General Comments


(8/05)—We took the walk you suggested walk in Pitigliano and it was some of the most awesome scenery we encountered. We would suggest that you revisit the path suggestion on page 320 regarding the alternative of taking the turnoff before the T-junction “G”. This trail may have been washed out in rains since your writing but now it is very steep, requires some strength and adult size to safely negotiate this terrain. We needed to put on our gloves and use hiking poles. This climb down was great and intriguing but we would suggest that it is for adults but not a walk in the woods for kids.

My wife and I thank you for your great book and support of our walking across Tuscany.
—Bary C. Sherman, USA

(5/05)—We did three of the walks from your book Walking and Eating in Tuscany and found them all very enjoyable.

The first walk we did (15 April 2005) was from Pienza to Montepulciano. The book says this can be done in 3 to 4 hours, but it took us almost six hours. We weren’t quite prepared for the amount of climbing involved. We found one small problem at point E. We did not find the path sign marking the turn, the road was blocked by a gate, and a new house had been built on the property. We climbed another 200 m on the road to Monticchiello and turned left. The path connected with the original one on the other side of the new house. Also when we came to the “streambed” mentioned as being 1 km from E, we found the streambed filled with water. Thankfully we found a small stone bridge hidden in the undergrowth about 20 meters farther on.

Despite these minor difficulties we enjoyed the walk enormously and decided to do as many more as time permitted.

(5/05)—This is a beautiful walk, one of the most scenic and historic we did. The long hot dusty road you refer to on page 320 is now a long burning hot black asphalt road (still quiet) with views of Pitigliano. Your readers should be aware that when they turn right at point E on the map it is now a black tarmac road.

The restaurant in the Jewish quarter is closed on Tuesday as your book said and of course we chose Tuesday for our walk. This is typical of most things you do in Italy as the stores will be closed in the afternoon when you need to shop and restaurants are closed until 7:30 by which time you are ravenous.

However, I can recommend another new restaurant in town (Pitigliano) opened in December. The Il Castello, Enoteca Degustazione Ristorante, looks as expensive and pretentious as its name. White table clothes, ultra modern furniture, frigid air-conditioning and wine for sale all warn of a tourist trap. But the food we had was unusual…pasta made of chopped up crepes with flavorful artichoke sauce and fried ricotta cheese on a bed of fresh arugula. Wines can be sampled by the glass and the waiters recommendations were excellent and cheap. Local merchants from town were also eating here and commented on the reasonable prices. Dinner for two with way too much wine sampled came to 55 Euros. Try and get one of the more inviting tables outside and watch the sun set on the town square. Entertainment is provided by the pigeons trying to drown themselves in the central fountain.

Il Castello’s address is Piazza Della Repubbilca 92 tel. 0564-617061. Large red sign, on the main square on the north east corner, impossible to miss.
—David and Ina, Toronto, Canada