San Gimignano, Tuscany, Italy 12/2013

February 8, 2014

Christmas 2013

We’re playing catch up again. In case you wondered where we were and what we did for Christmas, here’s a brief report. Leaving Pisa behind us we followed secondary roads through beautiful Tuscany of Italy. The scenery was truly everything we could have expected from this famous region, even in wintertime.

Chief navigator Monika was searching the map for a small village as a friendly place to hang out. By chance she found San Gimignano and the nice Santa Chiara campground within walking distance.

Even now, the day before Christmas, there were several other people traveling who had discovered San Gimignano, a small walled medieval hill town in the province of Siena, Tuscany, north-central Italy. Famous for its medieval architecture and well-preserved towers, its hilltop setting and encircling walls formed an unforgettable skyline.

Before leaving Nice, France, we had raided the local supermarkets for some special Christmas treats. The menu for Christmas Eve included escargot with an herb butter sauce served with Trebbiano wine and Monika’s family’s traditional recipe of “Pastetli”, little puff pastries overflowing with a creamy meat and mushroom filling. Dessert was, what else, a fresh Italian Panettone with dried fruit, nuts and raisins.

On Christmas Day Santa Claus had some inventive ways of making his deliveries including ladders up the back of several motorhomes and climbing ropes to balconies. We took the opportunity to stroll around the cobbled streets of San Gimignano without the hordes of tourists that crowd this World Heritage Site town during Summer.

For our feast on this special day, we started with a little Foie de Gras and a chilled Sauterne before moving on to some barbecued veal chops and a tradition in Gary’s family, fresh raviolis with a butter-garlic sauce and some grated sharp Italian Parmesan. We didn’t have a white Christmas, but the ice on The Turtle V’s hood in the morning was enough to remind us it was winter.

Not willing to stop celebrating, we had a wonderful dinner the next evening at Santa Chiara RV Park’s cozy restaurant where we enjoyed one of the best wood-fired baked pizzas we’ve ever had. Joining us were Steve, Dawn and Ali, a Scottish/Turkish family who had been camping next to us. The owner of the restaurant and campground was a great guy and he even presented us with a bottle of his own red wine!


One Response to “San Gimignano, Tuscany, Italy 12/2013”

  1. Christmas 2013 We’re playing catch up again. In case you wondered where we were and what we did for Christmas,…

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