After breakfast, the group boarded the bus for the hour or so drive to Bergamo, one of the lovely hilltop towns in Lombardy. The group met up with the wonderful tour guide, Elena, and the tour began in the main piazza.
The beautiful Bergamo Cathedral was next.
After the cathedral visit it was time for lunch. On the way, the group passed some witches filming a vacuum commercial and a couple of interesting shop windows.
Lunch included such taste treats as polenta with rabbit, ravioli stuffed with bacon and ricotta, pasta with mushrooms, risotto and finished with an introduction to the excellent “affogato” or ice cream with espresso coffee poured over the top.
The group passed a particularly nice-looking pasticceria (bakery) and one of the ladies purchased some lovely meringues to take home for dessert later that evening.
The ladies left Bergamo and were driven the 40 minutes or so to Franciacorta, with the beautiful view of the foothills of the Alps in the distance. There had been rain in Bergamo but it cleared up as Castelveder Winery came within sight. The adorable Camilla (who runs the winery with her brother and her grandmother) provided an excellent tour of the winery and the classical methods used there to produce a particularly high quality sparkling wine. The grandmother came by to say hello, which was a lovely treat for the group. The favorite of the day was the Satin, and several bottles were procured to enjoy at the villa the rest of the week.
After the tour and tasting, there was time to walk in the stunning vineyards and see the pinot nero and chardonnay grapes that are grown there. There’s a cycling path in Franciacorta and perhaps someday it would lovely to try that…
Dinner that night at the villa was preceded by a sip of the Casteveder rose and included veal meatballs and artichokes and a salad, and, of course, the meringues.
Franciacorta, the wine country near the lovely Lake Iseo, is one of Italy’s best kept secrets for wine lovers. Franciacorta´s bubblies are considered to be the crème de la crème of sparkling wines in Italy: In 1995 Franciacorta was given D.O.C.G. (Denomination of Origin Controlled and Guaranteed) status, a significant testimonial to its winemakers’ continuing commitment to excellent work and to further improving the quality of Franciacorta wines.
Not only is this region the perfect wine tasting excursion from Poggio Verde as it is just about an hour drive: it is also a natural and cultural enclave where all your tastes for art, history and the outdoor life can be gratified. The lures of the place are indeed many and varied: as much spectacular nature as anyone could ever want, Lake Iseo and its marvelous island, castles and much more.
Here you can find some hints to orient yourself in the kingdom of wine.
Ca’ del Bosco opens its cellars for tours designed to give wine enthusiasts first-hand knowledge of how Franciacorta is made and to guide them around the vineyards at the winery. A walk through the Ca’ del Bosco barrique cellars, historic repositories of art and innovation, takes visitors to the Cupola. Here, at the heart of the estate, a glass of wine awaits to reveal the secrets behind a great passion. Via Albano Zanella, 13 – Erbusco (BS) Phone: +39 030 7766111 Email: email@example.com
La Montina has always been an open cellar: wine lovers who come on guided tours with ‘degustazione’ (wine tasting) are welcomed. You will be told about the Franciacorta’s complex journey from vineyard to bottle and you will discover the passion, history and hard work that goes into every elegant and persistent bubble of our sapid and wonderfully fresh Franciacorta. Moreover, La Montina has been recognised as having the highest standards for welcoming and accommodating visitors of all the estates In Franciacorta. Via Baiana, 17 – 25040 Monticelli Brusati (BS) Phone: +39030653278
Contadi Castaldi, a winery which originally was a brickyard, is highly specialized company in the art of innovation, which searched the Franciacorta region to find the most evocative vineyards and the most passionate winegrowers. Its large spaces and long tunnels where the bricks were fired proved to be the perfect place for ageing Franciacorta vintages and welcoming wine lovers. Via Colzano, 32, 25030 Adro, Franciacorta (Brescia) Phone: +39 030 745 0126 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
One of the loveliest historic wineries in the Franciacorta appellation, Il Mosnel Winery produces a range of excellent still wines and Bollicine (“Bubbles”). it’s a beautiful historic estate located near the medieval village of Rodengo.This winery could be one of your favorite wineries in Franciacorta for the quality of the wines, the beauty of the estate and the hospitality. Via Barboglio, 14 – 25040 Camignone – Brescia (BS)Phone: +39.030.653117
Another top-quality winery is Berlucchi, where a professional guide will accompany you as you discoverall of the places where Franciacorta’s history was written, those halls, alcoves, and underground passages where tradition and innovation meet and shake hands. Of course, to fully enjoy this moment of relax you can taste and savour Berucchi’s fine selection of Franciacorta. Piazza Duranti, 4, 25040, Corte Franca (BS), Phone: +39 030 984381 Email: email@example.com
Bersi Serlini is one of the oldest wineries in Franciacorta. The location is stunning, close to Lake Iseo and set amid picturesque vineyards, where you can’t miss the chance to taste an excellent glass of wine. The winery and hospitality area has been renovated by Italian designer Flavio Albanese, giving the impressive property a modern and luminous appearance through the use of glass and wood that is striking and contemporary. Via Cerreto 4 and 7 , Provaglio d’Iseo (Bs) 25050, Italy. Phone: +39 0309823338 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org