FISAR Christmas dinner

At this time of the year food is an important part of the Italian Christmas tradition. It’s not easy to say what Italians eat with Christmas because it vary widely across Italy. Every region has its own flavors and cooking style.

FISAR dinner

As Christmas is coming, FISAR organized a Christmas dinner for members in restaurant Betulia in Bettole. Bettole is a small village in the Valdichiana area, 25 minutes drive from Montepulciano.

The restaurant is in the centre of the town. It has a really cozy and nice atmosphere. The food is outstanding, especially when it comes to meat and traditional pastas. Highly recommended!

Betulia is owned by chef and FISAR sommelier Nicola Masiello. I know Nicola Masiello since I started with the sommelier course. He was one of my teachers. Nicola is very knowledgeable about wine and local food. Moreover Nicola is an excellent cook!

Nicola Masiello

The Christmas dinner meal at restaurant Betulia was a full course dinner traditionally based on (Chianina and wild boar) meat. Yummy!

The menu was filled with delicious mouth-watering Tuscan food and wines. Here’s the special menu from our FISAR Christmas dinner at Betulia (in Italian..sorry)


  • Composta di salumi caldi in salsa balsamica e cialda di Parmigiano Reggiano; Rolle di coniglio “porchetto”; millefoglie di patate al Pecorino Toscano DOP
    wine : Toscana Rosso IGT 2017 winery Centine
  • Acquacotta Chianina
  • Maltagliati al ragù dell’Aia
    wine : Toscana Rosso IGT 2017 winery Centine
  • Cinghiale in dolce e forte su polentina mantecata
    wine : Brunello di Montalcino DOCG winery Banfi
Wild boar with polenta
  • Mosaico della tradizione natalizia
    wine : Moscadello di Montalcino DOC 2016 Florus
  • Caffè

I had a wonderful evening and a great Christmas dinner. Above all I enjoyed meeting the other members of FISAR. Restaurant Betulia is a good restaurant and worth the detour. I hope to come back soon and repeat my foodie experience in this amazing location in Tuscany.

Merry Christmas!

Christmas in Montepulciano

Olive oil mill in Montepulciano

Il Frantoio di Montepulciano

Frantoio means olive oil mill or olive oil press. Many olive oil producers rely on an external frantoio. Il Frantoio di Montepulciano is established in Montepulciano and counts 600 members. It is a farmers cooperative that supply members various services for the production of extra virgin olive oil.

Olive oil production in Siena

The olive groves are cultivated in the province of Siena. The gently rolling hills around Montepulciano are suitable for cultivating olive groves. The altitude of the hills are about 300-650 m above sea level.

In the province of Siena are many small producers who cultivate olive trees. The farmers take care of the plants by pruning and harvesting for having good olive oil every year.

After harvesting by hand or with mechanical shakers the farmers bring the olives in boxes to the olive mill “frantoio”. The olives are washed to remove dirt. When ready, the olives will be crushed and pressed cold (< 28 degrees) in a modern machine.

Thanks to the cold press the olives keep their properties for a high quality extra virgin olive oil. After the extraction of the oil, the olive oil will be soon packed in bottles, cans or in small tins.

Different types of olive oil

Il Frantoio di Montepulciano produces different types of high quality olive oils. Olive oil extra virgin from il Frantoio di Montepulciano is obtained from the olive varieties Leccino, Frantoio and Moraiolo.

Leccino, Frantoio and Moraiolo olive varieties

Olio Extravergine di Oliva 100% Italiano

Oil produced with a range of traditional Tuscan olive varieties.

Olio Extravergine di Oliva DOP Terre di Siena

DOP (Protected Designation of Origin) guarantees the area of production and qualitative characteristics of the olives. Olio extravergine di Oliva DOP Terre di Siena is a very high quality olive oil.

Olio Extravergine di Oliva IGP Toscano

IGP (Protected Geographical Indication) is similar to DOP. IGP olive oil extra virgin is obtained with olives grown in Tuscany. This oil is quality guaranteed.

Olio Extravergine di Oliva Biologico

Organic olive oil is olive oil produced following the European regulation on organic production and labeling on organic products. The olive oil must be obtained from locally grown organic olives. These olives are not treated by chemicals.

All products mentioned above have different flavors. But the fresher the oil is, the better it tastes. Above all extra virgin olive oil is rich in antioxidants and consumption of olive oil may benefit your overall health in several ways.

Olio Extravergine di Oliva

Throughout the year you can visit the mill “Il Frantoio di Montepulciano” and taste the oils that are produced.

Wine tour at Dievole


The wine estate Dievole is located in the Chianti Classico area, one of the most popular wine region of Tuscany between Siena and Florence. Dievole overlooks the wonderful vineyards and olive groves. It covers an area of 400 hectares within the Chianti Classico territory in Vagliagli.

Dievole vineyards

Dievole is an old winery founded in the 11th century. This Italian winery has a thousand year history. Today Dievole is owned by an oil tycoon from Argentina Alejandro Bulgheroni and is part of a network of wineries in Tuscany: Chianti Classico, Bolgheri and Montalcino.

The winery Dievole produces elegant wines such as Chianti Classico, Chianti Classico Gran Selezione, Vin Santo and IGT white wine. But they make also other Italian great wines: Bolgheri DOC and Brunello di Montalcino DOCG.

Wine tour

During the wine tour we discovered the history and the taste of Dievole wines. We were with a small group of 9 persons (it is necessary to pre-arrange this wine experience).

Wine Tasting room Dievole

Our guide waited for us at the wine shop. She started with a brief introduction to the wines and the history of Dievole. After a small talk we walked through the vineyards, the historic wine cellars and tasting rooms. After the tour we started with individual tastings of the quality wines including good cheeses and local meats.

Our guide was really knowledgeable and she answered all of our questions. It was a great wine experience at Dievole. The complex Dievole looks really amazing with good manicured gardens and great views over the vineyards. The is tour is about 2 hours long and we tasted 6 wines.


Everything from the wine, food pairings and lunch were top quality. We brought some bottles home. It was a wonderful experience. Therefor… I will be back for sure for an other wine tour!