Thursday Doors: Montepulciano, Italy

 

Il Sasso, Montepulciano, Italy
Montepulciano, Italy
Montepulciano, Italy
Montepulciano, Italy
Montepulciano, Italy

Ciao! This week I got an email from an American woman contemplating going to learn Italian in Montepulciano, Italy.  Three years ago, I traveled to Montepulciano to attend Il Sasso, an Italian language school. I had traveled to Italy for many years and just fell in love with the country and the people. Then I decided to take it a step further and attend a language school there. All in all, that summer I spent six weeks in Italy.  The first three weeks at the school and then a week each  in Cinque Terre, Orvieto and Rome, Italy.  All four areas were very different from one another! It was one of the best times ever in Italy! Montepulciano is a very small village nestled on a Tuscan hilltop, and the school is top notch too. I spent my time interacting with other students from all over the world, who were in age from 18 to 85! We were in small classes and new students arrived every week. So we met a lot of different students! We had two sessions a day, with two different teachers so we could get used to different sounding speech patterns and teaching ideas, and from Day One the students were completely immersed in the language. No more English for three weeks!  The students were placed in separate classes from beginners to advanced, and the teachers were very knowledgeable at being able to place you in the correct class upon arrival and moved you right along as the weeks went by! Their methods of teaching included lots of conversations between student and teacher and student with student. There was a great deal of role playing, where we would  re-enact different situations; like shopping, using money, eating in a restaurant, etc.  The first agenda of the Monday morning class was sharing with the class what we did over the weekend. Trying to figure all that out in Italian was fun! We laughed a lot! Of course all of these lessons helped us when we did all of these things in real time! Since the village is small and everyone knew everyone, the shop owners, villagers and restaurant workers also played a big role in our Italian education!

Cantina Crociani and Wine Shop, Montepulciano, Italy
Sax Wine Bar and Restaurant, Montepulciano, Italy

The two wine establishments pictured were literally next door to my apartment in Montepulciano. The Sax Wine Bar served food and wine and the Cantina Crociani was a wine cellar and tasting room! Not bad eh? Just two establishments from MANY to choose from everyday!

The View, Montepulciano, Italy

The view from my second floor apartment was incredible! Imagine waking up to this every morning!

The View, Montepulciano, Italy

And looking from my terrace window! And…. the terrace door!

The View, Montepulciano, Italy

And looking at my terraced garden in the back! Isn’t this the view and village everyone one thinks about when wanting to visit Italy? I think so!

The View, Montipulciano, Italy

There were also field trips to  local markets on market day and  excursions to nearby villages.  Local cooking classes were also available as a field trip experience.   Since all of these adventures were “Italian Speaking Only” even the field trips were learning experiences.

 

Market in Montepulciano, Italy

Wild boar is a big deal here and very tasty! Would you like a selection of formaggio? Or prosciutto, porchetta, salumi or pane? No problema!

Market in Montepulciano, Italy
Fava Beans with a Dip! YUM!
Montepulciano, Italy

We certainly ate well here! Montepulciano is known for their famous wine, Vino Nobile di Montepulciano, a  Tuscan wine made from  Sangiovese and other grapes. We didn’t lack good wine either!

My time in Montepulciano was spent studying the language and learning the culture of Italy. But, it also included a wealth of memories and friends that I have kept in touch with since leaving the school.  Everyone was eager to make us welcome and share in their experiences! If you would like to know more about Il Sasso look HERE.  Or if you have other questions about the school or village during my time there, just ask! More in Italy next week! Arrivederci!

This is just one of many photos in the Thursday Door Collection featured by Norm2.0!   Won’t you join in or take a peak at all the doors?

20 Comments Add yours

  1. Sherry Felix says:

    What a lovely place. I went to Sienna many years ago. Italy is charming. I love the people, the food and especially the scenary.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes Italy is one of my favorites too!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Sherry Felix says:

        Something special about the light there.

        Like

  2. Excellent! I love your views, doors and joy. Haven’t been to Montepulciano yet but it’s on my list. I’ve just checked: I need almost exactly two hours to reach it.

    Everything about Italy is exactly like you say and show, except I haven’t done any Italian-language school. I used to run one, back home in Slovenia at age 23, with my first boyfriend who was half Italian, half Croatian. We did some cooking with our students too. But the way we did carbonara makes amore giggle now. 😀

    One of my biggest surprises was fave. To eat a lupine raw?? Not in my home we didn’t.

    Like

    1. Manja, Hi! We peeled the fava beans and ate the peas inside, yummy! Oh, I am glad you are so close to Montepulciano! You may want to stop off either coming or going at Orvieto too, they are close. Pienza is another small village close by that I really like! Oh, there are just too many beautiful villages in Italy! The women who run Il Sasso certainly have a booming enterprise!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That’s true, Italy is full of beauty. Siena is north of me, but Orvieto is east, they are not close from where I stand. I’ll visit Montepulciano next time I go to Siena. And also, Orvieto and Pienza are on my top ten Italian town list which I posted recently:
        https://manjameximovie.wordpress.com/2017/03/04/wpc-top-ten-roads-taken/

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I’ve never been to Montepulciano, but I’ve heard of it and its beauty. Your post only reinforces what I heard/read and instill a desire in me to go back to Italy (first time was in the mid-seventies, so quite long ago!) What a beautiful place you had and were in!! I’ve never had fava beans, although they certainly appear in many Italian cookbooks and travel books. Thanks for sharing this beautiful post.

    janet

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Janet! You would absolutely love Italy!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. restlessjo says:

    It sounds an ideal way to learn. 🙂 In at the deep end!

    Like

    1. Exactly the way I felt the first evening at the Meet and Greet! I finally and very quietly leaned in and whispered to a fellow older student, “Do you speak English?” She affirmed and we became fast friends! Ha Ha!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Norm 2.0 says:

    Wonderful post! Oh this so makes me want to go back to Italy. The narrow cobblestone streets and alleyways…so much charm.
    I really love the sink or swim approach to learning the language. I’m sure it can be frustrating at times but it’s a great way to learn 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Beautiful place and photos.

    Like

  7. I love Italy – especially the small, picturesque villages. Thanks for sharing your beautiful pictures. :o)

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Timelesslady says:

    Great doors, and the food is making me hungry!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know, nothing beats Italian food right?

      Like

      1. Timelesslady says:

        I love Italian food!

        Like

  9. What an amazing little place. Need to add this on to my italian bucket list!

    Like

  10. Absolutely loved Montepulciano. Unfortunately we were only here one night. We will have to return. Great pics. 😉

    Like

    1. Love, love, love Montepulciano!

      Like

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