- a quiet, natural force
The third generation of family-run Fattoria La Vialla, set deep in the undulating landscape of south-east Tuscany, are invaluable in helping with the oil harvest in November: Piero Lo Franco’s eight grandchildren pick olives from the groves on the estate and take them to press. The lucky get to hold a freshly toasted bruschetta beneath the mill to catch drops of the new oil, green gold, peppery, a flavour explosion. The farm is run on old-world principles. In newfangled terms the husbandry of the farm’s olive trees, grape vines, wheat fields and vegetable beds would be described organic and biodynamic. The inspiration however came from the grandmother of Piero – the business’s founder – whose table was revered for its rigorous and uncompromising excellence in the selection and preparation of local Tuscan produce. Piero Lo Franco’s three sons, Gianni, Antonio and Bandino, now manage the estate and they know such qualities cannot be taken for granted today. They work to ensure all the products in La Vialla’s range – Chianti Classico, Pecorino Stagionato made using milk from the flock of ewe’s grazing on the farmland, crisp almond cantucci and the fabulous 750ml bottles of extra virgin olive oil – are produced with unexceptionable care according to the company’s foundation ethos.
La Vialla farm also produces home made pasta sauces such as the spicy pomodori, olive e capperi, perfect for a quick store cupboard supper. Simply stir into linguine or spoon over ravioli di ricotta and serve with leafy rocket and Parmesan to conjure the enchantment of the fattoria. To order a catalogue www.lavialla.it