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A Vineyard in Tuscany: A Wine Lover's Dream
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A Vineyard in Tuscany: A Wine Lover's Dream

(The Tuscan Trilogy #2)

really liked it 4.00  ·  Rating details ·  712 ratings  ·  121 reviews
Finding your dream house with a vineyard in Tuscany is like searching the woods for porcini mushrooms: a labor of love. Such feats require patience, discernment, resolve, and an indestructible sense of humor.

The Mátés’ future home and wine estate lies amid breathtaking scenery in a community brimming with warmth. In Italy’s most prestigious wine zone, Montalcino, they rest
Hardcover, 256 pages
Published November 17th 2007 by Albatross (first published January 1st 2007)
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really liked it Average rating 4.00  · 
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 ·  712 ratings  ·  121 reviews

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Jun 15, 2010 rated it liked it
This was a mildly entertaining account of how the Hungarian/Canadian author, who is a writer by profession, found and bought a crumbling ancient friary building in Tuscany, rebuilt it into a family home, and planted a vineyard with four different kinds of wine grapes. Pleasantly descriptive & humorous & evocative of living in Tuscany, yet it kind of lacked a soulful touch.

I was conflicted about this book. On the one hand, I was interested in the details, such as the hunt for the perfect property
May 30, 2008 added it
A guy's version of *Under the Tuscan Sun* -- It made me hungry and thirsty, and I loved the insights into planting a vineyard and rebuilding a centuries-old house. Witty and intelligently written.
(Then the author bio says he left Tuscany to sail the South Pacific -- If I'd worked that hard on my home, you'd have to tear me away with a pliers!)
May 14, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: food-wine
Very enjoyable recounting of the immense sacrifice and hard work of the author and his family in order to create their dream vineyard. Planting 42,000 vines by hand is an example. His book serves two purposes--1) as a marketing piece for the award winning wines created by the Mate Vineyard and 2) as a love letter to Montalcino and Tuscany.
Aug 16, 2019 rated it liked it
Funny, informative romp in the vineyards of Tuscany by a well-heeled author who, with his wife, pursued his passion: locating, renovating and planning for the planting 15 acres of grapes on a Tuscan ruin. I enjoyed reading about his adventures and was pea green with envy when he discovered the ruins of an Etruscan village!
Karen Floyd
May 18, 2016 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this book tremendously. It appealed to me on so many levels - from the home in Italy, with Italian friends, to the nitty=gritty of how to plant a vineyard on just the right soil to produce a great wine. Good wine surpasses any description. Mate is funny, self-deprecating and descriptive. Make no mistake, transforming a long-abandoned Italian monastery into a livable home and a great vineyard is very hard work, which Mate makes light of.
Readers gripe about the money the people who writ
Kari Macknight Dearborn
Dec 25, 2015 rated it really liked it
It's a joy to read a book written not only by someone who is obviously so in love with the subject matter but who can also tell a great story. I was immediately taken on the journey of building a house and winery in the hills of Brunello and I can't wait to taste the wines for myself someday. If even in a dark corner of your mind you've longed for that pastoral life among the vines, this book will both shock you into the harsh reality and have you wistfully aching for that life for yourself.
Jul 31, 2008 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: noone
Recommended to Alyce by: amazon
Mate, an affluent braggart camouflaging as a self-effacing working stiff who just happened to buy an estate next to Banfi, reminded me of one of our college mantras; "Don't be humble, you're not that great".
The dialogue is strained, every punch line involves the family’s incomparable brilliance, and the laughs are too few to justify this ode to self-aggrandizement. Mate is no Peter Mayle.
Mar 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
An entertaining, but not very in-depth tale of the creation of a vineyard in, well, Tuscany, obviously. Several years pass in this short book - it’s, in many ways, more a collection of scenes from those years, rather than a comprehensive narrative.

The tone is light and engaging. I enjoyed it.
Aug 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Myamm...this book is like a mini, because it takes about two hours to read - holiday, because it makes you sit back, sip a glass of something you enjoy and dream of the day when your dreams will, inevitably, come true.

Maté's tales of tuscany made me feel the sunshine in my face and brought the smell of lavender and dry grass, dust and warm rocks right into my living room...and sometimes that is all you need.

Yes, he leads a life different to that of many of us. And why not? I don'
David Lumpkin
Sep 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
After weeks of delay, knowing if I start this book it will end, I finally picked it up and began. I sipped the words slowly extracting flavors of excitement, frustration, diligence and joy and enjoyed every drop.
I recommend it highly and that it should be read after reading "The Hills of Tuscany". The author's earlier book sets up the romance for the second. This author has captured everything I love about reading. It is interesting, entertaining and moves the heart. It covers everything from th
Diane Anderson
Sep 11, 2020 rated it really liked it
Initially, I got a real "humble-brag" feel from this story because, let's face it, most of us could not afford to buy the friary, never mind RESTORE it. And then make a vineyard and travel about to go to our rental in the Dolomites and to go sailing in BC [Bring Cash!] for three months.
However, as I continued to read and the level of vision and commitment became apparent, I was hoping for the fairy tale ending, which did come, but not before a lot of people worked very hard to bring the dream to
Pam McGinty
Jul 13, 2017 rated it really liked it
If you are wondering what purchasing an old villa in Tuscany to refurbish as your new home, Mr. Mate's descriptions of the process were both informative and described vividly. Oh, and, if you want to learn how grapes are made into wine, from the clearing of overgrown land, planting, harvesting and winemaking, you will like this book. I felt as if I was there beside the familigia while reading this book. Mr. Mate's vineyard is now producing wonderful wines from Tuscany $39 to $695 per bottle. I m ...more
Mar 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This was a great book. The only problem was I didn't have a nice bottle of red wine when I started reading it. Tuscany here I come...but my husband said no to the vineyard. I enjoyed this so much, and I only chose it because of my reading challenge to pick a book with food on the cover. I laughed so much. I even recommended this to my husband to read because it was filled with so many things he enjoys. I highly recommend this...but grab some wine first!!
Susan Powers
Jul 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I lived this man’s story, right along beside him. I felt the blisters on my hands, tasted the grappa ( it’s terrible, by the way) and smelled the fermenting wine in the oak barrels. I almost learned too, to curse la Madonna.
If you’re remotely passionate about wine, Italy or romantic notions of living abroad , this memoir will hook you.
Chris Yaldezian
Sep 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is a book for wine lovers. It is about the dream of owning a Tuscan countryside vineyard,and making a world class wine. It uses the location as a character, because as plot,the location could have been in California. The author does a good job of letting the reader share and experience the dream.
Anna Fenoglio Tift
Sep 06, 2019 rated it liked it
I picked up this book from my pretty book pile because I went to Italy in September years ago and wanted to relive the early fall countryside a bit. Mission accomplished. It made moving to the Tuscan countryside seem idyllic and funny and always cooperative so if you need a brief, light Tuscan escape, this is your book. Excuse me now while I go pack.
Apr 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
I liked this book, it was funny and interesting. If I ever make it to Tuscany I would love to try to see this winery/house. And of course now I am on the hunt to find the wine in my area and try it.

Good book for wine lovers!
Jun 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
The story of renovating a house and establishing a vineyard in Tuscany. It is written in a humorous, entertaining style . Reading this book made me want to pack my bags and go to Tuscany soon( as soon as the heat wave is over)
Sep 27, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Wonderful stories make up this book, but it jumps around too much and some of the tales seemed unfinished to me. A cast of characters would have helped keep everything straight. Still a good read.
Gretchen Lindquist
May 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is a perfect book to get into the right frame of mind for a trip to Tuscany. Very enjoyable.
Jun 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
I learned so much about vines...and smiled and laughed throughout:

some notes and favorite lines:
Kate Martin
Aug 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
Reading this book makes me want to abandon my computer and go dig in the forest, especially in Italy. Great escapist reading for a crazy busy night in suburbia.
Jan 19, 2020 rated it really liked it
Italy, an old vineyard and home in Tuscany, good food, and wine, what’s not to love
May 17, 2020 rated it really liked it
Lovely book; Combines all my passions : Italy, food and wine, architecture and history.
May 28, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Very well written. Informative and humorous. After reading this I'm dying to go to Italy.
Laura Bradbury
A true story about how the adversity-addicted Máté builds a world-renowned
vineyard from a ruin in Tuscany. A light,
funny story that also satisfies lovers of
Jul 09, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A vineyard in Tuscany

You know one of those travelling and lifestyle books, where people of fortunate circumstances and through their course of life share their enthusiasm for the newest destinations and make you jealous of the ever-changing scenery? Yeah, this is not one of them.

After finishing reading this book I feel like I’ve gained a friend in Máté. So deeply touched I was, and still am, for his adventures and the fulfillment of his life-long dreams. There were couple of moments when I was f
Mar 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A delicious read. ;) The author has a bit of an ego but that's easy to overlook and it actually ads to the story. Get some red wine and bread and enjoy.

Also great for trip planning.
Jun 07, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: memoirs
I'm at about the middle of this book. Good points: it really is funny. If a book is supposed to be humerous then I want some pretty good laughs. One story brought me to tears (the Italian test to receive an agricultural tax credit) so I think it qualifies on this point.
Bad points: No photos or maps!! The book is about the renovation of an historic Italian estate for crying out loud. The descriptions are good and yes I can go haul out the atlas...but I'm not going to find every little town and vi
Jan 15, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Bored people, People seeking some laughs. Easy reading lovers
Shelves: my-2-pfennig
This was the 2'nd book out of Máté's "The Tuscan Trilogy", and I am still livid about the fact, that our Public Library had this one but not the first.
I really, really dislike (read, HATE!) it whenever I read a book series out of order, basically not reading from the beginning. But I was being repeatedly reassured by one of the Ladies that this was the first part. DX
Anyway, this is an non-fictional Autobiography about land-life in sunny Tuscany and about the process of renovating a House & culti
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Ferenc Máté has made a career of out documenting his own quests—whether it’s restoring a Tuscan ruin, building a vineyard from scratch, or sailing the seven seas.

Born in Transylvania, he escaped at age eleven when the Hungarian revolution was crushed by Soviet tanks. He grew up in Vancouver and has lived in California, Paris, Rome, the Bahamas and New York. He has worked on a railroad extra-gang

Other books in the series

The Tuscan Trilogy (4 books)
  • The Hills of Tuscany
  • The Wisdom of Tuscany: Simplicity, Security & the Good Life - Making the Tuscan Lifestyle Your Own
  • The Tuscan Trilogy: The Hills of Tuscany / A Vineyard in Tuscany / The Wisdom of Tuscany

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