It was overcast at home in Scarperia (unusual in itself) and by the time we hit Florence the skies had opened and we felt our first downpour in 3 1/2 months. The car's thermometer also plummeted - from a chilly 22 degrees at home to 15 by the time we hit Greve In Chianti - our first destination. Chianti is very different to The Mugello - at home we lie in a fairly flat valley surrounded by mountains but Chianti is filled with rolling hill after rolling hill each one covered by vines or olive trees. At home, the ground is dry and brown but Chianti must surely have its own micro-climate as it's so lush with a brilliant colour of green.
We had initially decided to stop in Greve In Chianti but as we're no longer used to rainfall we were totally underdressed and under-umbrellared (i.e none) so we moved on to Radda In Chianti, where we rushed into the historic walled town to buy umbrellas, hoping to then wander around and settle on a cosy pizzeria for lunch. The small walled town was beautiful but we found no pizzeria (and were at this stage, starving) so we drove on until we hit Gaiole In Chianti. The first restaurant we came across in Gaiole was brilliant - just what we were looking for - fantastic pizzas, cheap wine, family atmosphere, yummy Tirimasu, cheap wine!! So we ate, then drove home via Montevarchi.
I think we will have to drive through Chianti again as I don't think we saw it at its best...but here are some pictures taken on our trip today to show you what it looks like at its worst. Not too bad considering.
P.S. I need to confess that the smudging on the photos is not due to some fancy filter but to a 2-year old's peanut butter fingers!