Radda in Chianti: what to see, where to eat and where to sleep
Discovering the village of the vineyards between famous castles, wineries, restaurants and tips for where to sleep
Radda in Chianti is the village of the vineyards, it is not by chance that the Consorzio del Chianti Classico, founded in 1924, has its headquarters here. A small village in the province of Siena, one hour from Florence, located in a wonderful exposure, on the border between the Val d'Arbia and Val di Pesa. Well protected, at least in part, by its defensive walls, a small pearl set in the jewel that is Chianti, of which not to be missed are also Panzano and Greve (in the direction of Florence) and Gaiole (in the direction of Siena).
The territory is crossed by some torrential water courses which give name to the surrounding valleys. Here are born the Pesa, from the slopes of Pian d'Albola, and the Greve, which originates from Mount Querciabella, both tributaries of the Arno.
Of the castles in the Radda territory, only Volpaia had a certain development, with a wide circle of walls with towers and a keep that is still largely preserved, while other castles have come down to us very fragmented, such as Albola and Monterinaldi, or transformed into villas, such as Castelvecchi, or into farmhouses, such as Castiglione, il Trebbio and Paternò. Other rural dwellings preserve the tower structures of the medieval "ladies' houses": this is the case of Borraccoli, Camporempoli, Casa Vecchia, Montevertine, Palazzo Pornano, le Ripe and Fornale. Selvole, on the other hand, seems to have always had the characteristics of a rural, non-fortified village. Among the elegant buildings, it is worth mentioning the beautiful manor house Le Marangole, located not far from the village center.
WHAT TO SEE IN RADDA IN CHIANTI:
It is the heart of the village, dominated by what remains of the original castle. The Palazzo del Podestà, a splendid example of 15th century architecture, with an extension in the 18th century, historical seat of the Municipality since 1865, and the Propositura di San Niccolò of Romanesque origins, with a neo-gothic facade, designed by Adolfo Coppedè in the 1920s, face onto Piazza Ferrucci.
While you enjoy a stroll through the small streets of the center, take a look at the charming walled gardens bordered by dry stone walls, a perfect expression of the agricultural essence of Chianti.
Santa Maria al Prato
Circonvallazione Santa Maria
Among the various traces of Romanesque architecture scattered throughout the territory of Radda, a stone's throw from the historic center, stands the church of Santa Maria al Prato which houses a fifteenth-century Madonna and Child by Neri di Bicci.
WHAT TO SEE IN THE SURROUNDINGS OF RADDA IN CHIANTI:
Pieve di Santa Maria Novella
Just outside the village of Radda you can visit the Pieve di Santa Maria Novella that, despite having undergone numerous renovations, has managed to preserve its original Romanesque structure, as well as numerous works of art. The interior has three naves ending in as many apses, divided by arches in succession.
Castello di Volpaia
Piazza della Torre, 2,
ph. +39 0577 738066
Of the many castles built in the territory of Radda, the one of Volpaia certainly deserves a visit, even more unmissable for wine lovers, as it is an important winery of the area where since 1172 are produced great Chianti Classico in organic farming, which also organizes tastings with visits to its unusual environments. Today, as in the XI century, the whole village is involved in the production of wine and oil. The vat cellars and the wine cellars are still housed in the basements, in the deconsecrated churches and in the buildings of the village, linked together by an amazing underground "vinoduct". Volpaia is also the perfect place for an enchanting stay, choosing between the two Villas - two ancient farmhouses perfectly restored, one on the edge of the village and the other surrounded by nature located two kilometers away - two apartments and three rooms for rent. You should also try the Osteria and the Forno, where, in addition to bread, they prepare tasty pizzas, focaccia, cakes and traditional dishes to be enjoyed in the small square in front.
Panzano in Chianti
Less than 20 minutes away from Radda, a small medieval village with enchanting views and excellent restaurants, including those of Dario Cecchini, famous butcher poet. To learn more about Panzano in Chianti, what to see and where to eat, click here.
Greve in Chianti
Another small pearl of Chianti, perhaps one of the most famous. What should you not miss if you visit? Click here!
Gaiole in Chianti
Have you already heard about it? Very likely, because it is here that L'Eroica, a famous bicycle race was born, and it is always from here that the Strada del Castelli del Chianti, a route between art and nature really spectacular, starts. Click here for our special itinerary in Gaiole in Chianti.
WHERE TO EAT IN RADDA IN CHIANTI AND SURROUNDINGS:
Before discovering the best restaurants in Greve, click here if you want to know our selection of restaurants around Florence and here for that of the most beautiful wineries where to eat in Tuscany.
Casa del Chianti Classico
Circonvallazione Santa Maria, 18
ph. +39 347 251 5832
In the eighteenth-century convent next to the Church of Santa Maria al Prato, there is the Casa del Chianti Classico with an exclusive enoteca of Chianti Gallo Nero wines, the bistro Al Convento, which occupies the evocative spaces of the ancient refectory, of the cloister and of the large terrace overlooking the Chianti hills, a sensorial and informative path dedicated to wine and to the history of Chianti Classico, exhibition spaces, in-depth courses about wine (and not only).
La Bottega di Giovannino
Via Roma, 6
ph. +39 0577 738599
Characteristic Wine Bar Osteria with Enoteca, located in the historic center. It offers local products, first courses with fresh pasta, second courses, desserts. Small but cozy restaurant, family run.
Osteria Le Panzanelle
Località Lucarelli, 29
ph. +39 0577 733511
At 10 minutes from the village, in the locality of Lucarelli, to be mentioned the Osteria Le Panzanelle, with a menu based on local dishes, but which changes about once a month and according to the seasons. Try the soup, which varies according to what mother nature offers, but also the homemade pasta, in particular ravioli and gnudi. Among the second courses, the peposo, steak and tripe and to conclude in beauty the classic cantuccini with vinsanto.
WINERIES IN RADDA IN CHIANTI:
Località Colle Bereto
ph. +39 0577 738083
In Radda, in the heart of the most ancient area of Chianti Classico, since more than thirty years Pinzauti family, with the precious contribution of agronomist Bernardo Bianchi, makes this magic medieval village famous with few labels produced with meticulous care. Upon reservation it is possible to visit the winery and have tastings of the wines produced in Colle Bereto, under the guidance of Bernardo Bianchi, the winery manager. Besides the winery in its many parts and the vineyards, it is possible to visit the traditional oil mill and the orciaia, where the extra virgin olive oil is also produced.
Località Monteraponi, 1
ph. +39 0577 738208
In the heart of the historical Chianti area, Monteraponi, an ancient medieval village located on the homonymous hill, belonged to Count Ugo Marquis and governor of Tuscany at the end of the tenth century, who donated it to the abbey he founded in Poggio Martori (Poggibonsi Alto).the farm covers 200 hectares in a natural amphitheater exposed to the south and sheltered from the winds that blow from the north. Vineyards are spread on 12 hectares, olive groves on 8 hectares and the remaining are centenarian woods of oak and chestnut trees that surround the farm, making it isolated and protected. Tastings and visits in the cellar available from 9am to 5pm.
Località Poppi, 42/B
ph. +39 0577 741263
One of the most renowned wineries owned by Barbara Widmer. Its vineyards are located in the Poppi area in the commune of Radda in Chianti between 350 and 420 meters above sea level. Here are cultivated 55% of Sangiovese and 45% of Merlot.
Castello di Albola
Strada Provinciale 72
ph. +39 0577 738019
The medieval village of Castello di Albola rises on top of the splendid Chianti hills, in an incomparable place for the fascination of its history, for the fascination of its art and for its unique agro-landscape context of unsurpassed harmony. It belonged to the most noble Tuscan families, from the Acciaioli to the Samminiati, from the Pazzi to the Ginori Conti, and since 1979 it has been the property of the Zonin family, which has dedicated its best attention to it for forty years. The Zonin Family has also been committed to enlarge both the vineyards and the farm, which today extends for 900 hectares, more than 125 of which are cultivated with vines and where stand out more than 4 thousand olive trees.
WHERE TO SLEEP IN RADDA IN CHIANTI:
Borgo di Vescine
Località Vescine (Radda in Chianti - Siena)
ph. +39 0577 74 11 44
The Borgo di Vescine, initially a fortified bulwark of the Longobard era, has become over the centuries a farming village. It has recently been restored by Lucia Paladin who with love and passion has wanted and been able to restore to the Borgo the splendor, simplicity and quality of rural life of the past. Mrs. Paladin has also given a personal touch to the restoration of the village with the aim of creating an environment in which you can breathe that magical atmosphere of "home away from home" in the heart of Chianti. Not to be missed.
Relais Vignale & Spa
Via Pianigiani 9- Radda in Chianti (SI)
ph.+39 0577 738300
The silence and peace that reign at Relais Vignale find a perfect balance with the Spa, a refuge where you can pamper yourself in a regenerating atmosphere. Outside, the large swimming pool is immersed in a large flower garden on a panoramic terrace overlooking the Chianti hills. The restaurant is an authentic culinary excellence. Also located in a panoramic position, it is ideal to taste the delicacies of Tuscan cuisine. Complete your stay with the "experiences" of the Vignale: trekking, wine tasting, bike tours and other original activities designed to let you know the essence of Chianti.
HOW TO GET TO RADDA IN CHIANTI FROM FLORENCE:
Radda is the next stop after visiting Greve and Panzano. After leaving Panzano behind, the road makes a couple of tight turns and arrives to Gaiole and Radda. It's 11 km of a quiet country road. After about 10 km you pass under a red brick arch and come to a traffic circle and follow the signs for Radda.
HOW TO GET TO RADDA IN CHIANTI FROM SIENA:
Coming from Siena, you can either take the Firenze-Siena freeway, exiting at Badesse and following the signs for Castellina, and then continue on to Radda in Chianti, or you can take SR 222 directly after Siena and follow the road to Castellina and Radda.
Parking can be found either on the main road or around the city walls. Right next to the public park, there is a paid parking lot, another one is also located near the walls.