My wife and I planned a Post-Cruise visit to the walled hill towns in Umbria and Tuscany. Using a very popular guide book (RS Italy) we found an a most friendly farm stay - Agriturismo Cioccoleta that sounded exactly like we imagined we'd love. By email we easily secured the reservation so, "Now we have a plan!" Since we'd be driving a rented car I found the GPS coordinates (42.738385°/12.076764°) for the "leave the paved road" at the Subaru dealer that you'd would expect from an agriturismo lodging (42.737485°/12.063408°.) We had arranged for the room on the second floor with the window facing that has the clear "picture frame view" of Orvieto a few kilometers in the distance. When we arrived we were greeted by Angela and Federico her young son. She took us to the dining area and served us a refreshing glass of water. The dining room was once the farm livestock stable but you'd never guess that by sitting in it. Windows on two sides look out through the fruit trees, over the vineyards and toward the hills and lovely Orvieto.
After enjoying a relaxing chat with Angela we were taken to see the room we'd reserved. Angela explained, upon our arrival and after seeing my wife's limited mobility, that we might prefer one of the two rooms downstairs. The room with the "picture frame view" of Orvieto was delightfully charming but my wife's recent stroke had left her weak and she chose the downstairs room over the view. It worked out very nicely. The room on the first floor was large, clean, comfortable and very nicely appointed. The only downside to the downstairs was that the Wifi didn't reach through the thick stone walls. (WiFi was great just outside the room in the reception area.) This downside was more than compensated by the easy access and the very large quiet room. The windows in this room had "cabinet door shutters" that provided a great darkness for sleeping late into the morning. When weather turned too cool, Angela turned on the heat to insure our complete satisfaction.
Once we were settled in and Angela's husband, Alessandro, returned home we met again with both Angela and Alessandro regarding local dining for the evening meal. They gave us very easily followed directions to a restaurant (Ristorante Girarrosto del Buongustaio) on a hill that looked over the walled town of Orvieto. As we drove out the gravel road we came upon a beautiful ring-neck pheasant with two hens and one very large rabbit.
The next morning both Angela and Alessandro served a beautiful breakfast to the handful of guests. It was perfect. After breakfast they gave easily followed directions to drive to the unique hill town of Civita di Bagnoregio. We had time to visit both Civita and Orvieto on the first full day. That evening we took dinner in a wine bar in Orvieto.
Alessandro and Angela told us that the next day was Italy's "Open Cellar Day." That meant special events at all of the local wineries. Again, clear and easily followed directions took us to 4 local wine cellars where a party atmosphere elevated a wine tasting to wine and food pairings special events. Another great day in Umbria!
The other guests at Cioccoleta were a friendly mix of europeans Australians and North Americans. The environment was casual, comfortable and quite enjoyable.
As of May 2013 the Alessandro and Angela increasing the size of their personal accommodations with the result that a small area of the grounds is taped-off as a construction zone. This turned out to be an completely insignificant factor in our stay but needed to be included in this review just because. . .
While we stayed only three nights at Agriturismo Cioccoleta we would clearly stay there again if the opportunity presents itself. If you crave the relaxing environment and casual pace of a farm stay in Umbria you will find exactly what you seek at Angela and Alessandro's comfortable home in the midst of Umbrian beauty. You won't go wrong!
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