This article originally appeared in
sponsored by
Welcome to Montalcino
TALK magazine published by
Orascom Telecom in Cairo, Egypt.
All rights reserved.

From a distance, the hilltop town of Montalcino
looks like an island dramatically rising above a
sea of wheat fields, pastures, and, of course,
the celebrated Brunello vineyards that make the
town famous.

But Montalcino's architecture has plenty to
recommend it as well. From beyond the city's
walls, the view is dominated by the 14th-century
Rocca fortress that once protected the city from
raiders coming from Florence to the north,
and the 15th-century Palazzo Vescovile (the
Bishop's Palace), home to three small but
extraordinarily well-appointed museums.

The best way to experience the architecture
of this characteristic Tuscan town is by
wandering its narrow winding streets.
The city has only a few significant attention-
grabbing buildings, which makes it easier to concentrate on more subtle things. The city has a
timeless quality that offers a kind of history visitors can touch and feel.

Every doorway or alley seems to hold a story -- mostly dating back to the 1400s, when the city was the
last corner of the Republic of Siena to surrender to the Medicis from Florence and their French and
Spanish allies. That was the city's proudest moment -- citizens still sometimes call the town "The
Republic of Siena in Montalcino" on particularly patriotic occasions.
         Italian Wine Primer

         Welcome to Montalcino

         Slow Cities

         Roman Coffee Break

Summer 2006