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Montepulciano

Montepulciano is effortlessly civilised and makes a beguiling base should you have a villa nearby. Its appeal lies in the mellow mix of Renaissance palaces and moody wine bars made for sipping Vino Nobile di Montepulciano. Like all quintessential Tuscan towns, it is built on a human scale so designed for strolling and relaxing on a Renaissance stage set, with set-pieces around every corner. Architecturally, Montepulciano is “the Pearl of the Cinquecento” so shaped by the Renaissance. The town is Antonio da Sangallo’s masterpiece, just as Pienza belongs to Rossellino. While Pienza was perfectly planned, Montepulciano developed more freely so has an asymmetry and spiritedness that Pienza lacks. Even so, there is a loftiness about Montepulciano that makes itself felt in the noble palaces and equally noble wine. Even the citizens consider themselves superior, somehow above the fray. But ultimately Montepulciano is a smooth operator, delivering the true Tuscan lifestyle.

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