Saturday, 23 February 2013

Jamie's Great Italian Escape - E04 - Le Marche PART 3

Jamie's Great Italian Escape - E04 - Le Marche PART 2

Jamie's Great Italian Escape - E04 - Le Marche PART 1

Vino Cotto Production Area to be Revamped

The Cantina area of Cancello is has revealed so many secrets. The Vino Cotto production area sadly has to be demolished to make room for the Dining Room and formal Guest Lounge. 

The revamped area will open out onto the sun deck and pool and have amazing views over the Sibillini National park and the mountains.

We will be able to retain some of the features such as the fire place for roaring fires in the winter (and run the underfloor central heating).

There is also a "grape duct" that we will save. This runs through the house for three storeys from the village road side - it was used to unload the grapes and deposit them straight into the Cantina for treading.

Sadly the Vino Cotto boiler will have to go as it takes up too much room. However, we should be able to save the copper boiler and of course the antique barrels (date stamped 1904). Now the challenge is to find ways of recycling these.  Plant pots seems such a shame!

Vino cotto (literally cooked wine) is a form of wine from MarcheAbruzzo and Calabria in Southern Italy. It is typically made by individuals for their own use, rather than commercially, however, now becoming more popular and also known to chefs. The must, from any of several local varieties of grapes, is heated in a copper vessel where it is reduced in volume by up to a third. The must is not to undergo fermentation before it is heated. Once reduced and allowed to cool it is aged in storage for a few years. It is a ruby-colored wine, somewhat similar to Madeira, being slightly sweet with no alcohol content.

Thursday, 21 February 2013

Uncovering Residents of Yesteryear

More discoveries in the Cantina - this one reveals more of the previous owners of Cancello Est.

We think he is quite a dapper man and looks very smart in this picture.

His epitaph reads:

Husband and incomparable father who in 28 beautiful years of teaching at the elementary school placed in many precious young people seeds of knowledge and goodness. 

We are going to frame this to share the history of Cancello Est with guests and hopefully find more about the families who lived here over the centuries.

Monday, 18 February 2013

Trash or Treasure and a Coincidence

More gifts from the Cantina.  This plate may be rubbish,  but does remind us of one of our all-time favourite movies "Tea with Mussolini". That coincidence I am sure will elevate it to treasure.

In other cities such as Florence, most or all of their towers have been brought down due to wars, catastrophes, or urban renewal, San Gimignano has managed to conserve fourteen towers of varying heights, for which it is known internationally. It is now a UNESCO Heritage site 

Some of the towers are:
  • Torre Grossa, (1311) 54 metres
  • Torre della Rognosa, 51 metres
  • Torre Cugnanesi
  • Torre del Diabolo
  • Torri degli Ardinghelli
  • Torri dei Salvucci
  • Torre Chigi, (1280)
  • Torre Pettini

Saturday, 16 February 2013

Discovery in the Cantina

When clearing out the Cantina today we came across a box full of broken china. Not sure if its treasure or trash but really impressed with this little gem. 

It looks hand painted, and is a good interpretation of the Square in Ascoli Piceno which is shown in the second picture.  

The inscription says "50th Anniversary of the invalids of the war - 1917- 1967. Only 46 years old and 44 years to go before it becomes an Antique! 

Ascoli is  one of out favourite destination and only about 45 minutes from Cancello Est. 

The central historical part of the city is built in marble called travertino, a grey-hued stone extracted from the surrounding mountains. Its central Renaissance square, Piazza del Popolo ("Square of the People") is considered one of the most beautiful in Italy. According to traditional accounts, Ascoli Piceno was home to more than two hundred towers in the Middle Ages: today some fifty can still be seen.

Friday, 8 February 2013

Environmental Improvements Approved by the Mayor

Winter Wonderland from the Honeymoon Suite
The changing seasons of Gualdo!

Not to be put off by the snow, we ventured on foot to the village to keep our appointment with the Mayor and the planning committee.

It turned out to be a very fruitful meeting and as they were so impressed with the improvements to Cancello Est, they listened carefully to our plans and gave us the go ahead on all our requests.

Loo with a view! 
Permission was grated to install solar panels on the roof for heating and electricity. This means we can heat the pool in winter which will be an added bonus for the guests.

Secondly, they gave full approval for  the grey water recycling system. This will give us a good environmental solution for garden plants and our toilet systems which will all run on collected rain water (and snow!).

In addition, permission was grated for  the south facing sun-deck (or sun-set deck). This will really enhance the pool area and provide a great place for guests to enjoy the magnificent views of the Sibillini National Park.

Gualdo Village Square in the Snow 
Next on the list is the beehives for our own honey (Miele di Cancello Est) and the Worm Farm. We can use food waste for the benefit of the plants and organic veggies.

Our Archtect, Piero, thinks that we will be the only Boutique Hotel in an historic centre of Marche, that is totally environmentally self-sufficient.  Lets wait and see and hope that other establishments follow suit and help us preserve this beautiful area for future generations.

Let it Snow, let it Snow, let it Snow