apartment) was substandard. There was no variation each morning. The coffee was the worst coffee offered anywhere on our 12 day trip. I have never had bad coffee in Italy except here. There is a significant fly issue on the breakfast terrace, the back porch, near the pool. relaxing in the hammock seemed to be a treat to be had, until the flies started nibbling on you.
As the location is somewhat remote and the roads are quite dark, we chose to eat at Fattoria Mose. The best things offered for dinner were the incredible tomatoes and the fresh pressed olive oil. But this is not enough to charge 25 Euro per person for a buffet dinner. The pasta casserole with a spattering of beef was average. We had eaten this dish twice previously on the trip and this was the driest rendition offered. Dessert was 2 types for tart, no fruit and no coffee was offered.
What was offered was a wonderful opportunity to meet other guests and to chat with Chiara, who is a very interesting and hard working woman.
We decided to brave the roads on our second night and try a fish restaurant (Kokalos, with an incredible view of the Valley of the Temples, lit up) that was a highlight of the area.
The grounds are a huge farm, which is wonderful to walk around, and that is part of the agriturismo experience.
We might suggest that the cleanliness, attention to linen/towels/soaps, quality of the mattresses, coffee and dinner be better attended to, or at the very least, reflected in the price, so the expectation for the stay would not be so high and hence the disappointment so great.

  • Stayed October 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank MC0959
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sacramento, California
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 October 2013

Six of us (three couples) spent an evening at this wonderful location in October. We were greeted warmly and had comfortable rooms. We loved walking around the grounds; with an old olive grove and fabulous views...and a pool. It was a breathtaking walk. The people were lovely; so warm and welcoming. We opted to also purchase their dinner and sat with people from several countries. The homemade food was delicious and the menu was varied; lots of wine and great conversations. Breakfast was also delicious with a Sicilian breakfast of cheese, sausage, fruit, yogurt, jams etc etc. They produce delicious olive oil and other products to sell. We enjoyed sitting in the living room and seeing the 5 generations of family pictures. The ruins were close by, but unfortunately we had thunderstorms the morning we planned to visit. We will definitely return to this lovely setting.

  • Stayed October 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank 365JTB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Fattoria Mose

Property: Fattoria Mose
Address: Via Mattia Pascal 4 | Villaggio Mose, 92100, Agrigento, Sicily, Italy
Region: Italy > Sicily > Province of Agrigento > Agrigento
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 67 Speciality Lodging in Agrigento
Number of rooms: 7
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Mose farm is 4 kilometers from the Valley of Temples in Agrigento and 3 kilometers from the sea. On our organic farm we produce oranges, almonds, pistachios, fruit and vegetables, wheat and extra virgin olive oil in a very old olive's wood. The same family has ruled the farm from the 18th century and in 1995 it was open to hospitality. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Fattoria Mose Agrigento, Sicily
Fattoria Mose Hotel Agrigento

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