REVIEW

Podere Terreno

Vineyards encircle the house, and each guest room is named for a local grape.

By Reid Bramblett, Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005, 12:07 PM

Podere Terreno

About this Hotel

Price From $231

Roberto Melosi left a career at London's Savoy to become chef and host of an agriturismo—an inn on a working farm in Italy. His Paris-born wife, Marie-Sylvie Haniez, who had owned a modern art gallery in Florence, decided the only way to run an agriturismo was to share communal dinners with their guests.

Together, they manage a restored 16th-century farmhouse, which has seven country-comfy rooms furnished with a hodgepodge of painted metal bedsteads, carved wood vanities, and worn terra-cotta floors.

Credit for the vineyard's light, organic Chianti Classico goes to Marie-Sylvie's adult son, Pier Francesco, who gave up dirt bike racing to study viticulture and enology.

Wine obviously means a lot to the family: Vineyards encircle the house, and each guest room is named for a local grape. Malvasia, Trebbiano, Vernaccia, and Ciliegiolo are all on the east side of the house, which has the best vineyard views.

In summer, guests enjoy three-hour family-style dinners on the patio that may include lasagne, steaks, and stuffed tomatoes.

On cooler days, dinner moves inside to a common room, where copper pots dangle from thick wood beams and the stone walls are decorated with oil paintings and ceramics.

The room's seven-foot fireplace, which dates back to the 14th century, is surrounded by armchairs.

There's also a wine-tasting cantina and a tiny spa with a Jacuzzi and massage table.

Includes breakfast and dinner.

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