Guided Hunting in Tuscany Italy

Discussion in 'Hunting Europe' started by Velo Dog, Feb 27, 2018.

  1. GL1960

    GL1960 AH Senior Member

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    Have been to Italy several times including Torino for the winter Olympics, Rome, Venice (my wife used to live there), Florence, Portofino, Positano, Capri and many other spots. Some of the nicest people you’ll ever meet!

    The history is enough of a reason to go, but the food and wine make it doubly so.

    Have you thought about reaching out to the folks at Beretta? If you don’t want to start off calling Italy, you could try the Beretta Gallery in New York or Dallas. They should be able to point you in the right direction.

    While I love Italy, if I was going to retire permanently in Europe it would be hard to beat Provence!
     
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  2. mdwest

    mdwest AH Elite

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    Totally agree..

    The last time we visited, we spent an afternoon at a winery about 20 miles south of Florence in a tiny town called Lillano.. One of the houses owned by the Medici family is on the property and is still very well maintained.. It was a pretty cool step back into history to walk where Cosimo may have walked at one point...
     
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  3. sgt_zim

    sgt_zim AH Fanatic

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    I can't BELIEVE nobody has mentioned Siena!!!

    The missus and I stayed in a little locanda in Siena just a couple minutes walk from il commune. OMG I love Siena! All of Tuscany, really, but particularly Siena. Not very far from San Gimignano, San Boromeo, and a number of other awesome, smaller towns and cities.

    It is unfortunately retarded expensive, at least to live. Not so bad on the wallet for touring. The prices they're getting for small flats is just staggering. Not sure how in the hell anyone affords to live there.
     

  4. Velo Dog

    Velo Dog AH ENABLER GOLD SUPPORTER SILVER SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Hello all,

    Thank you to each and every one for your excellent suggestions, much appreciated.
    It is my fault for not mentioning sooner that my wife and I have already visited Italy (last October / about 8 months ago) and now we have been home a good while.
    I do apologize for not submitting a report until now.
    No legitimate excuses, just lazy I guess.

    So sierraone, the person you mentioned to me as a possible hunting connection did not respond to my inquiries, nothing, just total silence.
    However, I eventually settled on a local Tuscany hunting guide / PH from an Internet search and was corresponding with him about a boar hunt when suddenly, he went silent.
    Fortunately, I had not sent my deposit to him yet.
    With that, I decided to give up and just be a non-hunting tourist with my wife, unless perhaps I might bump into some one in person while in Italy that, could assist in my interest to hunt while there.
    That didn’t happen but we enjoyed our time in Italy anyway.

    We visited Rome, the Vatican, the Colosseum, the Pantheon, various museums and points of interest that my wife wanted to see.
    This was her 3rd time to Rome but my first.
    No doubt my impression of Roma will confirm what most folks already know and that is that I am a knuckle dragger moron I guess.
    I enjoyed my visit, primarily because I like to travel, especially with my wife but Rome reminded me of Los Angeles (super crowded and so, impossible to relax in).
    She loves it there but I would not recommend it to anyone.
    Rome only inspired a yawn from me.

    Details:
    The food and wine in Rome ranged from pretty good to not good at all.
    Perhaps we just didn’t go to the best places because, the food and wine there was nowhere near as fantastic as people generally say it is.
    Central California and parts of Argentina produce noticeably better red wines, well OK, at least according to my cave man palate.
    And there is better tasting (more delicious flavor) Italian food in my experiences, to be had in restaurants located within big city Italian neighborhoods, across the USA and Canada.

    IMO, the only things remarkable about the food in Rome was that each little restaurant we tried, not only made their own pasta by hand (not with a machine as far as I could tell) but also served it “al dente”, much to my delight.
    Their sauce recipes seemed under-herbed, if I may use that term.
    However, everywhere that we tried Cappuccinos, including Rome and / or all other cities and villages, large and small, everywhere we travelled in Italy, proved to be perfection in caffein.
    Furthermore, Italian beer is excellent (but many countries around the world have excellent beer as well).
    Last but not least, Italian breads and pastries were excellent but for some reason, I do not recall people in general ever ranting about these for some unknown reason.

    During our 21 day Italian holiday, we only spent 3 days in Rome when we arrived.
    After that, we stayed in this village or that, in the Tuscany region then, we also travelled south to the Amalfi Coast.
    In the north (Tuscany) I found the food to be better than it was in Rome but again, generally speaking, it was not as remarkable as people seem to say say it is.
    There was however plenty of wild boar meat on Tuscany menus and I was pleasantly surprised to find rabbit was plentiful on pretty much the same menus as well.
    Rabbit ravioli with marinara was good but, they could stand to use a lot more herbs such as, basil and garlic to name only two of the many.
    The wild boar ragu was good but just good, not fantastic (it needed garlic ..... at least).
    Their salami (salumi) tended to be less salty than the USA version of same.
    For this, I definitely liked their version better than ours, as USA salamis tend to be much too salty for my taste.

    Along the Amalfi coast, I experienced the best food that we tried in all of our time in Italy, again in my block head opinion.
    I often ate squids and little oily fish, crunching up the little fish’s bones and all, everything either deep fried or grilled.
    To their credit, the Italians tended to not put thick breading or batter on their seafood when frying it.
    Instead they usually just seasoned it then next, they barely dusted it with either wheat flour or corn flour and dropped it into the very hot vegetable oil.
    Their way of doing this leaves the end product perfectly crunchy.
    For some reason the Italians, in contrast to their other foods, did indeed use adequate seasonings on all of the fried seafood that I tried there.

    Incidentally, sometimes I really enjoyed just popping into some grocery market and ordering food from their little deli counter/s.
    My wife did not stay with only one type of deli food and would usually try something different each time.
    Conversely, I usually (but not always) would end up with again, little oily fish, of which I am quite fond.
    But from the deli counters, I did not try the ones they had fried and then placed into the chilled display area.
    Instead, I repeatedly enjoyed them when they had apparently been steeped (pickled) in lemon juice and salt.
    Then they were placed in a display vessel and covered with olive oil or, seasoned, grilled and then submerged in olive oil, thus ready for sale.
    These, eaten with fresh Italian bread, olives and cold Italian beer were enjoyed very much by myself, very much indeed.

    Parting Shot:
    Compared to a few other countries I have visited, both with my wife and not, Italy was disappointingly expensive, again for the bits and pieces of it that I experienced.

    If one is planning to visit Italy, I’d recommend avoiding all of the larger cities, including Rome (especially including Rome).
    But high prices aside, the rural parts of Italy are beautiful and the small town folk were very friendly, apparently happy people.
    Everyone we encountered throughout the countryside, was very gracious and warm toward my wife and myself.
    People in Rome were not rude at all but, so busy as to not be concerned with what a couple of tourists were doing.

    Well anywhooo, I know I’m a weirdo in regards to the topic of Italy, especially the large crowds in Rome, the Vatican and the Colosseum, etc., ....... big cities there in general.
    This is not to mention that I wasn’t exactly “wowed” by the food and wine in Rome.
    Perhaps I did say wow! each time a waiter brought me a restaurant bill or when checking out of and so paying for our various hotel rooms though.

    Regards,
    Paul.
     
    Last edited: May 7, 2019
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  5. Red Leg

    Red Leg AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    Oh God. Why did I waste my time. :Banghead: I suspect Nancy and I would like your wife. (y) You on the other hand ...........

    I will promise to look closer at posting dates.
     
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  6. WAB

    WAB AH Elite

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    It is always interesting to see different perspectives on an area or experience. I travel internationally on business quite often, in fact I am writing this from Madrid. My wife and I probably qualify as ‘foodies’ and wine snobs. I would have to say that the two best meals I have eaten were at the Cliff House Hotel in Ardmore, Ireland (a Michelin star restaurant), and at the butcher shop in Panzano, Tuscany. We ate there while staying in a Villa in the vineyards of The Fontadi winery. I highly recommend both it and the Fontadi wines, but then I like Tuscan food!
     
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  7. Ridgewalker

    Ridgewalker AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    I grew up as a country kid, so I only enjoyed Rome and the Vatican for their history, art and architecture. My wife is the food person in our family. I am NOT a fan of pastas! When they served pasta as the predecessor of every meal, I left it behind. I will have to say that I loved every red wine I tried! They were cheap IMO!
    As you said the cities I visited, Forenza, Roma, Naples, etc were much more crowded and expensive than the smaller towns. We loved Tuscany! Much calmer peaceful life. We would stop to visit with farmers working in their vineyards and they would share a bundle of grapes with us. Fun time!
    Thanks for sharing! Hopefully there will be a wild boar in your sights on your next adventure!
     
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  8. Velo Dog

    Velo Dog AH ENABLER GOLD SUPPORTER SILVER SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    No worries Joe,

    I am to blame for lateness of my report, nobody else, leaving you to bang out that long list of suggestions for nothing.
    I apologize to you and others here, since you good fellows typed various lists of recommendations for me, after we’d been home a good while.
    Hopefully, others here can put your helpful information to good use in planning their own Italian holiday.

    To re-cap my previous rant, Italy in general was not a bad experience for me, it just was not up to speed with its reputation, especially the big cities.
    The paintings and marble sculptures IMO were amazing but for me, nothing to go back for a second look at.
    And again, the food was good but not exactly the Heavenly experience that it is cracked up to be.
    I’m fond of Chianti/ San Sangiovese grapes and it is no surprise that, the Italianos do make good use of them.

    But honestly, the best Sangiovese I’ve ever tried was from Napa California.
    Generally speaking, all the very best tasting reds of any description IMO, are consistently coming from from Napa Valley each fall season.
    Anyway, the wonderful Sangiovese wine of which I speak was from a very small (VERY small) mom & pop establishment called; “Gonzalves Winery” (long-standing California Portuguese family owned), within the city limits of Napa itself, near the north end of town.
    They are so small that they do not have a tasting room or web site or any of that fancy bling.
    Furthermore, Gonzalves only produces small batches and so, I’ve never seen it for sale except in Napa area liquor stores.
    It’s the best Sangiovese I’ve ever tried, anywhere.

    On the wine topic, be they Cabernets, Pinots, blends or dreaded Merlots, etc., etc., Napa red wines beat anything I’ve tried anywhere, including Italy.
    In all fairness, Napa wines are expensive, usually even more than bottled Italian wine tends to be here in the USA or over in Italy either one so, there is that.

    As mentioned before, I did have a good time in Italy but honestly, it was not everything I thought it would be, it fell a little short of the target, so to speak.
    Be that as it may, if a man wants to go with his wife or girlfriend to a place where his woman will be thrilled with it all, I’d say Italy is an excellent choice, perhaps the very best choice on earth, to make a romantic impression.
    My wife loves it there and so, we might go back someday.
    If so, I will again smile at everyone we pass on the street, say “buon journo” (or however you spell it), keep my happy face in while in the crowded museums and historical sites, as well as again enjoy the food and drink, chew with my mouth shut, plus not gripe about the seemingly omnipresent cigarette smoke, massive crowds of fellow tourists and all the rest.

    My wife is an incredible woman and so, it’s totally worth it to me to sometimes just go with her plan, as she does indeed appreciate it.
    She certainly has tagged along during plenty of my off-beat destinations, including African buffalo hunting and a fishing trip to The Amazon.
    Those types of adventures that I’ve planned have not been on her bucket list whatsoever but, she went for my sake and made the best of it each time so, I went to Italy with her and did my level best to enjoy it as much as a simpleton such as I could manage.
    She’s a keeper.

    Best Regards,
    Paul.
     
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  9. sierraone

    sierraone AH ENABLER SILVER SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Have had dinner on the hill top Orvieto while on my way to Florence in about 2001 I believe. San Gimignano doesn't ring a bell, so I guess I missed it.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 7, 2019

  10. Foxi

    Foxi AH Elite

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    " that Rome has nothing to offer"
    :sleep::sleep:
    But only an American would dare say that (and the Italians from the deep south).
    Every square meter there, three thousand year old human history and its culture and then it has nothing to offer.......
     
    Last edited: May 14, 2019
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  11. WAB

    WAB AH Elite

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    LOL, well said Foxi . Personally I find Rome amazing. To stand on the Paletine Hill and imagine Caesar issuing his decree that all the world be taxed, or to visit the Mamertine prison and read Paul’s words from 2 Timothy. It is truly amazing. The last time we visited our flat windows opened to a road faced by a stone wall. Our view was being obstructed by the back wall of the temple of Mars!
     
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  12. Timbo

    Timbo AH Fanatic

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    My God!! Listening to all you guys reminiscing about Italy and all the places "you MUST visit"! Jeez! You lot are worse than a Thomas Cook convention! I can almost imagine the vino, spaghetti and sauce splattering the walls, tables and down the shirt fronts of you lot!! LMAO!!

    Poor old @Blazer 30-06, interceded with a nice offer, which Brickburn kindly translated. So can somebody please ask him a question, related to hunting?

    For the record my (now ex) wife was an Italian model and actress. (Italy's nice - but after 15yrs of touring my piece of Italy - enough was ENOUGH!!)
     
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  13. WAB

    WAB AH Elite

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    LOL fair point Timbo! I would love to know where I can go on reasonable priced day hunts for boar, roe deer and pheasant in tuscany. Not all at the same time, but if I were to rent a villa in Tuscany for a month, I would love to be able to book days in the field to work off some of the pasta and wine!
     
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  14. Blaser 30-06

    Blaser 30-06 New Member

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    Ciao amico io caccio a Firenze da molto tempo, sono molto lieto di rispondere alle tue domande riguardo alla caccia !
     

  15. Bushpig4Ever

    Bushpig4Ever AH Enthusiast

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    I was invited to a wild boar hunt on the island of Sardinia. Well, Sardinia isn't really Italy, definitely not according to the folks of Sardinia. By the way, I was the very first foreigner invited to a hunt, that hunting group don't even invites Italiens! Ok, I felt quite honored and was looking forward to some exciting hunting.

    The hunters were armed to the teeth, wearing bandoliers across the chest. They looked at me rather suspiciously but when told that I'm a forester living in South Africa they got soon very friendly and interested in me and what I had to relate. It was November and snow was falling in small flakes.They placed me on a big rock in the middle of the forest - there I stood for a couple of hours. Didn't see anything but didn't fall asleep due to the constant shooting. Wow, after 50 shots I stopped counting, however the shoot-out carried on till it was almost dark. I wondered about the number of pigs and the work waiting for us.

    Well, at the meeting place my eyes popped out, there were two smallish wild boars, that was all. Maybe 75+ shots fired but only two pigs. The evening was very pleasant, every participant had brought along some of his own products, i e wine, bread, cheese, sausages and sweets. I will never forget the day, unfortunately all photos got lost. Italy is a stunning country: food, wine, history and fashion - no other country can beat Italy in this regard. Hunting? Forget about it. There are better countries.
     
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  16. Foxi

    Foxi AH Elite

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    Molto fumo poco arrosto.

    Its an Italian saying and means : much smoke ,less roasted meat :)
    Nice story.
     

  17. Foxi

    Foxi AH Elite

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    What did you think of the idea of us meeting for a "Verlängerten" (special sort of Austrian coffee) so you are in Salzburg?
    If time and circumstances allow ?
    Regards
    Foxi
     

  18. Red Leg

    Red Leg AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    Absolutely!! Will send you a PM.
     

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