The family farm, where the entire Moricciani Family lives, is a short, five-minute drive from Cretaiole. It is called Podere San Gregorio and is located on the edge of the town of Pienza, just one-minute walk from the old walls of the town.
There are two houses on the farm—the main one is a two-story building, called San Gregorio, that was originally built in the 13th century as a convent for Benedictine nuns. Luciano and Liliana moved into San Gregorio in 1967, and there had their children, Carlo and Laura. Laura also lives in San Gregorio. In 2003, the family built another home on the property, adjacent to San Gregorio, to be the home for Carlo and Isabella and their children.
The Moricciani’s welcome their guests to come for a tour of their family farm! You will really enjoy seeing firsthand what it is like to live on a Tuscan farm, what small animals and crops are raised, and of course, to see the baby animals that are always a delight for young children (of all ages!!!!). You can see rabbits, guinea hens, domestic pigeons, chickens, ducks, geese, turkeys, piglets, and guinea pigs!
Guests who are fortunate to be there during the vendemmia (the grape harvest) are able to join in the fun and excitement of bringing in the grapes—a special event that is the climax to the growing season. Each fall the Moricciani’s await the vendemmia, anxiously wondering how the grapes will taste, and what quality of wine they will produce. You must realize that they cherish their wine—their “nectar of the gods”—because it is essential to their lives.
Even if it is not harvest time, you can always visit their wine cellar where they produce their delicious Orcia Rosso DOC and their fruity white wine. They will be happy to describe for you their winemaking process and let you taste the wine directly from the oak barrels!
Next to the cellar is where they store their extra virgin olive oil—in large terracotta vases in which the sedimentation of the olive oil takes place, as has been done for centuries. Smelling the olive oil directly from the big vases is heavenly!
Guests are able to purchase Cretaiole’s Orcia Rosso DOC wine made with 100% Sangiovese grapes (the same used for other Tuscan wines such as Brunello and Rosso di Montalcino), and Cretaiole’s pungent IGP Toscano extra virgin olive oil. The olives are picked during the end of the year (October-December), always by hand—never mechanically, and taken to the olive press immediately! You can smell and taste the freshness—and you may agree that it is the most delicious olive oil you have ever tasted. Try it!
The farm has 80 hectares (approx 200 acres) of fields, orchards, and gardens for growing olives, grapes, wheat, barley, fava beans, and a wide variety of vegetables and fruits. Liliana and Luciano are magical with their gardens and animals—producing bountiful results for their very traditional daily Tuscan cuisine. Liliana is a superb cook, creating scrumptious meals with the barest of ingredients—but the finest ingredients that nature has to offer anywhere in the world!
For their family’s use, the farm produces a variety of meats such as sausage, prosciutto, and salami; fresh eggs; pecorino cheese aged in walnut leaves; more than a dozen types of vegetables; fruits such as plums, figs, walnuts, persimmons, and almonds; herbs such as rosemary, sage, chives, thyme, parsley, marjoram, borage, and mint; and home made liquers, Luciano’s Grappa and Vin Santo are simply the best!
Their tasting tours are a special treat for the guests, giving them the opportunity to taste many of the family’s farm products. This is a perfect activity for you to experience Tuscany’s finest qualities—its food and wine!!!!
For additional photos of this section, click here